News Archive for 2010
press strike news 27 December: the 10:08 train from Davenport to
Manchester did run as per the
contigency timetable, so presumably the contingency timetable applies
on 27 / 28 December and there will be trains at (only) 13:08 and 15:08
to Manchester with returns from Manchester Piccadilly at 10:52 (11:09
Davenport - Buxton not calling at Middlewood or Dove Holes) 13:52
(terminating at Hazel Grove) and 15:52 (16:09 from Davenport all
stations to Buxton). Check the Live
Departures and click 'details' before travelling if you can to see
if 'Act' appears by the times from the starting station. Unfortunately the normal service of trains
has not been fully removed from the database, and trains are most
misleadingly shown as 'expected on time' but will not show with
Northern Rail have put up posters at the station about the 27-28
December conductor's strikes (see below)
it would appear that no trains will run on the Buxton line
on those days.
However, on their website there is a contingency timetable
suggesting that on each day three trains each will serve Davenport in
each direction. Which is correct? Who knows?
Note that this is a Northern Rail dispute: other train companies are
running to their advertised Chrsitmas period timetables on 27 & 28
Further information: The
buses that were planned to operate between Sheffield and Chinley
calling at local stations (except Edale), due to engineering work will
between Sheffield and Stockport, running non-stop between Chinley and
For customers travelling between Altrincham and Manchester, rail
tickets valid for travel between Altrincham and Manchester Piccadilly
will be accepted for travel on Metrolink tram services between
Altrincham and Manchester Central Zone on 27 and 28 December.
Happy Christmas to all our readers
As usual there will be no trains running on our line, nor on most
others, on 25 and 26 December, and on Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve
services will stop running earlier than usual. As far as we can tell,
the last trains from Davenport on 24 December will be the 21:08 to
Manchester and the 20:09 to Buxton (19:52 from Manchester) but do check for yourself before
travelling. Metrolink trams will also be finishing early on 24
December, with the last trams from the City Centre leaving about 20:45.
Stageoach buses will be running their 'holiday service' and will also
be going to bed early on Christmas Eve - see
website for details. No buses on Christmas Day and not many
the next day, although the 192 bus along the A6 to Manchester will run on Boxing
December, every 10 minutes from about 08:30 until 18:00.
Metrolink trams will also be running on 26 December, until about 19:00.
See item below about 27 and 28 December.
21 December 2010
A failure to agree the appropriate pay rates for 'replacement holidays'
has led to a planned strike by Northern Rail Conductors on Monday 27
and Tuesday 28 December. There will be no
replacement buses provided.
The following letter to staff from the Northern Managing Director comes
courtesy of Wonkyleaks -
We have had the ballot result through from the RMT and although only a
minority of conductors voted for strike action ... we have seen
an RMT media statement that says a strike will go ahead and it will
take place on Monday 27 and Tuesday 28 December. The full result of the
ballot was that of the 976 conductors who are members of the RMT, 361
voted for strike action, 240 voted against strike action and 375
I am very disappointed that the union has said strike action will go
ahead even though only about one-third of balloted employees voted for
it. The RMT balloted for strike action over Bank Holiday terms and
conditions, even though the union agreed to those terms and conditions
several years ago.
We have said all along that we will honour the existing agreements that
we have with our trade union partners, and we are always willing to
hold further talks.
Our priority now must be to ensure that our passengers have all the
information they need to make an informed decision about their travel
plans on 27 and 28 December. We have a detailed contingency plan to
operate as many services as possible and to provide good customer
service for those passengers who can travel.
Kind regards, Ian Bevan, Managing Director.
21 December 2010
Buxton line trains are running well on 18 December, but delays are
occurring on Preston - Hazel Grove services. Check the Live
Departures for up-to-date info. Note - if you select 'details' for
tour train you can check the 'actual' (shown as act) departure times as
recorded at Buxton, Furness Vale and Hazel Grove and Manchester, as
opposed to the expected (exp) ones.
A new timetable comes into force nationally from 12 December 2010.
There appear to be few changes to Davenport times except that
departures towards Manchester revert to their slightly later
non-leaf-fall times, but do check your planned journeys.
It appears that the Class 180 'bullet' trains are remaining with
Northern Rail for the time being, as nothing has been scrounged from
other companies to replace them.
