Network Rail says its engineers are about to start a once-in-a-generation package of work around Stalybridge station to drive down delays and deliver a better, more reliable and greener railway for passengers.
Over 26 days, the Transpennine Route Upgrade will completely remodel the tracks on the approach to the station, installing over two kilometres of new track and 23 new signals, upgrading 13 crossovers, and fitting overhead line equipment.
This means that from Saturday 11 March to Wednesday 5 April, there will be some changes to services. Trains will still run between Manchester and Leeds via the Calder Valley route, and services between Huddersfield and Leeds will continue as normal, calling at all stations.
Replacement buses will also keep passengers moving between Manchester (including Manchester Airport) and Huddersfield and between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge.
Passengers are being urged to check before they travel via National Rail or their train operator’s website and to allow extra time as journeys will take slightly longer.
Hannah Lomas, Industry Programme Director for Transpennine Route Upgrade said: “Over the 26-days, our engineers will work around the clock to complete these key upgrades in Stalybridge, bringing us one step closer to being able to run electric trains through the area by the middle of the decade.
“To complete it safely, it does mean some passengers will be impacted between February and May. We’ve worked closely with TransPennine Express and Northern to keep passengers moving via both diversionary routes and rail replacement buses.
“We’re encouraging anyone that’s planning on travelling during the main upgrades or preparation weekends to visit National Rail or their train operator’s website to plan their journey.”
Once fully completed, more trains will be able to move in and out of Stalybridge station more easily with better reliability.
It’s part of the multi-billion-pound Transpennine Route Upgrade, which will bring faster, more frequent, greener trains with more seats available for passengers travelling between Manchester, Huddersfield, Leeds and York.
Chris Nutton, Major Projects Director for TransPennine Express said: “These upgrade works are a vital step towards delivering faster, more reliable and sustainable services between Manchester and York.
“Whilst the engineering work takes place around Stalybridge there will be a number of changes to TransPennine Express services across our network – and we’d advise our customers to check carefully for the latest advice before they travel on our website www.tpexpress.co.uk/travel-updates/changes-to-train-times. Updates will also be available on our social media channels. Our teams across from across the industry will be on hand at stations to assist customers with their journeys.”
Rob Warnes, Strategic Development Director for Northern said: ”We’d like to thank our customers for their patience whilst Stalybridge station is closed for this work. These upgrades will pave the way for Northern to run faster, greener electric trains to Stalybridge in the future. We’re working hard to keep our customers moving throughout the duration of the closure, and we’d like to remind customers to check before they travel.”
Additional preparation work will also take place before and after the 26 days, including on 18/19 February, 25/26 February, 4/5 March, 15/16 April, 22/23 April, 29/30 April and 20/21 May. Passengers should check before they travel for the latest updates.
Photo credit: Network Rail