Track works, via istock

New track installation between Sheffield and Manchester breaks ground

The £145m upgrade to accommodate for an increased number of high speed trains between Sheffield and Manchester has begun, with Network Rail confirming 340m of track has been installed.

This new track will act to relieve the consistent bottleneck on the Hope Valley railway line, seeing engineers laying the track for a new “passing loop” which will accommodate slower trains to alternate between the new track, thus allowing faster trains to continue with their journeys at the higher speed.

During the process of this track installation, there was a forced closure to the line through the Hope Valley, allowing the engineers time to work around the clock using heavy duty machinery such as heavy lift excavators, a dozer and a tamper, that could have been hazardous if live services were to continue.

Rail minister Huw Merriman said:

 “These vital improvements will transform journeys on the historic Hope Valley line, making services faster and more reliable for passengers in the North.

“Backed by £137M government funding, the upgrades will boost connections between two thriving Northern cities while ensuring our stations are inclusive and accessible for all.”

In 2018 the Department for Transport granted a Transport & Works Order for the project, with hopes that the scheme would get underway soon after, however progress stalled until March of last year when the Government committed £137m of investment for the works, which officially began in May 2022.

Network Rail senior sponsor Graeme Whitehead said:

 “Installing the first pieces of track for this important passing loop is a major milestone for the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade.

“The upgrade of this popular route will help to alleviate historic bottlenecks, bringing faster and more reliable travel to local passengers and long-distance travellers.”

These track works between Sheffield and Manchester come as part of a package of works to accommodate for the Northern Powerhouse Rail route upgrade, which has seen further progression since the start of the year, with more than 700m of new track has been installed in Dore & Totley as part of the upgrade. A bridge extension has also been completed to facilitate the second line of track, accompanying a new platform and footbridge for accessibility.

Want to know more about the opportunities to become a key supplier to the UK rail industry? Attend TransCityRail and access an exclusive marketplace of buyers from Network Rail, HS2, Train Operators, Major Contractors, and all other tiers of the supply chain. For more information and to secure your place click here.  


RTM Feb/Mar 24

Rail station: Metamorphosis

This issue highlights the latest topics within the rail industry, from new West Midlands railway stations to decarbonisation Govia Thameslink Railway.

More articles...

View all
TransCityRail Banner


Mids \ 29 02 24
South \ 11 07 24
North \ 07 11 24

TransCityRail is a series of regional, interactive and insightful events across the country bringing together leaders, collaborators, problem solvers and innovators in a creative and invigorating way.

This series of events supports and informs the whole of the rail industry and connects suppliers with buyers, specifiers, leaders and decision-makers looking to procure a wide variety of innovative products and services for their region.


TransCityRail SOUTH

The South of England accounts for a significant portion of the UK’s rail investment strategy and is home to 7 sub-national transport bodies that have all placed rail infrastructure at the centre of their strategic investment plans.

Every year industry leaders from Network Rail, HS2, Train Operators, major contractors and transport bodies converge at the TransCityRail SOUTH conference, exhibition and networking dinner for a day of collaboration, conversation and engagement.

At this year's event, we're discussing...