In the Snow
Thanks are due to all the local rail staff for keeping our service
running so well over the recent snowy weather: most trains, especially
those from Buxton where train staff must have had great trouble getting
to work, have run as planned, with delays largely confined to the
trains coming from Preston to Hazel Grove through the congested
junctions north of Manchester.
3 December 2010
The Advent season sees a musical event at St George's Church on the
corner of Bramhall Lane and Buxton Road. 11 December at 8pm there is
'Carols by Candlelight' featuring the Maia Singers, tickets
at the door including a glass of wine and a mince pie.
If you have never been inside St
George's Church, this is a good chance to visit: its 1890s Gothic
architecture is as spectacular as any in the country.
GM Local Transport Plan
Residents are invited to comment by 24 December on Greater Manchester's
'Local Transport Plan' - see the GMITA website
for full details (not that there is much actual detail in the railway
23 November 2010
Closure of Mosley Street Metrolink station
The Greater Manchester Integrated Transport Authority proposes to
close and remove the Metrolink stop at Mosley Street from the end of
February 2010. We have obtained a copy of the consultants' report on
this proposal, and you can download
here. Although perhaps not very relevant to Davenport
passengers, we feel the document needs wider distribution.
Representations about the proposal should be sent to the Department for
Transport, RLMP division, Great Minster House, 76 Marsham Street,
London SW1P 4DR no later than 9 February 2011. There seems to be a
policy to keep this plan and the consultation process away from the
Internet, perhaps to discourage vexatious objections; it appears that
there is no actual need for GMITA to obtain permission as they would
for a 'heavy rail' station.
The main purpose of the station is to provide a point in the Piccadily
area for Altrincham-bound passengers to catch the more frequent tram
service (every 6 minutes in theory) from that point, and as such it is
Disaster on Stockport Viaduct, 1948
As far as we know, no passenger has ever been killed in a train
accident on the Stockport - Buxton line itself, but four people
travelling to our line were killed in the tragic accident which
occurred on Stockport Viaduct on the fog-bound evening of 30 November
1948 when the coaches 5.17 pm Manchester - Hazel Grove train, which had
been coupled on the rear of a Crewe-bound service, were run into from
behind by a train destined for Buxton. Prolific local historian Kevin Dranfield tells the full
dramatic story, aided by the memories of a survivor of the accident, in
a new illustrated book Stockport
Train Crash: Viaduct Disaster of 1948, copies of which are now
available in Waterstones Stockport, and no doubt other local outlets,
The tragic story will bring back memories for older readers of the
impenetrable fogs of those days, the antiquated comparment coaches and
their steam locos, and the way the railway staff bravely tried to keep
trains running to get commuters home on a night which even with today's
modern equipment would probably see all trains cancelled. It seems
unimaginable that when stopped at one of the old oil-lit semaphore
signals in a fog, the fireman of the locomotive would be expected to
climb the ladder of the signal to check whether it was clear to
Those of us living in what might perhaps be called 'original' Davenport
(between the old Stockport border at Kennerley Road and the 1901 border
at the Midland Railway line) are served by the shops opposite the
station and the pair (built ca. 1910) next to the Jolly Sailor pub.
Since the fall of the Thresher empire these latter two have
rival 'convenience' shops selling more or less the same items and
increasingly festooned with competing placards (picture above). How
long this situation can last is hard to imagine. Meanwhile, opposite
the station we now have, in addition to the 'St George's Convenience
Store' (who remembers good old Deane's Newsagent?), a small Pound Shop
things) and, coming soon, a 'Soul Temple.' All the premises in this row
were originally houses with front gardens: in the 1911 census for
example, no.134, currently the Persis
shop, and remembered as 'Baccasweet' by long-standing
residents, was the family home of Dudley Alfred Elwes, the Assistant
District Manager (Goods Dept.) of the London and North Western Railway.
The area now occupied by the garages (a.k.a. Industrial Estate) was his
garden and those of the
adjacent homes. No. 124 on the Garners Lane corner, which no longer
exists, was also home to a railway manager.
Disruption, 30 - 31 October
"A landslip is causing disruption in the Dove Holes area.
