The Northampton - Market Harborough line.

This 14 mile mainly double track line finally closed to all traffic on October 16th 1981. Regular passenger services albeit only the

Euston - Kettering - Nottingham - Leeds - Carlisle - Glasgow and return sleeper working ceased beyond Nottingham in 1973.

Traffic on the line consisted of coal, parcels and speedlink traffic in later years. The line saw heavy excursion traffic especially

for Wembley fixtures plus local Merrymakers and a few railtours.

Sample workings

5016 (later 24016) Northampton - Leicester (via Market Harborough) leg of an RCTS tour on 260366

1960    (later 47514/703) 2250 Glasgow - Euston sleeper (via Nottingham, MH and Northampton) on 190271, E3051 (82004) forward from Northampton

44008 Toton - Willesden coal to Northampton on 270973

47524  Newcastle - Wembley footex (via Leicester, MH and Northampton) on 280276 Man C 2 Newcastle 1 League cup finalc

45008 replaced 86250 at Northampton with the "Highwayman" Railtour from Euston to Carlisle on 140479

New uses - the footpath/cycleway

Thanks to Dave J for the phots and gen

The line now forms a linear cycling/walking route linking Northampton with Market Harborough with many interesting features en route and is highly recommended

120515mhr.jpg Market Harborough down platform where the branch joined the main line at Well Mill Lane Jn

120515mhar.jpg Clear road ahead South of Harborough, 20's on coal trains no more

120515keltr.jpg Kelmarsh Tunnel is the 2nd long tunnel

120515mp8r.jpg Milepost 8 North of Pitsford

New uses - Preservation

The Northampton and Lamport railway currently operate a short section of the route and have a welcome pro diesel policy. Services began on November 19th 1995. Classes 25/26/27/31/37/45/47 and 56 have all

been based on the line over the years but just 31289 and 47205 (former Cricklewood local machine) are currently present but are operational. 47205 is expected to work all trains

this coming Sunday June 28th 2015 for example.

 

19110547205r.jpg 47205 with headboards that say it all really at Pitsford on 191105

19110545118r.jpg Recreating the scene, 45118 passes with a down shuttle on 191105

01011231403br.jpg 31289 disguised as 31403 at the South end of the line with a "Mince pie" special clagging nicely on 010112

 

More to follow, any Northampton - Market Harborough memories very welcome.

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