Network Rail is investing £45m, as part of The Great North Rail Project, to improve railway signalling on the West Coast mainline at a key section in the North West.
56 Signals between Prestbury, Macclesfield and Congleton will be upgraded to the latest technology and will be controlled from Network Rail’s state of the art control centre based in Manchester.
Work is set to commence in July and is expected to take 17 months to complete.
The investment will bring the key section of the West Coast main line up to date and improve journeys for the travelling public and freight on one of the busiest mixed-use rail routes in Europe.
Most of the work has been organised to cause as little disruption to passengers as possible but the upgrade will mean changes to some weekend services during 2022.
Details of the impact on services will be released nearer the time by both Network Rail and train operators.
Alongside the signalling upgrade, power sources, electrical cabling and two structures carrying 25,000 volt overhead lines will be upgraded/replaced to provide better visibility for drivers of the new signals.
Network Rail is offering local people a chance to find out more at a virtual information event on Tuesday 6 July.
To register in advance please email [email protected]
Ian Robinson, project manager for Network Rail, said: “This once in a generation overhaul of Macclesfield’s signalling system will bring this key section of the West Coast main line up to the most modern standards. The £45m Great North Rail Project investment will future proof journeys and create a more reliable railway for passengers and freight services.
“Before our work in Macclesfield begins, we’ve invited local people to speak with us – I’d like to thank our neighbours and passengers in advance for their patience.”
Gus Dunster, executive director of operations and safety at Avanti West Coast, said: “We’re excited that Network Rail is upgrading the signalling system on a key section of our Manchester route as part of their Great North Rail Project. Once complete, the works will help to make journeys on the West Coast mainline more reliable for many years to come.”
John Robson, CrossCountry regional director West Midlands and North West, said: “This investment in better technology is vital in keeping passengers and trains moving for years to come. Having more reliable services means a better customer experience and more consistency when travelling through the area.”
David Rutley, MP for Macclesfield, said: “It’s good to see this major investment being made to upgrade signalling equipment on this important railway line which will make services more reliable for passengers.
“I would encourage local people to find out more about the project and keep up to date with developments in the coming months.”
For more information on Network Rail signalling upgrades visit: https://www.networkrail.co.uk/running-the-railway/looking-after-the-railway/signalling/
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