CHANGES to railway timetables will see up to 56 new services added to the Tyne Valley line, which serves towns and villages in the district as part of the Newcastle to Carlisle service.

Northern announced the new timetable will be introduced on Monday, September 14, delivering more services and extending operating hours.

Only 19 services on the Newcastle to Carlisle line are currently in operation under a timetable introduced on July 25, but the new timetable will see the rail operator run 47 services from next week.

The first Monday to Saturday services will depart from Newcastle at 05.42am, the same as the current timetable, however services will be increased to around three an hour.

The final train leaving Newcastle has been extended from 9.25pm to 10.50pm.

There will be 28 new services throughout the day for the Carlisle to Newcastle service with 51 trains travelling through Hexham to Newcastle, compared to the previous 23.

Northern has called on passengers to prepare for timetable changes as the industry adapts to a ‘new normal’ as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.

The rail operator said the timetables don’t represent a return to pre-Covid service levels, but reflect the challenges faced by the operator and the changing demands of customers, many of whom will be returning to workplaces and schools for the first time in several months.

Regional director at Northern, Stephen Hopkinson, said: “We have brought in as many additional services as possible with the resource we have available and have prioritised routes and times where there is the most significant demand.

"We will do all we can to reintroduce further services when it is possible and appropriate to do so.”