An Intercity HST from BR days (around 1990) just coming off Brunel’s famous Royal Albert Bridge Bridge over the Tamar. Click on the shot to enlarge it.
Back to Railtrack! Oh no, we have been shunted into that siding before. Network Rail clearly has its faults and its problems and its failures but what it needs is good management not another trip down a rundown branch line in a Pacer. Government needs to find the best way to run our railways not simply rerun the old tired argument of public V private ownership.
The photo is also on my Flickr page at:-
5th October 1991 at Liverpool Lime Street
I picked up on this old story via Facebook but none the less it is an important if historical pointer to the failings of the Class 142 Pacer trains that organisations and people such as OPSTA (Ormskirk, Preston & Southport Travellers Assn), John Pugh MP (the MP for Southport) and many others have been fighting to have taken out of service.
It seems the battle to have them consigned to history is all but won but they will be around for a while yet until their replacements come along.
Tier One priority lines for electrification – The top five in the north of England
1 Calder Valley
2 Liverpool to Manchester via Warrington Central
3 Southport/Kirkby to Salford Crescent
4 Chester to Stockport
5 Northallerton to Middlesbrough
Southport Station – Unpopular ‘Pacer’ trains heading for Wigan & Manchester could well be replaced by more environmentally friendly electric units if these proposals are accepted.
There may well be a long way to go yet but all the campaigning of organisations such as OPSTA, Southport Business Improvement District, John Pugh the MP for Southport and the Lib Dem Sefton Council Group seems to have hit home with the powers that be in the rail industry.
The extension of the electrification which presently stops at Kirkby (out of Liverpool) is also an obvious and welcome move forward and one on which this web site has commented previously.
Let’s hope these projects move forward without delay.
The BBC has the story – see link above
This really is very good news indeed. So to all those campaigners across England including John Pugh (the MP for Southport) and OPSTA (Ormskirk, Preston & Southport Travellers Association) who have fought high profile campaigns to rid our railways of what are little more than buses on rails I say a big thank you to you all.
Works are continuing to electrify the lines in the Liverpool and Manchester area. I went along to Prescot Station the other day to have a look at how the project is progressing there.
Here are few shots I took:-
Cantenary on the way up
Looking north from Prescot Station
Another view northwards along the line
A Class 150 DMU on a Liverpool bound service with a 142 DMU in front of it.
Whilst the electrification will be completed in the not too distant future many of the trains will still be diesel hauled because Northern Rail does not have enough electric multiple units (EMU’s) to run on the lines that are being electrified in the north of England. As ever Northern Rail’s rolling stock issues are the biggest concern here as they are across the whole of their franchise.
The photos above are amongst my Flickr shots at:-