Rail engineering upgrades continue in Manchester: Overhead line equipment piling typically has to be carried out overnight for safety reasons while trains are not running

Thursday 18 Mar 2021

Rail engineering upgrades continue in Manchester

Region & Route:
| Eastern: North & East
  • Trackside piling work due to begin in April in Collyhurst and Miles Platting
  • Work to be carried out safely overnight while trains are not running
  • The work is part of early preparations to eventually electrify and re-signal the railway and renew track between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge, via Ashton
  • The project is part of the wider Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU) that will improve train capacity and reliability from Manchester to York, via Huddersfield and Leeds

Network Rail will start its latest engineering work as part of ongoing plans to improve the railway between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge, via Ashton.

On Saturday 24 April, night-time piling will begin between Collyhurst and Miles Platting, which involves installing steel piles next to the railway to support future masts and electric wires.

The work follows improvements that have already begun to reconstruct the railway embankment in Miles Platting to prepare for re-alignment of the track.

An online community event has been organised for Wednesday 14 April, from 18:00 - 19:00, for local residents to find out more about the piling work. Access to it is available by visiting: networkrail.co.uk/manchester-improvements.

The project forms part of the wider Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU) which is a long-term programme that will deliver more frequent and reliable train services along the 76-mile route from Manchester to York, via Huddersfield and Leeds.

Neil Holm, Director at Network Rail for the Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU), said: “The overnight piling is early enabling work as part of future plans to electrify the line between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge, via Ashton, to improve passenger journeys. By its nature, piling can be a disruptive activity and so we would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience it may cause. We will be engaging closely with local communities who live near the railway to keep them informed of progress and what it means to them.”

Electrification, once complete, will enable quieter and more reliable train journeys between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge. The piling is the first phase with other associated works to begin later this year.

Network Rail has sent letters to residents and businesses in Collyhurst and Miles Platting with more details about the planned piling and the wider benefits it will deliver. All piles are expected to be installed along the line between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge by the end of this year.  

In January, Network Rail also announced that further work will take place east of Manchester Victoria station, closing the lines towards Stalybridge and Rochdale, with a 16-day railway closure between 31 July - 15 August 2021. However, travel between these destinations will still be possible, either by train diversion or alternative transport and further details will be released in the coming months.


Notes to Editors

The Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU) is funded by the Department for Transport and delivered by Network Rail, in partnership with contract partners, working alongside train operators. The full extent of the programme is currently in planning, but major work is expected along the full stretch of the Transpennine route.

Contact information

Passengers / community members
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Latest travel advice
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Kathryn Muffett
Communications Executive
Network Rail
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