Girish Mahajan

Tees Valley line

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System  National Rail
Owner  Network Rail
Tees Valley line
Locale  County Durham North Yorkshire North East England
Operator(s)  Northern TransPennine Express
Track gauge  4 ft 8 ⁄2 in (1,435 mm)

Trains on the eastern tees valley line 19 dec 2016

The Tees Valley line is a name for the railway route between Bishop Auckland and Saltburn via Darlington, Middlesbrough and Redcar. Also operated on the line are services from Newcastle-upon-Tyne to Middlesbrough, Redcar and Saltburn via Darlington (using the East Coast Main Line between Newcastle and Darlington). The line between Darlington and Bishop Auckland has been re-branded The Bishop Line and is supported by the Bishop Line Community Rail Partnership.


Beyond Bishop Auckland, the railway line continues as the re-opened heritage Weardale Railway. A regular freight service used to operate on weekdays moving coal from Wolsingham to Ratcliffe-On-Soar power station and Scunthorpe Steelworks, but this working ceased in 2013.


All trains along the route are currently operated by Northern with Class 142 Pacers and occasionally Class 156 SuperSprinters. TransPennine Express operate fifteen services per day in each direction from Manchester Airport to Middlesbrough via the line.

Between Darlington and Middlesbrough/Saltburn there is a service running almost every half-hour during the daytime, becoming roughly hourly in the evenings. The service to Bishop Auckland is more sparse, running hourly at peak times and two hourly off peak. A once weekly parliamentary service in each direction stops at Tees-side Airport. The new Northern Rail franchise operator Northern has announced its intention to increase the service to Bishop Auckland to hourly (15 each way weekdays and 12 each way on Sundays) once the new franchise agreement came into force on 1 April 2016. The unpopular Pacer units are also to be withdrawn once new rolling stock is delivered in 2018.

The towns and villages served by the line are listed below.

  • Bishop Auckland
  • Shildon
  • Newton Aycliffe
  • Heighington
  • Darlington
  • Middleton St George
  • Eaglescliffe
  • Thornaby
  • Middlesbrough
  • Redcar
  • Marske-by-the-Sea
  • Saltburn-by-the-Sea
  • The Bishop Line between Bishop Auckland and Darlington is designated as a community rail route and has its own Community rail partnership (CRP).


    The section of line between Bishop Auckland and the East Coast Main Line, as well as the section between Dinsdale Station near Middleton St George and Eaglescliffe station, follow the original route of the Stockton and Darlington Railway.

    The line from Middlesbrough to Saltburn, as well as the freight line to Boulby mine, were part of the Whitby Redcar and Middlesbrough Union Railway (WRMU). This extended to Whitby, until it was closed on 5 May 1958.

    In March 2015, a one kilometre section of electrified track was laid to the west of the line between Heighington and Newton Aycliffe to allow low speed testing of the Class 800/801s being built at Hitachi Newton Aycliffe.


    Tees Valley line Wikipedia

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