Monday 2 November 2015


Test Trains

A number of Pendolino test trains are scheduled to run on Tuesday night / Wednesday morning.  I believe these are to test the newly completed autotransformer feed system.

5T80 23:24 Edge Hill Depot to Manchester Piccadilly via Lime Street and Chat Moss
5T81 00:41 Manchester P to Manchester P via Chat Moss, Lime Street and Chat Moss
5T82 02:18 Manchester P to Wigan NW via Chat Moss, Lime Street and Golborne
5T83 03:51 Wigan NW to Wigan NW via Golborne, Lime Street and Golborne
5T84 05:19 Wigan NW to Edge Hill Depot via Golborne and Lime Street

I am told that the Wigan runs may be altered to operate via St Helens Central.

If successful, I think this could mark the final completion of Phase 2 at last.  Apart from the footbridge fiasco at Rainhill, which seems to have been forgotten.

Huyton Fourth Track

It may be nothing to do with the railway, but I noticed a gang of people in orange dress in the car park of Huyton Telephone Exchange this morning.  They had a theodolite positioned on the future location of the fourth track.  Could this indicate that work is to begin soon?

Completion of the fourth track will require a slice of land to be removed from the telephone exchange car park (But will just squeeze past the actual building, I think.) and also a longer slice off the side of Huyton bus station.  Permission for these works has been granted in a Transport and Works Act Order.

Once the land has been cleared it will "simply" be a matter of  stringing up some overhead, installing points at Roby Junction, re-modelling Huyton Junction, and altering the signalling.

Unusual Track

The line to Manchester was closed for engineering works yesterday, resulting in the Liverpool to Manchester Airport service being diverted to Wigan North Western, thus giving the west curve at Parkside a rare regular service.

Normally, this route has just one passenger train one way on weekdays, the 06:44 Wigan North Western to Liverpool Lime Street.

At Wigan, the service was reversing in platform 1, not normally used by class 319 units.

I'm not sure why the trains didn't reverse at Earlestown as they did on Saturday.
(Correction:  The service terminated at Earlestown on Saturday, but the trains ran on to Parkside Junction to reverse.)

Update:   For anyone who wants to try out this unusual route, similar operations are scheduled for the first three Sundays in 2016.