Report for GMPTE on Tram-Train to Greenbank – 2007 ….

Posted on August 6th, 2012, by The Chairman

Following on from the proposal for tram-train in Mid Cheshire, we’ve been contacted to let us know that GMPTE commissioned a report in 2007 on the potential for Tram-Train to Greenbank (it seems there’s also a separate report on Tram-Train to Marple).

This report has been released in a redacted form under The Freedom of Information Act. It’s 1.24MB and can be downloaded by clicking on Altrincham-Greenbank Report (REDACTED).

TfGM told the recipient “Under the Freedom of Information Act 2000, GMPTE has a duty to supply any information on request, unless there is an exemption. It is TfGM’s policy only to apply the exemptions where there is a genuine risk of harm or prejudice. In such cases, we will still provide information if it is in the public interest to do so. TfGM have redacted the financial information contained in the Altrincham – Greenbank Report as this information is exempt by virtue of S43 of the Act. We cannot disclose the information because we believe it would prejudice TfGM’s ability to get good value for money when dealing with commercial companies. In this instance, we believe that it is not in the public interest to disclose the information to you.” (Seems fair enough – Chairman).

The current position in terms of support is covered in a report submitted to the Greater Manchester Combined Authority on 29 June 2012.

Of particular note is the following relevant text on pages 13 and 14 of the report:

“Rapid transit developments – as agreed in LTP3, a range of corridors will be reviewed by TfGM and Districts for their medium to long-term potential for further Metrolink development, tram-train conversion or other rapid transit development, which would continue to enhance the extent of commuter connectivity in Greater Manchester and offer significant economic/productivity returns. Tram-train is attracting increasing support from DfT, particularly through the committed pilot in South Yorkshire, and would complement the Metrolink programme and the Northern Hub rail expansion proposals, as well as offering scope to better balance the demands of a future devolved railway. Potential investment corridors could include:
• Manchester – Marple via Bredbury (including Rose Hill and Marple options)
• Manchester – Glossop
• Manchester – Atherton – Wigan
• Sale – Altrincham – Hale/Knutsford/Northwich
• Didsbury – Hazel Grove
• Altrincham – Stockport – Manchester

In addition, as part of a wider rapid transit strategy, consideration will be given to any potential enhancements to Metrolink lines or additional extensions to the Metrolink network, alongside any bus rapid transit options which can demonstrate strong business cases that deliver economic growth. This work will also help to ensure that future initiatives offering real potential, such as the onward construction of Metrolink to Port Salford, are safeguarded in wider planning and development programmes, as well as seeking to complement and maximise any opportunities that may be offered in the future”.


Please leave a comment

  1. Jen Says:

    I’ve noticed one comment is that a new station is proposed for Mobberley. I haven’t heard that one before, is it part of the proposed plan for a Manchester Airport to Mobberley line?

    If the station was relocated to near where Broadoak Lane crosses the the train line then it would actually be closer to Knutsford Business Park than Knutsford station. However, it would need lighting, footpath and pedestrian crossing improvements to make it a safe option to walk between the two at the start and the end of the working day in winter.

  2. Jen Says:

    Should have read on before posting. Aren’t there a couple of errors in the document?

    One bit talks about very expensive work to increase the line speed over Leftwich viaduct. I thought it would actually be relatively cheap for the line speed to be raised for non-Pacer units.

    Another talks about the daily train which terminates at Greenbank having to go up a mile beyond Greenbank to turn around. When ever I used that service (the former St Annes to Greenbank service) after terminating the driver changed end and went back to Northwich empty, switching tracks by the signal box.

  3. The Chairman Says:

    Hi, Jen!

    MCRUA has pushed for some years to have the linespeed raised over Leftwich Viaduct.

    We understand this is now agreed and is in the plan for 2013/2014 to be done in conjuction with the scheduled relaying of the points at the Greenbank end of the viaduct (209 and 210). This will allow higher line speeds; the signalling will also be amended to allow terminating trains to run into the Manchester-bound platform at Greenbank such that trains towards Manchester can restart from there, which they can’t from the Chester-bound side as it is only signalled with a ground signal. The linespeed over the viaduct would then be 50/20, i.e. freights still restricted to 20mph. It is reckoned this will save 2 minutes on the service train and 2½-3 minutes for diverted passenger trains using the line, thereby adding capacity.

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