Because of this, buses are replacing trains between Buxton and New
Mills Newtown with journey times extended by up to 30 minutes. This
will continue until start of service on Monday 1 November." Trains are
serving Davenport at the normal times; the journey time to Buxton
including the bus is advertised as 1 hour 13 minutes; we would guess
that intermediate stations between New Mills and Buxton will be served
by stops on the main road nearest to the stations (which in the case of
Chapel-en-le-Frith is quite a long way!)
Considerable irritation was caused on the evening of 30
October when the 17:21 Manchester - Buxton was cancelled altogether
because of the above, and local management (such as it is) failed to
arrange for extra stops at Davenport and Woodsmoor for the 17:10
(Saturdays Only) Manchester - Hazel Grove which normally omits these
Steam at Buxton
A steam excursion from Birmingham (Tyseley), 'The High Peak' is
visiting Buxton on Saturday 23 October: unfortunately for local
train-watchers it is not passing through Davenport but is running in
both directions via the Hope Valley line, the East Curve at Chinley,
and Peak Forest, reversing in the sidings at Buxton to access the
station. Tickets are sold out.
Local timings are:
Edale pass 11:56, Great Rocks Junction 12:14, Buxton arrive (after
reversal in the sidings) 13:05. Buxton dep 17:53 (hauled back to
sidings by diesel loco for reversal) Great Rocks Junction 18:00, Edale
It appears that the loco will set the train back into the sidings after
arrival in Buxton, and then run light-engine to Chinley junction
triangle to turn while the diesel shunts the coaches back to the
22 October 2010
One of many attempts to get the departure screens working again ...
note the new CCTV cameras.
Ghost train to Chester
The latest adventure thought up by the Mid-Cheshire
Partnership is a 'real ghost train' - which will the 17:58
Stockport - Chester on Wednesday 27 October, and the 21:03 return from
Chester, which trains that day will feature 'scary ghost stories, face
painting and spooky goody bags' for children. Both trains are normal
services with the usual fare - be warned!
Local travel plan seminar
I attended the recent Seminar organised by the Greater Manchester
Integrated Transport Authority to introduce their consultation on the
5-year Local Transport Plan which they are preparing. I was lucky
enough to get a seat in the discussion next to Mark Barker, Northern
Rail's Client & Stakeholder Manager for our area, and was able to
raise with him the matter of overcrowding of trains at Davenport which
is at busy times away from the traditional 'peaks' - even on Sundays.
Last year there were severe problems in the weeks before Christmas in
particular; I suggested that perhaps the 5-car Class 180 trains which
stand idle at weekends could be brought into use. He said this might
cost too much, but Northern are aware of the problem and hope to do
something to help this year.
As for the Plan itself, if you want to read and comment on it, go to www.gmpte.com/LPT3.
Unfortunately the documents available seem to be sadly lacking in any
detail about how train services are to be improved, beyond stating the
obvious problem that Northern Rail does not have enough carriages, and
it's hard to run more trains because of congestion at the various
junctions around Manchester. Supposedly we may be getting a few
second-hand trains to add to the fleet, butsome of that improvement
will be cancelled out because the Department for Transport had ordered
that four of the best trains used on the Buxton Line, the Class 156
units with their wide seats and tables, are to be given to East
The plan by the old Government to order new trains for Northern Rail
came to nothing after much money was spent on preparing tender
documents etc., etc. In case that matter crops up in any political
documents, it should be noted that the cancellation took place just before the recent election. Lord
Adonis introduced a plan to electrify several lines in the North West,
to be operated by second-hand trains from the Thameslink line in London
which is supposed to be getting all new stock. Whether any of this will
go ahead remains to be seen - all we hear about recently is the
multi-billion High Speed Line.
18 October 2010
The refurbished footbridge was finally brought into use on Friday 10
September, after some titivating of the tarmac and provision of tactile
surfaces at the Bramhall Lane gateway.
The work done on the station has also included the installation of CCTV
cameras and, very welcome to many older users, proper handrails on both
sides of the steps down to the Manchester platform.
Don't miss your train
The 'leaf-fall' timetable began on 4 September: most trains towards
Manchester are now scheduled to leave Davenport a couple of minutes earlier than before. Check the
times before travelling.
5 September 2010
More about the footbridge
The rebuilt station footbridge was, we were told, to have been brought
use on Bank Holiday Monday 30 August, but this did not happen.
