Next phase of Railway Upgrade Plan comes to South Yorkshire this bank holiday: Sheffield Station

Monday 11 Apr 2016

Next phase of Railway Upgrade Plan comes to South Yorkshire this bank holiday

Region & Route:

Network Rail will invest £15m this May bank holiday to upgrade signalling in Sheffield and other parts of South Yorkshire to provide more reliable train services for passengers.

The investment will see the control of signals – the traffic lights of the railway – around Sheffield, Rotherham, Swinton and Mexborough moved to the state-of-the-art Rail Operating Centre (ROC) in York which already controls the signalling across large parts of Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.

The complex electrical work will take place over the bank holiday weekend of Sunday 1 May and Monday 2 May meaning some services won’t run with buses replacing trains.

Passengers are urged to check their journey plans before they travel, with all lines set to reopen on Tuesday 3 May.

Rob McIntosh, route managing director for Network Rail said: “Moving the signalling to the ROC is an important step in our £40bn Railway Upgrade Plan to provide a bigger, better more reliable railway for passengers and means that passenger and freight services become more reliable, while also helping to bring down the cost of running the railway.

“Although there is never a good time to disrupt passengers, we know that fewer people travel over bank holidays and we deliberately avoided doing this project at Christmas to help support Meadowhall and the region’s retail economy. I thank passengers for their patience and understanding while this upgrade takes place and assure them that the long term benefit will be worth the few days of inconvenience.”

Jake Kelly, Managing Director for East Midlands Trains, said: “We have worked closely with Network Rail and other train operators to make sure that our customers can keep on moving throughout these works.  As well as the major replacement bus service in place on Sunday 1 May, we’ll have extra staff at Sheffield station to help customers with their journeys.

“We would strongly advise anybody planning to travel through Sheffield to check their journey in advance online.”

Alex Hynes, Managing Director for Northern, said: “Investment in infrastructure helps contribute to a real improvement in performance and reliability for our customers on this line of route. Our advice to customers is to check before travelling and allow additional time where they can.”

Transpennine Express', Area Customer Service Manager, Alison Murray said: "It's never ideal to close the railway but these improvement works will enhance the future reliability for our customers, meaning less disruption. We are working hard with Network Rail and other train operators to provide customers with information about their journeys and where necessary alternative travel options. Some journeys will be operated by replacement coach and I would urge all customers to check their travel details."

The vast majority of the work required to ‘recontrol’ the signals from their current location at Sheffield Power Signal Box through to York ROC was carried out before Christmas without disruption to services, and teams will work 24/7 from Saturday night until Tuesday morning to complete the final steps in the process which require the tracks to be free of trains.

Passengers are urged to check before they travel at Sheffield Supertram will continue to run and serve all locations, including Sheffield and Meadowhall. Travel South Yorkshire  will make a full list of services available at

Notes to editors

  • The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail’s £40bn spending plan for Britain’s railways for the five year period up to 31 March 2019. The plan is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to tremendous growth the railways have seen – a doubling of passengers in the past twenty years. The plan will deliver a bigger, better railway with more trains, longer trains, faster trains with more infrastructure, more reliable infrastructure and better facilities for passengers, especially at stations.
  • A full list of services is available below. For further information visit

0001 Sunday 30 April to 0530 Monday 1 May

Cross Country

  • Reading – Newcastle terminate at Derby
  • Plymouth – Edinburgh – replacement buses between Chesterfield and Wakefield Westgate adding up to an hour onto journeys.

TransPennine Express

  • Cleethorpes – Manchester Airport start and terminate at Doncaster. Replacement buses between Doncaster and Manchester airport adding approximately 40 minutes onto journeys.
  • Extended Newcastle – Manchester services to Liverpool via Warrington central

East Midlands Trains

  • Nottingham – Liverpool services start and terminate at Chesterfield. Replacement buses between Chesterfield – Stockeport/Sheffield connecting with trains
  • Sheffield/Leeds/York – St Pancras start and terminate at Derby. Replacement buses Sheffield – East Midlands Parkway


  • Nottingham – Leeds/Sheffield and Huddersfield/Sheffield – Leeds (via Barnsley) start and terminate at Barnsley. Replacement buses Barnsley – Sheffield/Nottingham
  • Sheffield – Leeds (via Rotherham) start and terminate at Doncaster with a connecting bus service Sheffield – Moorthorpe
  • Sheffield – Hull/Wolds Coast start and terminate at Doncaster with a connecting bus service Sheffield – Doncaster
  • Sheffield – Lincoln and Sheffield – York all replaced by buses
  • Sheffield – Manchester start and terminate at Chinley. Replacement buses Chinley – Sheffield

0530 Monday 2 May – 0530 Tuesday 3 May

Cross Country

  • Reading – Newcastle terminate at Derby
  • Plymouth – Edinburgh – northbound divert via Barnsley, running approx. 10 mins later between Leeds and Edinburgh. Southbound services will arrive slightly later into Derby but will then run as scheduled.

TransPennine Express

  • Manchester Airport – Sheffield and Doncaster – Cleethorpes replacement buses between Doncaster and Sheffield adding approximately 45 minutes onto journeys.

East Midlands Trains

  • Southbound trains from Leeds leave approximately 15 minutes earlier as they divert via Barnsley. Northbound services via Barnsley run later to Leeds by approximately 30 minutes.


  • Nottingham – Leeds/Sheffield (via Barnsley) some minor changes to the timetable
  • Sheffield – Leeds (via Rotherham) start and terminate at Moorthorpe. Replacement buses Sheffield - Moorthorpe
  • Sheffield – Hull/Wolds Coast start and terminate at Doncaster with a connecting bus service Sheffield – Doncaster
  • Sheffield –– York all replaced by buses
  • Sheffield – Lincoln and Sheffield – Manchester

Contact information

Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Network Rail press office - Toby Higgins
Head of Communications
Network Rail
0330 333 1800

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.

Usually, there are almost five 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.

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