05 December 2012

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STALYBRIDGE UPGRADE
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General shot of the west end of the station during £20m renewal work

 

Jo Kaye, Network Rail route managing director, explained:

 

“The old design dates back nearly 100 years and simply does not meet the needs of a modern railway.

 

“The extra platforms and new design will make it much easier to operate trains and improve reliability now,

“and prepares the route for electrification which is coming in 2016.

 

“As far as passengers are concerned, that means better train services now,

“and faster and more frequent services in the future.”

 

 

Rob Warnes, planning and performance director for Northern Rail comments:

 

“The modernisation of Stalybridge is the culmination of a lengthy planning process to deliver a faster, more functional and much improved railway. We understand our customers will be inconvenienced while the line is closed, and would like to apologise to those, who will experience disruption.

“We have worked closely with the local community, stakeholders, Passenger Transport Executives and our colleagues at Network Rail and First TransPennine Express to run the best possible replacement services during the upgrade.”

“Long term, we are confident the new look Stalybridge station will benefit all rail passengers and ensure the future of rail throughout the region.”

 

 

Chris Nutton, FTPE programme director said:

 

"The upcoming Network Rail work at Stalybridge will constitute a £20m investment in railway infrastructure that will pave the way for quicker and more reliable journeys. Two new platforms will be built and the number of trains running will be increased offering more seats for customers in the future.

"Unfortunately there is no way to achieve these substantial improvements other than closing the railway in and around Stalybridge for a short period of time, towards the end of October.

"FTPE and other operators will be providing detailed travel information and alternative modes of transport during this period, including operating trains to Manchester via an alternative route. There will be additional staff at stations to help and advise customers.

"I would like to apologise to customers for the upcoming disruption but assure them that we will do everything in our power to ensure they complete their journeys as smoothly as possible. I would also like to take this opportunity to advise customers to check the details of their journey before they travel.”

 

Looking towards Manchester, a First TransPennine Express train,

passes through the newly-extended Leeds-bound platform 4 at Stalybridge.

 

The new bay platform 5 is to the right.

Work detail:

A new bay platform adjacent to the existing platform 1

Widening of platform 2 and extending it alongside the existing bay platform

 

Demolition and rebuilding of the coffee shop on platform 2

 

New waiting shelters, CCTV and station announcements system, and passenger information screens.

 

The station will have five platforms in future, so the existing numbering will be changed.

 

Control of train movements in the area will transfer to

Manchester East signalling centre in Edgeley (Stockport)

and Stalybridge signal box will be demolished.

 

In 2013 work will start on an Access for All scheme

funded by the Department for Transport

to link all platforms.

 

New passenger operated lifts will be built taking passengers down

to the recently refurbished subway,

 

giving disabled passengers, people with buggies

and those with lots of luggage

step-free access to the entire station.

 

Above photos courtesy Network Rail

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STALYBRIDGE STATION

(post blockade)

Photos: Dr. D. Bunting & C. Carr

November 2012

The modern façade of Stalybridge Station

built about 4 years ago

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THE NEW LAYOUT

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

View of the station from the bridge at the top of Stamford Street,

close to the junction with Wakefield Road,

 

showing the new trackwork, not yet completed, and the large signal gantry.

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Looking towards the signal box at the divergence of the lines

to Ashton-under-Lyne & Manchester Victoria

and those to Guide Bridge & Manchester Piccadilly

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Class 150, 150137, arriving at platform 3, formerly platform 2.

 

Note the very long platforms to accommodate

the projected longer trains

and very much a feature of the upgraded station.

 

The platform levels correspond to those of the train floors

thus facilitating access for passengers

and, in particular, those with prams & chairs.

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On the left, the new shelter and refreshment bar, under the pale blue roof,

soon to be commissioned on platform 3.

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Plenty of illuminated information signs and clear platform signs are noted.

 

Platforms 2 and 5 are bays.

 

Bay platform 5 provides decanting and entraining facilities

for trains serving the Ashton-under- Lyne and Victoria Services,

enabling the Victoria trains to avoid crossing the lines serving Guide Bridge and Piccadilly

to reach the bay platform on the far side of the station, as pertained prior to the upgrade.

 

Clearly this move to platform 5 will be very popular,

being a much shorter and direct walk

than to the old docking bay now platform 2.

 

The final curve from Ashton into the station is now banked,

thus providing a more gentle approach to the station.