Meanwhile, by courtesy of Chris Houlton of
the NR Williams Group
we can bring you the story of where it went and what happened to it.
The structural refurbishment was carried out by TI Engineering Services
at the NL Williams facility in St. Helens. After
an initial blast clean by NLW to remove years of existing coatings,
enabling an assessment of the extent of repairs required, TI
Engineering Services undertook repair works to bring the footbridge up
to engineering specifications. After completing the necessary repair
and fabrication works, the footbridge was handed over to NLW Group's
Product Finishing Unit for the application of the protective coating
After re-blasting the newly repaired
footbridge, NLW operatives expertly applied a thermally sprayed and
sealed aluminium coating, followed by
a high solids epoxy primer, finished with a gloss acrylic urethane - a
system deigned to give life to first major maintenance of up to 25
operatives then masked-off areas of the bridge after the
initial coating application, to achieve the two-colour paintwork
requested by the end-client to match the original appearance of the
footbridge. Once the painting work had been completed, Permadeck
took control of the footbridge to apply Permagrip slip-resistant
surfacing to the newly fabricated and replaced main span panels.
Pub commemorates railwayman
The new pub just opened in Hazel Grove by the JD
Wetherspoon chain, at 204 London Road (go down Hatherlow Lane from
the station and turn left along the A6) has been named 'The Wilfred
after local hero Wilfred Wood VC, born in Hazel Grove in 1897, son of
Henry Wood, a felt hat blocker also born in Hazel Grove. Wilfred won
the Victoria Cross for his actions in World War I. According to Wikipedia:
He was 21 years old, and a private
in the 10th Battalion, The Northumberland
Fusiliers, British Army during the First
War when the following deed took place at the battle of
Vittorio Veneto for which he was awarded the VC. On 28 October 1918
near Casa Vana, Italy,
when the advance was being held up by hostile machine-guns and snipers,
Private Wood on his own initiative worked forward with his Lewis gun,
enfiladed the enemy machine-gun nest and caused 140 men to surrender.
Later, when a hidden machine-gun opened fire at point-blank range,
Private Wood charged the gun, firing his Lewis gun from the hip at the
same time. He killed the machine-gun crew and, without further orders,
pushed on and enfiladed [fired his gun along] a ditch from which three
officers and 160 men
Wilfred's medal record card (from
The naming of a pub after him is quite appropriate, as his
grandfather, James Wood (son of Thomas Wood who was blacksmith at
a Poynton Colliery), was in 1891 the licensee of the 'White Hart'
in Hazel Grove, the licence later being taken on by James's widow
Hannah who continued to run the pub for many years. It is still in
business today at 259 London Road, not far from the new 'Wilfred
Wood.' Wilfred, who at the time of the award of his VC lived at
52 Chester Road, started his career as an engine cleaner with the
London and North Western Railway (LNWR), based at Stockport Edgeley
loco shed. As such, he would not have been required to join the army as
the railways had to be kept running, and it was not until 1917 that he
enlisted, like most local men, in the Cheshire Regiment, later
transferring to the Northumberland Fusiliers. He returned to the
railway after the War, being promoted to fireman in May 1919, and
eventually graduated to the role of driver in 1936 - in steam days such
a long wait for promotion was quite normal. He retired from British
Railways in 1960; by then he was a supervisor at Longsight depot in
The LNWR named one of its 'Claughton' class 4-6-0 express passenger
locomotives, no.1097, Private W.Wood
V.C. after him in 1922. This loco became no. 5988 when the
LNWR was absorbed into the new London Midland and Scottish Railway
(LMS) in 1923, and in 1926 the name was transferred to sister
loco 6018. This engine was taken out of service in 1926 and the
name passed to new 4-6-0 'Patriot' class Locomotive 5536. This became
45536 when the LMS became part of British Railways in 1948, and rebuilt
later that year with a larger boiler; it was withdrawn in 1962.
Archive has a picture of Mr Wood with the loco.
The story of the two nameplates from 45536 is somewhat unclear.
