A mock-up of a Class 777 – The new Merseyrail trains that will soon replace the Class 507/508 EMU’s
I’ve not actually snapped a new Class 777 live so the two shots in this posting are of the the mock-up which was on public view a while back at Liverpool Lime Street Station and Pacific Road in Birkenhead. However, there are videos appearing on You Tube now of the testing of the first batch of new units on the Merseyrail Network and here’s a link to one:-
This shows a Class 777 at Sandhills and at Bootle Oriel Road only yesterday evening.
A mock-up of a Class 777 Stadler EMU as displayed in Birkenhead a while back
We may still be in lockdown and being advised not to use public transport if at all possible but one day we’ll get past this health crisis and be able to ride trains and buses once more.
Being a railway enthusiast I try to keep an eye on what is happening across Merseyside and was interested to pick up on the latest developments for the Borderlands Line between Bidston and Wrexham which is now operated by Transport for Wales.
We knew that new Class 230 train units, with the ability to run on battery power, were being supplied for the route by Vivarail so news of the testing of these units seemingly being successful is obviously welcome. Here are a couple of links about the new units and their testing:-
Quote from Vivarail website article ‘the UK’s first battery hybrid being built for Transport for Wales to operate the Borderlands (Wrexham-Bidston) line. The train is powered by 2 batteries on each driving car with 4 gensets on the middle car to charge the batteries and as a secondary source of traction.’
In the medium to long term I still hold the view that this line should become a part of the Merseyrail network.
My thanks to Jonathan Cadwallader for the lead to this posting.
There’s an in depth travel survey on the Merseytravel website which you may like to participate in – see link below:-
A Merseytravel consultation event previously held in Maghull.
A Merseyrail electric unit at Bootle New Strand Station.
A Liverpool bound 507 EMU approaching the Crescent Road level crossing in Birkdale, Southport.
A snowy shot of Maghull Station with an Ormskirk bound train approaching from 2010 – not related to the video
Remember the snow of February 1994? Well you can relive it via this You Tube video of Merseyrail’s Northern Line to Southport during that bad weather – see link below:-
The video starts of at Chester but soon goes on to Southport after about 1m 30sec’s.
I blogged recently about the Moss Side Pond/Grotto which still exists on the presently being built Poppy Fields Estate or as some will know it the Ashworth South Site or Moss Side Hospital site. Here’s my original posting:-
The photo I used in that earlier posting was not the best as I could only take it through a building contractor’s fencing. However community activist and Maghull councillor Frank Sharp has provided me with 2 far better shots of the pond that he took in 2010 before the site was cleared for the new housing. The two photos are the ones in this posting above.
Frank also reminded me about the Harrison family connection with the site and you can read about them via the historic information display board on the platforms of the new(ish) Maghull North Station, which takes up a part of the former Moss Side Hospital site. I took the photo below of the display board a while back:-
Look out for it when you get a train from Maghull North to Ormskirk or Liverpool after our present lock-down is over…..
My thanks to Frank Sharp for his assistance with this posting.
Note – Please click on the photos to enlarge them
As our health crisis deepens here’s a snapshot of the consequences on our local railway networks as of today
End of the line from Wigan at Kirkby Station
Kirkby – Wigan: replacement bus (as it has been for last few days) every two hours
Ormskirk Station – The train in the foreground would have been Preston bound but it’s being replaced by a bus now.
Ormskirk – Preston: replacement bus every two hours and finishing early evening
This one is still running once an hour to Manchester – A Southport bound Class 156 DMU at Burscough Bridge Station on the Southport – Wigan – Manchester Line.
Southport – Manchester: hourly service to Victoria finishing early evening
As I penned this posting Merseyrail was running a half hourly service across its network
But of course no one wants anyone to use the remaining trains or replacement buses unless they are key workers or the travel is absolutely necessary.