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Above and below:

On the platform, immediately adjacent to the front end of the

First TransPennine class 170, 170308

is the famous Stalybridge Station Buffet Bar.

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Above is the newly-created and long bay platform 5

for the designated Ashton-under-Lyne and Manchester Victoria Service.

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General view from the signal box end emphasising the very much-lengthened platforms 3 and 4.

 

The brick tower on the left is Stalybridge Fire Station.

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Similar view to the previous photo and an indication of the tidying up that remains to be done.

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Above & below:

Platform 2, upgraded and lengthened from the previous bay.

 

Beyond the blue fence is the newly-created platform 1,

not yet commissioned for use, noting the incomplete trackwork.

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Repeater signal at the Leeds end of Platform 4 for the down home signal (DH)

noted with an amber aspect, just 'peeping' over the wall.

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Full view of the signal gantry taken from the end of platform 3,

with the control boxes in the foreground,

and the approach to the tunnels in the background,

Micklehurst Tunnel having been closed since 1972

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Class 156, 156428, stands in platform 4, awaiting departure,

whilst on the opposite platform 3,

passengers await the next train for Manchester Piccadilly

in cold but bright sunshine.

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Infrastructure train, DR 98912, noted passing through Stalybridge,

travelling towards Mossley, emblazoned with the message

'Clearing Britain's Railways'

 

Its role was uncertain: was it part of the Stalybridge upgrade team, or just a passing train?

 

Below:

Close-up of the above train

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Part of the large work force, very conspicuous, as is appropriate, being kitted out in high-visibility vests,

that is evident around the station, nearby streets and premises,

whilst the upgrade work is in progress.

 

The man, with the blue satchel on his back, is the very important lookout / flagman for workers.

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Class 150, 150206, awaits departure from Platform 5

with the 14:40 service to Manchester Victoria

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Platform 4

looking towards Leeds

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A very detailed and interesting view of Platform 4

showing the entrance to the Station Buffet Bar, Station Clock, Cycle Rack,

as well as various wall plaques,

details of which all appear below

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The Aficionados will be very pleased to see that the

Stalybridge Station Buffet Bar, opened in 1885, has survived

 

and is still full of its old-fashioned character and bric-a-brac.

 

Hopefully its real ales will be tasted and supped for years to come.

 

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A replica of one of the original clocks at Stalybridge

See below for details

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Close-up of the gantry at the Leeds end of Platform 4

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The large signal gantry controlling both the entrance & exit to the station,

as viewed from the street outside.

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RVR's Guest Contributor, Dr. Bunting,

makes the following observations:

 

It is good to note such huge project being undertaken so efficiently.

There was no way that the closure of the station for nine days

could have been avoided with so much re-organising taking place.

 

The re-positioning of the service to Manchester Victoria Station

to the newly-created bay platform 5,

is an excellent idea for local travellers.

 

Disabled travellers, those in wheel-chairs, and with prams etc.

will appreciate, with gratitude,

the level access from platform to train.

 

It is also worth noting that the arrival platform at Victoria Station

also affords level access to the Metro Station, only 100 metres or so away,

without the need for escalators or lifts.

 

Use of the very frequent Metro trams into central Manchester

is also included in the cost of the rail ticket.

 

For the return journey from Manchester Victoria to Stalybridge,

a lift is available to gain access to the over-bridge to Platform 4.

 

Much appreciated is an hourly departure from Platform 1

that is only a very short level distance from the Metro Station.

 

However, those arriving at Manchester Piccadilly Station,

and, who wish to gain access to the Metro Station or taxi ranks,

do need to use two flights of an escalator, but lifts are available, if required.

Derek Bunting

November 2012

 

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To view:

Live Departures from Stalybridgexxxxxxxxxxxclick here

Timetables (current & new) for Stalybridge xclick here xxxxxTable 39 National Rail

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxclick here xxxxxTables 15 & 25 Northern Rail

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Historical

Old Bradshaw Timetables for Stalybridge

Historical Rail Map

 

'Delph Donkey' Article Stalybridge/Oldham - Greenfield - Delph Line

which includes original Track Diagrams for Greenfield, Moorgate Jct. and Delph

plus a specially drawn Road/Rail Map of Saddleworth

 

 

Grateful thanks are extended to Keith Lumley (Network Rail), Derek Bunting and Colin Carr for their help in producing this gallery.

NK

 

 

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