Multi-billion pound Great North Rail Project transforming travel: Ordsall 1

Friday 6 Oct 2017

Multi-billion pound Great North Rail Project transforming travel

London North Western
  • Over 2,000 more services a week to carry 40,000 more customers by 2020.
  • Rail is forecasted to support 27,000 more jobs in Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester by 2022.
  • Better rail connections bringing northern cities closer together right now.

Train customers and taxpayers are today benefiting from the Great North Rail Project (GNRP), the largest upgrade since Victorian times - and there’s more to come between now and 2020.

Working together, Northern, TransPennine Express, Network Rail, Rail North, Rail Delivery Group and the Department for Transport are investing billions of pounds of improvements as part of Britain’s Railway Upgrade Plan to transform train travel across the north of England.

Paul Plummer, chief executive of the Rail Delivery Group, which brings together train companies and Network Rail to improve the railway, said: “Working together, Britain's rail companies are delivering the investment and improvement that passengers want and which drives economic growth across towns and communities across the North. More trains on the key routes serving our biggest cities will provide benefits for generations to come."

David Hoggarth, director of Rail North, speaking on behalf of all GNRP members, said: “GNRP is creating opportunities for people across the north by bringing its towns and cities closer together with faster, more reliable train services. Businesses now have larger talent pools to choose from. New jobs are being created. New possibilities are emerging.”

By 2020, there will be over 2,000 extra services a week, 500 new carriages with space for 40,000 more passengers a day. Brand-new or completely refurbished trains will have better on-board entertainment and catering facilities, and all of the outdated Pacer trains will be gone.

And by 2022, almost 27,000 new jobs are forecasted to have been created in Leeds, Liverpool and Manchester, connecting people in the communities on the rail routes that serve them with new opportunities, according to the latest analysis by the Rail Delivery Group (RDG).

From December 2017, there will be extra services between Blackburn and Manchester, and between Bishop Auckland and Darlington, as well as improved Sunday services across the region. There will be more services from Cleethorpes to Manchester airport, too.

Next year, customers can look forward to improved journeys as upgrades between Manchester and Blackpool, via Bolton and Preston are completed. More improvements will follow in 2019 and 2020.

Other major GNRP schemes include the new Ordsall Chord which, from December 2017, will link Manchester’s main stations enabling new journeys across the north. Customers as far afield as Newcastle, Bradford and Rochdale, will benefit from faster, more frequent journeys to Manchester Airport.

Network Rail, Rail North and the Department for Transport are also developing options for significant upgrades to the Transpennine route between Manchester and York/Selby, to deliver better services for passengers. Options will be submitted to the Department for Transport in December this year. The Transpennine Route Upgrade aims to deliver faster, longer, more frequent and more reliable services across the north of England, from Newcastle, Hull and York towards Manchester and Liverpool via Leeds.

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About Network Rail

We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

Every day, there are more than 4.7 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.

We are building a better railway for a better Britain.

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