Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Woodhead rail tunnels to be sealed

Two Victorian rail tunnels in the Pennines are to be sealed, dashing hopes the historic Manchester to Sheffield route could be reopened.

Transport Minister Stephen Hammond made the decision not to buy the Woodhead tunnels, between South Yorkshire and Derbyshire, from owners National Grid.

A new tunnel replaced the Victorian route in 1953. The line closed in 1981.

Campaigners hoped power cables could be moved into the older tunnels and trains returned to the newer tunnel. Read more: BBC News

This is not good news. The chronic traffic problems on the A628 could have been considerably eased if this rail route were to reopen. HGV's could then be banned from the A628 but given the option of  using trains using the roll on roll off method as used on the Channel Tunnel for their journey between the M60 and M1 otherwise they could use the longer and slower route via the M62. 

Only in short sighted Britain would a modern fully electrified main line be neglected and then closed. The history of the Woodhead line is fascinating and Ashton under Lyne features large in its history. Click here for more info and here to watch a sad video of the last day of the line before closure. Tameside Citizen


Keep on trucking said...

Economic fantasy land. Driving a wagon 30 miles to a train goods yard, unloading the goods onto a train, transporting the goods 60 miles on a train, unloading them at the other end onto a lorry to transport them fifty miles.
This is a small country and rail freight could only ever cope with a miniscule amount of the monumental amount of goods sent by road haulage with its innate flexibility and practicality.

Off peak emptiness said...

What's that echoing sound in Droylsden? It's another empty Ghost tram spookily whisking through the ghost town of Doylsden.

Beyer Peacock said...

Until relatively recently nearly all freight travelled by train. After the Beeching cuts the thousands of small of goods yards used for local distribution were closed and sold off and then the lorry took over. How ever much the rail haters may not like hearing this the railway is far from finished. Any motorist will tell you the roads are running at full capacity and a solution must be found and that is more road building with all the associated problems that brings or invest in rail and let the train take some of the strain. However you look at it doing nothing is no longer an option.

Anonymous said...

Some big Transport Organisations have appealed for this tunnel to be opened over the past 18 years.
Tameside MBC always objected as did the ByPass
I believe also the National Peak Park administrators at Bakewell suggested the re-opening
of the tunnel.
Secret objectives which are hidden are prompting this closure.

The Coudenhove-Kalergi plan said...

On November 16th 2012, the President of the European Council, Herman Van Rompuy

Anonymous said...

The railway isn't finished but a massive investment in rail would only cause miniscule reduction in both freught and passenger travel due to the roads doing such a vastly greater proportion of the overall work. Expansion and upgrading of existing roads would have enormously greater beneficial effects economically and in terms of reducing congestion, than half baked, unnecessary and irrational schemes to reintroduce a tiny bit more rail use in a small country.