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Tuesday, July 23, 2024

Keswick set to become a ‘virtual railway station’ this summer

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Keswick is set to become a “virtual railway station” this summer with visitors being able to enjoy seamless journeys by train and bus to the picturesque Lake District town.

Avanti West Coast has added Keswick as a destination on rail journey planners so just one ticket covering travel across both modes of transport can be purchased to travel there.

It comes as bus company, Stagecoach, has this summer doubled the frequency of services connecting Penrith and Keswick to 30 minutes.

Both transport operators have worked with tourist board, Cumbria Tourism, on a “Go Car Free” campaign this year, making it easier than ever for visitors to enjoy a more sustainable holiday in the heart of the Lakes without the need for a car.

The creation of a virtual railway station means people can view the timings of the train and bus departures, as well as book a single fully integrated ticket for their entire journey.

Available for travel on the West Coast Main Line, the ticket can be used on Avanti West Coast’s services to Penrith (gateway to the North Lakes) and Stagecoach’s X4 and X5 bus service to Keswick – preventing the need for multiple tickets and transactions.

Tickets are now on sale for travel until early September with more set to be released in the coming weeks for travel dates up to November 1. By offering improved connectivity into the heart of the Lake District and a seamless journey experience across public transport, the partnership between the train company, bus operator and Cumbria Tourism hopes to encourage people to leave their car behind.

With the average journey time from London to the centre of the North Lakes taking three and a half hours by rail and bus, and a single fare costing from £33.50, the ticket aims to make it easier for people to choose sustainable travel options.

It follows the launch of Avanti West Coast’s partnership with Cumbrian cycle business, Arragon’s Cycles, offering an electric bike (e-bike) hire service with free delivery and collection at Penrith – giving visitors a seamless transfer between the train and two wheels.

Sarah Copley, executive director of commercial at Avanti West Coast, said: “We’re proud to serve the gateway to the Lakes and play our part in enabling visitors to reach this beautiful part of the world more easily.

“By bringing together rail and bus travel, entire journeys can now be completed with just one ticket – supporting Cumbria Tourism’s car free campaign. Whether you’re visiting the Lakes for the day or a weekend away, the integrated ticket means you have everything you need for your journey before you board, so it’s even easier to make greener travel choices. We hope it will inspire more people to ditch the car and take the train and bus before exploring the region’s beautiful scenery on foot or public transport.”

Image credit: Avanti West Coast

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