Tuesday, 9 June 2009

Scunthorpe-Doncaster Rail Blockade Update

Later this month the Scunthorpe to Doncaster rail line is closed for major engineering works, affecting the Cleethorpes-Manchester Airport Transpennine Express service and the Scunthorpe-Sheffield Northern Rail local service.

Transpennine Express have released the timetable (on their website) for the replacement bus services. Oddly enough the all stations replacement bus service will always serve Habrough, despite some trains not calling there. Otherwise it is as expected with a replacement bus serving Scunthorpe, Barnetby, Habrough and Grimsby Town with another just calling at Grimsby Town en-route from Doncaster to Cleethorpes. Waiting times from bus to train are about 15-20 minutes which seems reasonable.

Generally the replacement bus services will call at the station forecourt or car park, though in Habrough eastbound the bus stop will be outside 'The Station' public house while in Barnetby buses will stop on Kings Road. Stands C5 and C6 will be used in Doncaster Interchange, next to the railway station.

No timetable that I can find for Northern's replacement bus services between Scunthorpe and Hatfield and Stainforth yet. Though it is expected just to be an hourly service calling at Althorpe, Crowle and Thorne South en-route.

As you may remember I had concerns that the first service of the day between Barton and Cleethorpes would be cancelled during the blockade due to no train being available to operate it. Well posts on the Northern Railways Forum indicate the Northern Rail will keep two Class 153 units at Cleethorpes during the blockade - one to operate the main all day service and the other to operate the early morning service and then act as a spare. If this does happen then it is great the Barton Line will not have to suffer but it does seem an ineffcient use of a train to have it left idle at Cleethorpes from 8am onwards.

The way to avoid the above situation would have been to operate a Cleethorpes to Scunthorpe shuttle service, as previosuly discussed, and a train from that service could also operate the early morning Barton Line service. Now Network Rail have given a reason why such a shuttle service will not be possible - operating restrictions. Make of that what you will.

Network Rail's press release also mentions that at the end of the blockade (29th August to 6th September), Goole to Doncaster services will also be replaced by buses. This shall impact on Hull to South Yorkshire services. Will they be diverted via Selby or replaced by buses?


Anonymous said...

Are the rail replacement coaches free of charge due to inconvenience or is the usual standard fare?

Skye said...


I heard a rumour this morning that they will be blocking the rails in the Scunthorpe area again in January, have you got any more info cos I can't seem to find any..

Humber Transport said...

No sorry Ive not heard anything. Willl post if I do