Published on : Wednesday, June 15, 2016
With under a week to go before major work starts to upgrade the railway in Chorley, passengers travelling between Preston and Bolton on evenings and at weekends are being urged to check before they travel and plan their journeys.
The railway through Chorley station will be electrified as part of Network Rail’s Railway Upgrade Plan to provide passengers with better, more reliable journeys. It is part of a £1bn+ Northern Programmes investment which will enable faster, more frequent trains through the area from December 2017.
Track near to Chorley station will be lowered to accommodate new overhead line equipment which will power electric trains between Manchester and Preston via Bolton from the end of 2017. Both of Chorley’s platforms will be rebuilt and the roofs over two subways inside and next to the station will be replaced to support the increased weight from an increase in train services.
A temporary platform will be in operation for passengers travelling north towards Preston from Saturday 18 June while platform 1 is rebuilt and extended. Platform 2, which serves trains towards Manchester, is being rebuilt in sections and will remain open to passengers throughout the project.
To deliver the long-term benefits, the line between Preston and Bolton will be closed every weekend from Saturday, 18 June to Sunday, 2 October (inclusive) while the upgrades take place. This will mean changes to weekend and some mid-week evening train services in the area while the work is carried out.
Noel Connolly, Network Rail’s head of programme management, said: “We have worked closely with Northern (the train operator) so that passengers are aware of changes to weekend and evening train services between Preston and Bolton while we upgrade the railway through Chorley.
“This is essential work and I’d like to thank passengers in advance for their understanding. To deliver improvements to the railway, significant engineering work is required to move and lower the track through Chorley and there is no other option but to close the railway line at weekends while this work is carried out.
“The upgrade and wider investment will result in a better, faster, more reliable railway that will serve passengers for many decades to come and help boost the economy across the north of England.”
Some of the work involved will have to take place overnight and, while everything will be done to minimise disruption to local residents, there will be some noise as a result.
Alex Hynes, Managing Director for Northern, said: “Many of our customers in this region are looking forward to the benefits electric trains will bring to their journeys with us; more seats, faster journeys and better trains.
“This essential work at Chorley will ensure electric trains can operate between Manchester and Preston via Bolton from the end of 2017 – an exciting prospect for many of our customers. We’d like to remind them to check before they travel and speak to our colleagues at Chorley for the latest up-to-date information on the project.”
Station and community drop-in sessions, leaflets, webpages and posters have all been made available and have been used to raise awareness amongst passengers and residents about why the work is necessary and the benefits it will bring as well as what the alternative travel options are.
Source:- Network Rail