Special rail services have run between Newcastle and Morpeth in advance of the reintroduction of passenger trains on the Northumberland Line.
The UK's operator of last resort (DOLH) has taken over the Northern franchise (1 March) after serious problems with services on the network.
The Northern refurbishment works are now two thirds complete. As part of its franchise agreement Northern is refurbishing 243 trains.
Northern continues its fleet roll-out with the introduction of new trains for Blackpool starting 9 September, running services to Liverpool.
Northern has introduced an additional 15 CAF Civity diesel trains on its network as part of its programme to replace its Pacer train fleet.
Given the DfT's policy that all trains must meet accessibilty requirements by 1 January 2020, Northern Pacer trains are being retired.
First nine trains for Northern will enter service on 1 July. These are from a total order of 101 trains with CAF, a mix of EMUs and DMUs.