Altrincham Interchange Update – July 2013 ….

Posted on July 26th, 2013, by The Chairman

Andrew Macfarlane reports ….

“I went to a meeting of the Friends of Altrincham Interchange last night (8 July), at which various representatives from TfGM gave an update on the Altrincham Interchange scheme. Prior to the meeting I noticed that the two redundant electrification gantries on platform 1/2 (one 1931, one 1971) had been removed as had the 1931 electrification gantry across the platform 3/4 lines at the south end of those platforms apart from about 10 feet of the support on platform 4 which still stands.

“Altrincham bus station is to close after the last buses have departed on the evening of Saturday 13 July, i.e. it will not be open on Sunday 14 July and the new bus station will not open until late 2014. It is hoped that it will be open in time for the pre-Christmas period next year. The Travelshop will close with the bus station. Temporary arrangements are being made to sell System One bus tickets from the railway booking office on platform 4 for the “2 or 3 weeks” until the new booking office on platform 1 is open. All of the facilities which are currently available from the Travelshop will be available from the new booking office apart from you will no longer be able to book National Express coach tickets (these are available from Altrincham library) or book National Holidays (coach holidays). The new booking office will be entirely behind glass (shame) but there will be leaflet racks in the booking hall. The new booking office will be staffed entirely by Northern Rail.

“We were told that one more new electrification gantry is to be installed on platform 1/2. The wires are currently attached to the existing footbridge and this new gantry will take on that function. They only have 5 or 6 27-hour possessions in which to do such work because of the Mid Cheshire line being used for diversions due to the Chat Moss electrification. The new footbridge will be lifted into place in October (but it will not be brought into use until next year). The footpath down from Moss Lane will be reopened in time for 14 July so the two entrances to platfrom 1 from that date will be from that footpath via the side gate and at the north end of platform 1 at the north end of the bus station. Buses will depart from temporary stands on nearby roads during the closure period. There will be CCTV at stops and staffing (the bus station staff are moving to a shop near the Victoria pub).

“Asbestos will be removed from the bus station after 14 July before demolition work can begin. Part of the platform canopy (10-15 metres) at the north end of platform 1 is to be removed on Sunday 21 July because it is in the way of construction work. The width of Stamford New Road will be reduced. A temporary taxi rank will be provided on Stamford Street during the highway works. Staff will be on hand (until midnight for the first week, until 23.00 thereafter) to guide bus passengers to the temporary stops. The lifts from the new footbridge will begin operation around spring 2014 (depending on possession dates). The existing platform 1 steps would be closing in August 2014 so rail passengers would have to walk around the platform 1/2 buffer stops to gain access from platform 1 to platforms 3 and 4 after that date until the new steps are in operation. There had been no interest from the heritage movement in the existing footbridge but Trafford Council would be taking on the columns (both the footbridge support columns and the redundant columns from the part of the platform 1 canopy being removed) for possible use in the Altrincham Market Quarter.

“I raised the need for signage (both temporary and permanent) indicating where trains to Stockport departed from and the need for a sign by the Metrolink ticket machines clearly indicating that the machines sold tickets for Metrolink (it is not uncommon for passengers to buy a ticket from one of these machines and then board a train). I also suggested a sign indicating that passengers could also buy Metrolink tickets from the booking office (some passengers of course struggle with the machines). The MCCRP noticeboard is safeguarded (it is visible in a site compound at the south end of the bus station).”

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Thanks to Andrew for this update. Sorry it has taken me a little bit of time getting round to posting it.

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Below are pictures taken by Mike Battman on Sunday 28 July.

Outside the buses stop here no more for the some time ….

130728 Alty Interchange (8)

…. An identity crisis? ….

130728 Alty Interchange (11)

…. That would be a long walk!

Passengers wait for the 1204 Northern 2-hourly service to Manchester ….

130728 Alty Interchange (3)

…. whilst Metrolink was terminating at Cornbrook due to the continuing engineering work ….

130728 Alty Interchange (16)

The beginning of the end for part of the 100+ year old canopy ….

130728 Alty Interchange (17)

Many thanks to Mike for these.

Please leave a comment

  1. The Chairman Says:

    Many thanks to Mike Battman who’s sent us some pictures taken yesterday of the works at Altrincham Interchange.

    I’ve inserted them at the bottom of the post above.

    p.s. How long does it take to walk from Altrincham to Rochdale Station when leaving in a southerly direction?!!

  2. Mike Battman Says:

    I assume that the fencing (including signage)has come from the Laing O’Rourke Metrolink works in Rochdale town centre.

  3. Mike Battman Says:

    The new ticket office on Platform 1 is now open and looks very smart and spacious (no pictures as yet, but I will take some)
    Consequently, the temporary office on Platform 4 is now closed

  4. Mike Battman Says:

    It looks like the beginning of the end is near for the footbridge. There is a notice up which states that the section between platforms 1 and 2 will be closed from Sunday 13th October.
    Access to the mid Cheshire lines is via the terminus ends of Platforms 1/2 – it’s a fair hike, so leave extra time!

    Because of its skew the new bridge can now be built without hindrance.

  5. Mike Battman Says:

    The canopy on Platform 1 was being dismantled and removed today in readiness for the new footbridge. No trains or trams running.

  6. Mike Battman Says:

    I meant to ask, when did the “Bike & Go” facility on Platform 4 arrive?

  7. Jen Says:

    On the 27th September I noticed workmen installing what seemed to be an extra bike rack and on the 5th October I noticed it was part of a ‘Bike n Go’ facility. Altrincham is one if 13 North West stations currently being set up with the facility – Knutsford and Wilmslow are the other Cheshire stations getting it.

  8. Mike Battman Says:

    #Jen
    They seem a good idea, I hope they are a success and run out at more station, Delamere would be a good start!
    I do worry about the lack of publicity though, I only know about them because I saw them whilst taking pictures of the alterations.

    btw I’ve sent our Chairman some photos of them to post on here

  9. Jen Says:

    Mike: I think the problem with Delamere is under the scheme you can only collect a bike when the ticket office is open, so in the case of Delamere there is no ticket office. (Apparently there are/will be boxes allowing keys to be returned during unstaffed hours.)

    I mentioned in a comment under another post that the downside of the scheme at Altrincham and Knutsford will be you can’t rent a bicycle on Sunday mornings, which is the time when the roads are quietest and it is more difficult to get a connecting bus service from the station.

    Hopefully Northern publicise the facilities in the December 13 timetables. The facilities are shown on http://www.nationalrail.co.uk with an unspecified start date.

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