Rail line at Hatfield & Stainforth re-opens Monday 8 July 2013

  12 July 2013

Passenger and freight trains are once again running through Hatfield & Stainforth.


The railway was forced to close

after a spoil heap slip at Hatfield Colliery

and engineers have relocated

approximately one million cubic metres of material

in order to restore services.



Phil Verster, route managing director for Network Rail, said:

“The reopening of this line is a real cause for celebration.

"I thank passengers and our freight customers

"for their patience during this very difficult time.

“Engineers on site have worked tirelessly to complete the repair.


"Thanks are also due to the planning and support teams

throughout the rail industry,

"who have successfully delivered such a complex project.”



Northern Rail is running an hourly service between Doncaster and Goole, and Doncaster and Scunthorpe.

Rail replacement buses will continue to run to support the Northern train services until Monday 29 July.

However, these buses will be retimed so passengers are advised to check the interim timetables.

First TransPennine Express is operating the full timetable, which was in place before the colliery landslip.


Services are running

between Cleethorpes and Doncaster/Sheffield/Manchester Airport

and between Hull/Brough/Selby and Leeds/Manchester.


A spokesperson for Northern Rail and First TransPennine Express added:


“The earlier than anticipated restoration of the line through Hatfield and Stainforth

is great news for rail passengers in the region.


"The scale and complexity of the engineering project

are unprecedented and the resumption of passenger services

is credit to the professionalism and expertise of Network Rail.


"As a rail industry we have worked hard to make sure that

customers have had all the correct information

and the disruption has been minimised.

"We would like to thank customers for their patience and understanding

and we will continue to work tirelessly

to ensure a full and normal service

is restored as soon as possible.



Northern Rail has 182 drivers, who potentially operate the route – FTPE has 15,

and therefore the staged-introduction of Northern services

is to allow route-learning of drivers,

whose route knowledge has lapsed during the period of disruption.


Work on site at Hatfield Colliery is not complete

with engineers likely to remain on site until the end of the year.


Their work has been meticulously planned to allow safe running of trains while it is completed.

The spoil heaps continue to be monitored as a precaution.


To view the most recent photos of the on-going work to reintroduce services to the line, click here


or scroll down to view all photos showing the very complex process involved in the restoration of services




Arial View


Approximately 1 million cubic metres of material needs to be moved by Hatfield Colliery

before the rail line east of Doncaster can be repaired.


While the colliery moves the spoil, Network Rail teams are clearing damaged vegetation,

completing detailed land investigations and finalising designs for the repair.



Phil Verster, route managing director for Network Rail, said:

“Because of the nature of the material in the spoil heap

"the work to stabilise it and remove the material from the railway is complex and will take some time.


“Our estimate for the completed repair remains early July but this is an estimate.

"I thank passengers for their continued patience

and assure them we are doing everything we can to restore a full service as quickly as possible.”




Selby Swing bridge is due for renewal this summer (28 July to 9 September).

Network Rail teams are currently planning that this will go ahead as scheduled.


In the event that the work at Stainforth is still underway

this will limit the diversionary routes available to passenger services.

(See Map below)


Work is being carried out with the train operators

to identify alternative arrangements during this time.

Detailed information will be published as soon as it is confirmed.


Additional photos below:

Colliery works following spoil heap slip










Following spoil heap slip at Hatfield Colliery










Damage to lineside equipment and vegetation following spoil heap slip










Following spoil heap slip at Hatfield Colliery








Network Rail engineers are beginning the slow process

of removing spoil from Hatfield Colliery,

which has severely damaged the railway in Stainforth.




Photos below showing damage to track following the spoil heap slip

Photos courtesy Network Rail





Now that the spoil heap has stopped moving,

the teams have conducted more detailed surveys of the damage

and are planning the work, which needs to be completed

to restore rail services through the area.





Phil Verster, route managing director for Network Rail, said:


“I want to thank passengers and our freight customers for their patience in this difficult time.

"In recent days it has become apparent that the damage to the railway is a lot worse than we originally thought

"and the repair work will be more complex.


"Clearly our priority is to get rail services running again as quickly as possible but we need to do so safely.


“The complexities of this job mean that it will take 16 to 18 weeks to complete, approximately until the end of June.

"However we will not be in a position to confirm this timeline until more extensive investigations have been completed in the next few days.

"We will do everything possible to reduce the time it will take to get the railway back.

“We are working closely with the train operators to minimise the disruption to passengers.


"We have also completed work, which will better allow the flow of essential coal and steel freight trains

to run from Scunthorpe and Immingham.”






Richard Allan, area director at Northern Rail comments:


“During the forthcoming weeks, keeping passengers informed and on the move is our priority.

"We've been working closely with our colleagues at Network Rail and First TransPennine Express

"to ensure they are aware of how this disruption can affect their journey.


"We will continue to keep passengers updated at our stations and on our trains

"as well as online via our website and Twitter feed.


"I'd like to thank everyone for their continued patience"



First TransPennine Express have:

- put in place an amended train and bus timetable - full details - http://www.tpexpress.co.uk/travel-advice/

- half hourly bus service between Doncaster and Scunthorpe with additional buses to ensure everyone can make connections

- express bus services in place between Doncaster and Cleethorpes to ensure customers can make onward connections to London and the south

- additional management and support staff have been deployed to stations

- all social media and communications channels have been updated with the latest information

- ticket restrictions have been lifted meaning passengers can travel at any point on their booked day of travel





Nick Donovan, FTPE managing director said:


“The damage caused by the spoil heap is extensive and Network Rail have advised us

"that the line will not be open for use until approximately the end of June.

"This is clearly not ideal for rail passengers and disruption to journeys is likely to be significant.

"We have published an amended timetable and are providing a half hourly bus replacement service in either direction

"and we have additional staff at stations to help customers with their journeys.


"In addition we have listened to the feedback we have received,

and have put in place express bus services between Doncaster and Cleethorpes,

"which allow customers to make onward rail connections.

"Unfortunately there is currently no alternative rail route available to us (see above map)

"although we will continue to assess and update our plans as needed.



"I want to thank customers for their patience and understanding and provide an assurance

" that we will continue to work with Network Rail to return rail services as soon as is safely possible.


"I would encourage all customers to check the details of their journey before travelling."










Excavating the Up Fast line

Hatfield Colliery landslip

22 April 2013










Progress at site affected by spoil heap slip

at Hatfield Colliery

26 June 2013










Progress at site affected by spoil heap slip

at Hatfield Colliery

26 June 2013









Route proving train









First passenger train through Hatfield & Stainforth

on 8 July 2013










First freight train through Hatfield & Stainforth

on 8 July 2013



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Rachel Lowe

Division Media Relations Manager (North East)

Telephone 01904 383180 Fax Mobile

Email rachel.lowe@networkrail.co.uk