Next stage of Great North Rail Project to take place in West Yorkshire.(Network Rail)

Next stage of Great North Rail Project to take place in West Yorkshire

York Rail Operating Centre.(Network Rail Image)

Passengers are advised to check before they travel as the next stage of improvement work to the signalling system takes place in West Yorkshire as part of the Great North Rail Project.

The project will see the old signalling technology ‘recontrolled’ from local lineside signal boxes to the state-of-the-art Rail Operating Centre in York, resulting in a more reliable, modern and cost-effective railway with the benefits felt right across the rail network in the north.

The project will take place in three stages; the first took place in August and the second stage will take place between Saturday, 28 October and Sunday, 29 October. During this weekend, both Huddersfield and Dewsbury stations will be closed, with no train services travelling through them.

During this time, TransPennine Express (TPE) and Northern will operate up to 25 buses per hour to keep passengers moving between Leeds, Manchester, Manchester Airport, Halifax, Wakefield, Huddersfield, Dewsbury, Stalybridge and Bradford. The work will also mean changes to TPE services from various stations across the north.

Rob McIntosh, route managing director for Network Rail, said:

“We appreciate that there is never a good time to disrupt passengers and we are advising anyone wishing travel to plan their journeys ahead of time to avoid disappointment.

“The signalling system in this part of West Yorkshire is approaching the end of its operational life and this investment will increase reliability, thereby reducing delays, while cutting the cost of running the railway for the taxpayer. I thank passengers for their patience and assure them that the result of the disruption will be a more reliable, efficient, modern network fit to meet the needs of the economies and communities our railway serves.”

Kathryn O’Brien, Customer Experience Director for TransPennine Express said:

“Due to this important work, we will be unable to operate any trains between Manchester and Leeds between 28 and 29 October. Customers travelling between the two cities should use Northern services on the Manchester Victoria to Leeds route. Replacement buses will also be running.

“There will also be changes to our services from Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Scarborough, Hull, Manchester, Sheffield, Doncaster and Cleethorpes.

“No trains will be operating to or from Huddersfield or Dewsbury railway stations but the local team will still be on hand to provide help and assistance to customers.

“Customers are urged to allow extra time and check before they travel at: tpexpress.co.uk/changesor at nationalrail.co.uk.”

Paul Barnfield, regional director at Northern, said:

“This vital work is the latest part of the Great North Rail Project which is transforming the rail infrastructure across the north of England.

“We continue to work closely with colleagues in the industry to deal with any disruption to our customers’ journeys and have plans in place to help keep people on the move at the end of October.”

The third and final stage of the project which affects Huddersfield and Dewsbury will take place between Saturday, 20 January and Sunday, 21 January. Further work will take place on the Calder Valley line in 2018, with more details to follow.