Northumberland Line

Information on the Northumberland Line improving connectivity and accessibility in South East Northumberland.

Northumberland County Council is seeking to improve connectivity and accessibility in South East Northumberland.

Improving the links from towns such as Ashington, Bedlington and Blyth is of key importance to encouraging more sustainable access to the key regional economic centres in Tyne and Wear.

The scheme will help reverse the decline in the deprivation of these areas which has been evident since the closure of the mining and shipbuilding industries over the last 30 years.  

Improvements to transport links will also be instrumental in stimulating economic investment within the region and will help to bring forward much needed delivery of housing allocations. 

Various options to improve transport links have been considered for a number of years, with the reopening of the Northumberland Line between Ashington and Newcastle to passenger services identified as the preferred option.

Consultation - Sept & Oct 2019

A public consultation ran between 2nd September and 18th October 2019, to raise awareness of the scheme and find out more about what people would like the service to look like.

You can view the information boards here:

The Northumberland Line uses, with the exception of a four- mile length of the East Coast Main Line south of Benton junction, existing freight-only lines. 
Currently, with the exception of Manors and Newcastle Central, the scheme is considering using six stations:
  • Ashington;
  • Bedlington;
  • Blyth Park and Ride at Bebside;
  • South Newsham;
  • Seaton Delaval;
  • Northumberland Park.

It is hoped the journey times between Ashington and Newcastle will be around 35 minutes. 

Keeping freight paths to facilitate the economic aspirations of both Lynemouth Power Station and the Port of Blyth is also critically important. 
By creating an enhanced rail infrastructure that will improve transport opportunities to and from South East Northumberland, the Northumberland Line scheme will deliver numerous benefits including:
  • A real incentive for potential employers to relocate to the area;
  • Providing vital infrastructure to deliver the Council’s aspirations for population and economic growth as identified within the emerging Local Plan;
  • Increasing opportunities for developing employment in the wider Tyne and Wear area by providing improved access to labour supply;
  • Delivering significant growth in sectors such as the National Renewable Energy Centre, offshore oil and gas, renewables, engineering and for the Port of Blyth
  • November 2019 - Submission of Final Bid for Transforming Cities Fund
  • November 2019 - Completion of Outline Business Case
  • 2022/23 - Completion of Phase 1 including stations at Ashington, Bedlington, South Newsham and Northumberland Park
  • 2024 - Completion of Phase 2 including stations at Bebside and Seaton Delaval

Map of the route