Latest Rail News

12.12.16

New Rochdale platform sees phase 1 of Calder Valley upgrade completed 

The first phase of upgrades on the Calder Valley line between Manchester Victoria and Leeds via Bradford has been completed on time and on budget, Network Rail has announced.

The upgrades, which took place between the beginning of the year and 28 October, saw new track and signalling installed between Manchester Victoria and Littleborough and a new platform built at Rochdale station.

The new 135m-long bay platform at Rochdale allows trains travelling from Manchester to change direction without impacting on other services, freeing up space for electric trains on the route.

The Calder Valley route was named as one of the highest priority routes for electrification in a report made to the former transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin in March last year by the Northern Electrification Task Force.

Chris Montgomery, programme director at Network Rail, said: “The new bay platform at Rochdale station is an essential piece of the jigsaw in our complex upgrade plan. Benefits are not only seen locally in Rochdale, but across the north  – easing congestion for when the Ordsall Chord reroutes services from Manchester Piccadilly to Manchester Victoria and freeing up space for electric trains that run on a newly electrified railway in and out of Manchester Victoria from December 2017.”

“We are committed to building a better railway with better links between key towns in cities in the north and the work completed on the Calder Valley line is testament to that.”

The Manchester Victoria to Littleborough line was closed five times in April for engineers to install over 1.2km of new track around Rochdale station and remodel existing track to connect the platform to the network.

Upgraded signals along the route will also increase the speed that trains can travel along the line.

Liam Sumpter, regional director at Northern said: “The flexibility the development will provide, alongside other ongoing projects, will eventually allow us to run six trains per hour between Rochdale and Manchester.

“The work at the station is a perfect example of a number of different organisations having listened to local people and then worked together to deliver improvements.”

A celebration of the completion of the first phase of upgrades at Rochdale station yesterday was attended by rail minister Paul Maynard, Rochdale Borough Council, Northern and the Rochdale MP Simon Danzcuk.

During it, Maynard argued that it was clear that the government’s investment across the nation's railways could be seen working to improve travel for passengers.

“This scheme is an important step towards delivering more capacity for people travelling in and out of Manchester and improve journey times along the Calder Valley,” the rail minister added. “This is all part of the government’s plan to bring railways into the 21st century, improving safety, comfort and efficiency.”

The next phase of improvements on the Calder Valley line, between Todmorden and Bradford Interchange, will commence in March 2017. It is hoped that the further work to upgrade track and signalling to increase line speed will see faster journeys between Manchester Victoria and Leeds via Bradford from December 2018.

Comments

Andrew Gwilt   12/12/2016 at 10:42

Will the Manchester Victoria and Leeds via Bradford line be electrified as part of the Northern Powerhouse scheme and to allow electric multiple unit trains to operate between Manchester and Leeds and to extend the electrification to Hull and York.

Richard S Greenwood   12/12/2016 at 17:43

Before the line between Victoria and Rochdale is electrified the purpose of the new platform will be as a terminus for non-electric services into Victoria from the west. Currently most of these block one or other of the four through platforms whist they terminate and depart back towards the west. Electric trains can terminate at Stalybridge in the west facing bay platform there.

Add your comment

 

related

rail technology magazine tv

more videos >

latest rail news

TfL and TfWM join forces in knowledge sharing deal

20/07/2018TfL and TfWM join forces in knowledge sharing deal

A landmark collaboration between two of the UK’s biggest regions has been signed to pave the way to improve rail transport between the area... more >
DfT pledges ‘tough action’ on GTR, contract breach review due this month

19/07/2018DfT pledges ‘tough action’ on GTR, contract breach review due this month

GTR could be at risk of losing control of its franchise as early as this month depending on the outcome of a “hard review” into wheth... more >
Higgins urges Grayling to make decision on Yorkshire HS2 parkway station

19/07/2018Higgins urges Grayling to make decision on Yorkshire HS2 parkway station

HS2 Ltd’s outgoing chairman, Sir David Higgins, has urged the government to make a decision on proposals to create a parkway station on the... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

rail industry focus

View all News

interviews

Transforming travel in the north west

06/02/2018Transforming travel in the north west

RTM’s Josh Mines talks to Robin Davis, head of new trains at TransPennine Express (TPE), about the huge rolling stock change journey the co... more >
Thameslink: Nearing the end of the line

23/01/2018Thameslink: Nearing the end of the line

RTM’s Josh Mines catches up with Mark Somers, project director for Thameslink, on how the final stages of the programme are progressing and... more >
Modernising journeys in north east England

09/11/2017Modernising journeys in north east England

First Hull Trains is about to embark on the biggest fleet overhaul it has delivered since being set up in 2000. Managing director Will Dunnett te... more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. ... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

HS2: collaborate to innovate

17/07/2018HS2: collaborate to innovate

Dr Chris Goodier and Dr Steve Yeomans, of Loughborough University’s Centre for Innovative and Collaborative Construction Engineering (CICE)... more >
read more blog posts from 'the sleeper' >

comment

Elizabeth Line: a greener approach

17/07/2018Elizabeth Line: a greener approach

Howard Smith, operations director for TfL Rail and the Elizabeth Line, outlines the key features of the brand-new, eco-friendly Old Oak Common de... more >
iRail: investing in the future

17/07/2018iRail: investing in the future

The rail industry today faces many challenges, one of those being the skills gap in high- speed rail. However, events like iRail are doing their ... more >
HS2: collaborate to innovate

17/07/2018HS2: collaborate to innovate

Dr Chris Goodier and Dr Steve Yeomans, of Loughborough University’s Centre for Innovative and Collaborative Construction Engineering (CICE)... more >
Hydrogen trains: bringing the success story to the UK

17/07/2018Hydrogen trains: bringing the success story to the UK

Hydrogen-powered trains are already a reality in other rail networks in Europe. Now, working alongside Eversholt Rail, Alstom UK plans to bring t... more >