North East Coastliners

"A Voice for Durham Coast Rail Users"

Grand Centrl have today issued the following statement

Following the recent Government announcement that England will enter an initial four-week period of lockdown, Grand Central has made the decision to temporarily suspend all its rail services from the end of service on Friday 6th November. Customers with tickets to travel between 7th November and 2nd December can claim a full refund or change their ticket to a later date. Tickets remain on sale for trains departing from 3rd December onwards.

After careful weighing-up of our options and following discussions with the Department for Transport and trade union representatives, it’s clear that the difficult but necessary measure of taking a short period of hibernation is our only course of action. We enjoyed tremendous support from our customers after resuming services following the first national lockdown, and we thank them for their patience once again.

Grand Central’s open-access business model means, unlike most train operators, we rely exclusively on income from ticket sales, with no subsidy from Government. The new lockdown will bring an inevitable fall in passenger numbers, meaning it is not possible to continue operating during this period.

With no trains in service, some of our crew and associated staff will be supported by the Government furlough scheme during this period. Our staff continue to be a source of great pride to Grand Central, thanks to their understanding, professionalism and commitment. We thank you.

We also understand our passengers may have questions over refunds and cancelled services, and we have a dedicated web page to answer those queries and guide you to the relevant source of information. Click here to visit to the page.

Grand Central will be back soon, please continue to follow official advice on safe travel and social distancing.

Richard McClean
Managing Director
Grand Central

Teesside Mayor Ben  Houchen & Hartlepool Council Leader Shane Moore have announced that £1.5m has been made available for a GRIP 3 study for returning Hartlepool’s disused up platform to service . GRIP is Network Rail’s ‘Governance for Railway Investment Projects’ process and has eight stages from Output Definition to Project Close Out. The present study, which is intended to be completed by March 2021, will cover Output Definition, Feasibility and Option Selection i.e developing  the options, then assessing the most appropriate to meet the requirements and confirming that they can be economically delivered. Only after this has been completed and approved can the project move on to detailed design.

The Government has yesterday  named Tees Valley as the UK’s first Hydrogen Transport Hub . On the east side of the Pennines, Transport for the North has been backing the Tees Valley Combined Authorities‘ plans to bring hydrogen fuel cell trains and related hydrogen innovations to the Tees Valley for some time. The fact that Tees Valley is already responsible for half of the UK’s hydrogen production, and its compact nature as an industrial centre, makes it an ideal location for the development of hydrogen train and other hydrogen transport technologies and as a UK centre of excellence.