Sunday, 3 May 2015


Engineering diversions have routed Liverpool to Euston services via the L & M today, so we have an hourly service of Pendolinos using our new electrification.  Here's 1A20 10:43 Liverpool Lime Street High Level to Euston cruising through a rather grey Huyton.

Saturday, 2 May 2015

Early Electric Two

This morning, as last Saturday, a 319 worked the 06.00 Liverpool to Wigan and 07.00 return.  This week 319362 "Northern Powerhouse" did the honours, here's a shot of it at St Helens Central on the return run, kindly supplied by Paul Gaskell.
So for phase 2 that's only Manchester Victoria still waiting for a passenger working.  Any day now?

Apparently ten 319s should be diagrammed from the start of the new timetable so we can expect to see a lot more use on stopping trains soon.

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Late Electric

And this evening, an eight car train with 319364 leading 319367 whizzed through Huyton on 5Z19 20:22 Allerton Diesel Multiple Unit Depot to Manchester Victoria, marking, as far as I know, the first electric working from Ordsall Lane Junction to Victoria.  So, with the possible exception of paperwork signoff for this last section, that's the whole of phase two up and running.  (Assuming this test is successful.)

Oh, and some autotransformer work remains to be completed as well.

Saturday, 25 April 2015

Early Electric

I understand that 319363 worked 2F52 06.00 Liverpool Lime Street to Wigan North Western and the 2F57 07.03 return this morning, before moving onto Airport runs.

This marks the first electric passenger working on the Wigan line, and another important step in the progress of phase two.

Only Victoria remains to be completed, and there appears to be an intriguing test train of some sort booked for this Sunday evening.  See RTT for details.

Hopefully, with the new crew and stock rosters for the new timetable which starts on 17 May, we will see a substantial increase in the numbers of EMUs out and about on all parts of phase two, albeit on unaltered diesel schedules.

Thursday, 16 April 2015

News in Brief

I've recently been a little negligent in following the news on this blog, so here's a few headlines and updates:
  • The Pendolino test runs which were aborted at the end of March were retried later in the week and were apparently successful.  Pendolinos are scheduled to run between Liverpool and Euston via Manchester on both the bank holiday weekends in May.
  • One autotransformer wire has been installed on the up side through Huyton, the down side is still missing.  Correction:  Actually both sides are now up, the down side on temporary pulleys.
  • A number of 319 test runs have been performed on the Huyton-Wigan line.  I am not aware that ORR have formally signed off the route.  (But see below)
  • "Treat as Live" notices have gone up for Ordsall Lane Jn to Victoria, dated Sunday 19 April.  I don't know if any finishing work is required but hopefully we will see MENTOR and then 319 tests before long. 
Finally, the rumour mill reports that on this coming Saturday (18 April) a 319 will do a Liverpool to Wigan and return passenger working and then move onto a Liverpool/Manchester Airport diagram.  Another 319 is also expected to be on Airport runs.  If this happens it will be the first electric passenger working on the Wigan line, and also the first Saturday runs, I think.

Update, Saturday:  The 319 to Wigan was replaced by a diesel, reportedly due to overhead line problems at Huyton.  An electric airport diagram is running, I'm told.