Friday, 4 August 2017


At Huyton a further length of the fourth line, from the current end of rails to the far end of the telephone exchange, has received sleepers, but no rails yet.
Update:  By Sunday rails were in place on these sleepers, and a number of S&C track panels were stacked on them.

Meanwhile, at Lime Street, the 'hole' which will eventually become the two new platforms, has been almost completely excavated.

Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Platform Work at Roby and Huyton

I was somewhat surprised last week to see that all the edge stones on the recently built platform 4 at Roby have been lifted, before anyone had a chance to board a train there.
I don't know the reason for this, perhaps it was built in the wrong place, or the requirements have since changed.

At Huyton, platform 4 will be closed along with the northern access to the station, from 7 August.  Some pallets of building materials have been delivered to the platform, suggesting that similar work is to be undertaken here.

Friday, 21 July 2017

New Timetable - Electric trains! - Ordsall Chord

This week the first details of the new timetable, valid from Sunday 10 December this year until Saturday 19 May 2018 trickled into my database, so here's the results of a very quick scan.

The service at Huyton is pretty similar to the current one, but with many trains re-timed by a few minutes.  The exciting news is that they are, at last, timed for 100mph Class 319 units instead of Class 142 pacers.  This results in slightly faster running times, for example 3 minutes less for a stopping train from Wigan to Lime Street and 5 minutes saved Manchester Victoria to Lime Street.

Of course, a change much more important in the scheme of things is the opening of the Ordsall Chord, with trains from Oxford Road to Leeds (Via Victoria and Bradford.)   Here's an example:

Another important change is the appearance of electric services at Bolton.  Only local ones so far, there aren't any Scotland services.

Don't forget, as I always say in posts about new timetables, the data is well outside Network Rail's twelve week window and so must be considered provisional.

Friday, 7 July 2017

Lime Street Remodelling

The timetable for the first week of the autumn works at Liverpool Lime Street arrived in my database this morning.  Update:  I have added details of later in the period as they were released.

Here's a summary of the effects on "our" lines:

On Saturday 30 September and Sunday 01 October buses run between Lime Street and St Helens Central and between Lime Street and Manchester.

On Monday 02 to Sunday 08 October the buses are to St Helens Central and St Helens Junction.

From Monday 09 until Saturday 14 and Monday 16 to Friday 20 October, a modified service will run with two trains an hour all stations Lime Street to/from Wigan, one of which is extended to Preston; and two trains an hour all stations to/from Manchester Victoria one of which skips Patricroft and Eccles.  After about 20:00 buses replace trains between Lime Street and Huyton.
Note that these will be the only trains at Lime Street High Level, services on other routes will run from South Parkway or Hunt's Cross.

On Sunday 15 October one train an hour each way between Lime Street and Manchester Airport, and one train an hour each way between Lime Street and Preston.  These will be the only trains at Lime Street.

On Saturday 21 October, two trains an hour all stations Huyton to/from Wigan, one of which is extended to Preston; and two trains an hour to/from Manchester Oxford Road, one of which is fast between Newton and Oxford Road.  No trains at all at Lime Street.
On Sunday 22 October one train an hour each way between Huyton and Manchester Airport, and one train an hour each way between Huyton and Preston, with buses between Lime Street and Huyton.  No trains at all at Lime Street.

On Monday 23 October, hopefully normal service will be resumed.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Progress Report

Liverpool Lime Street

Demolition of the post office building is complete and the digging out of the new tracks is under way.

The Virgin buildings which also occupy the location of the new platforms have been vacated and are now also surrounded by hoardings ready for demolition.  Virgin, meanwhile, have a new office on the concourse.

Huyton Fourth Track

I was surprised to see a track machine parked on the fourth track near Roby station:
This is a Plasser & Theurer 08-16-SP tamper, I'm told.  How it reached this totally isolated piece of railway I don't know.