Saturday, February 22, 2020
SHOPPERS URGED TO 'LEAP' ON UNIQUE BRIGG LINE TRAINS ON A DAY WHEN IT'S ALL CHANGE FOR OUR LOCAL SERVICE
Brigg railway station has a very sparse passenger train service - Saturdays only and then just three trains in each direction calling between Sheffield and Cleethorpes. So a very apt Leap Year promotion has been arranged for February 29 - the rarest date in the calendar, only encountered every fourth year.
The promotion on the final Saturday this month will encourage people from other communities along the Sheffield-Cleethorpes line, in South Yorkshire, North Nottinghamshire, West Lindsey and northern Lincolnshire, to take the train and visit Brigg, where local businesses will be glad of their custom, including eateries and niche shops.
The Business Partnership Rail Group has teamed up with a graphic designer to produce a poster encouraging people "to leap on the unique Saturday only train service and visit Brigg."
The graphic, seen here, gives the train times and prices from Sheffield, Worksop, Retford, Gainsborough, Kirton Lindsey, Grimsby and Cleethorpes.
February 29 will be the last day when the Northern company runs trains along the iconic Brigg Line. After the final train has completed its journey on Saturday, it's a case of all change for this service with 're-nationalisation' taking place.
The Department for Transport says the government will operate the Northern Rail franchise from March 1, 2020, and adds: "Passenger journeys will not be affected."
While the government is taking an interest in railways in our part of the country, Brigg Blog thinks it should consider improving what's on offer at our station.
Most stations, including the one at Barnetby, now have very helpful display screens on their platforms which give waiting passengers constant updates about train arrival times and delays, backed up by loudspeaker announcements.
Sadly, such facilities have yet to be installed at Brigg station.
Recently, when signalling issues (beyond the Northern company's control) delayed the first Saturday morning train by 50 minutes, there was no way to inform people waiting on platform one at Brigg station.
Brigg Blog was very fortunate on this particular Saturday; with a tight connection to catch at Barnetby on our way to Newark, we decided to hire the CallConnect dial-a-ride bus service to take us from Brigg to the village station... for a bargain £2.10p!
In view of the unexpected 50-minute delay, this proved to be a very wise move.
However, when we came back from Newark via Lincoln, the final Northern service of the day from Barnetby was on time and we arrived at Brigg station before 8pm, as planned.
The government wants to improve punctuality and reduce cancellations on services currently run by Northern. However, some of these are down to reasons beyond the control of the train operator. Passengers will be hoping for better things after March 1 but it will take time.