Latest Rail News

30.04.15

Farnworth Tunnel electrification work to start next week

Farnworth Tunnel closes for six months from next week as Network Rail rebuild it as part of the Manchester to Preston electrification project.

The closure of one of the two tunnels for rebuilding between Saturday 2 May and Sunday 4 October will cause major disruption to services between Bolton and Manchester, with an amended timetable in action.

The other tunnel will remain open, to allow some train services to continue to operate.

The existing tunnels are too small for the overhead lines needed so one of them is being filled in with concrete and then re-bored, making it large enough for both sets of railway lines and the overhead equipment.

Network Rail will also be reconstructing a retaining wall, reconstructing a road bridge, making changes to both platforms at Farnworth Station, installing new track between Bolton and Moses Gate, making alterations at Moses Gate Station and replacing a pedestrian level crossing near Kearsley with a footbridge.

Around 7,000 people travel on the route between Preston and Manchester in peak times with around 2,000 joining at Bolton. Passengers are being asked to avoid travelling through Bolton and travel via Preston and Wigan if possible.

A spokesperson on behalf of Northern Rail and First TransPennine Express commented: “The work will lay the foundations for a much improved railway, where in the future we are able to provide more capacity, faster journeys and a greener travel experience.

“However this engineering project is extremely complex and we appreciate the disruption that it will cause to customers’ journeys.”

As well as the amended weekday service, there will be no trains running between Bolton and Manchester during weekends until the railway reopens on Monday 5 October.

Tell us what you think – have your say below or email opinion@railtechnologymagazine.com

Comments

Kevin Bennett   08/05/2015 at 20:56

Seems like a good option - for tunnelling contractors! How about a method that cuts strengthening ribs into the roof of the tunnel, that then allows the crown to be ground back until sufficient clearance is achieved? And futher, do one rib per night (cut and replace) so the tunnel can still be used during the day. Interested? Call Freyssinet 07788 658721. Its been done before many times.

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