One is in the Northumberland
Fusiliers Museum at Alnwick Castle. One was presented by Mr Wood
himself to Norbury Primary School in 1976, but where was this before it
was (reportedly) brought to Hazel Grove in 1976, and where it is now,
as the school closed some years ago? Sometime later, if our
memory serves, a version of the name could be seen attached by local
staff to one of the diesel shunters at Longsight depot.
He is also commemorated, in a half-hearted way, by the Woodgrove Court
retirement flats in Peter Street near Sainsbury's, which, it is said,
'takes its name from a combination of Wilfred Wood, who lived in the
area and was awarded the Victoria Cross during WW1 and the name of the
Acknowledgments are due to the Bramhall
Group of the Cheshire Family History Society for many of the above
29 August 2010
The Bridge is back!
The refurbished footbridge span was craned into place sometime around
5-6 August, and work began on connecting it to the approaches either
Note that it has been re-painted in its 'old' colours rather than the
blue theme recently applied to the rest of the station, including the
entrance gates (below)
CCTV to finally arrive?
In December 2009 the Greater Manchester Integrated Transport Authority
(GMITA) told us that 'Installation of Customer Information Systems,
Public Address Systems, Closed Circuit Television Monitoring and
Passenger Help Points Urmston, Levenshulme, Heald Green, East Didsbury,
Gatley, Mills Hill, Davenport, Bryn, Littleborough and Horwich Parkway
is expected to commence in the New Year with completion by end of April
Nothing much happened, but we now receive the exciting news that this
work will now be done 'by the autumn.' At the time of writing this, the
Customer Information System which we already have has been out of
action for at least a fortnight.
4 August 2010
Our friendly local Greengrocer, the 'Garden of Eden' on Bramhall Lane,
now has a website, www.thegoe.co.uk,
Nearby, the 'Bargain Booze' shop is closed and shuttered following a
fire on 27 July, which is believed to have been an arson
attack by persons unknown.
Down the road, by the 'Jolly Sailor', work is going on to re-open the
former Thresher off-licence under new ownership - Abbey Retail (Mcr)
Ltd. We hear it is to be a 'convenience store' in direct competition to
the smaller establishment next door.
4 August 2010.
Station gets a new look
Work is under way to repaint the painted parts of the station in a new
scheme featuring blue in place of the previous red. Some have expressed
concerns that this not a traditional colour, but at least it is good to
see the place being cared for.
The return of the footbridge, removed for 'refurbishment' on 21 March,
supposedly for ten weeks, is still awaited.
27 July 2010
The large Co-operative store in Hazel Grove is closing down from 7pm on
10 August, having been sold to Asda, who will be opening in October.
While it is closed, a new direct road
entrance to the car park from the A6 will be opened up, replacing the
current entrance on Brewers Green. Work has in fact already started:
details of the project can be found
on the A6 Highways website.
Elsewhere, the Co-op store in the centre of Stockport, which has been
in business for many years, and recently traded under the name
'Westgate' is to close early in 2011, the building having been sold to
Class 180s to remain with Northern?
The three 5-coach Class 180 inter-city style trains which have recently
been in use by Northern Rail were due to be transferred to the East
Coast Main Line at the end of 2010, for use on a new service between
Lojdon Kings Cross and Lincoln. However, this plan has now been
cancelled as a money-saving measure; it would seem there is a chance
that Northern will be able to retain their 180s for a while longer.
To travel in style to Manchester and beyond, be sure to catch the 09:37
or 16:35 from Davenport, and the return train from Preston which calls
at Deansgate 15:12, Oxford Road 15:16 and Piccadilly 15:21.
27 July 2010
The Cotton Mill Express is back
'From the Railway Touring Company: 'It's back! Our special Cotton Mill
Express train, recalling the great textile heritage around Manchester,
returns on Saturday 17 July by
popular demand to provide another wonderful day out. The tour has been
extended to start and finish in Lancaster and also serves Preston and
Wigan North Western. We pick up the old route at Manchester Victoria.
'The Railway Touring Company is offering £5pp discount when you
quote CMM on this exciting day excursion. For more information or to
book visit our website at www.railwaytouring.co.uk
or contact us on 01553 661500.'
Expected locomotive for the tour is steam 4-6-0 6115 Scots Guardsman; Manchester
passengers board at approx. 10:00 or 14:43 and return at about 17:30.
Fares start at £60 for adults.
- 8 July 2010
Cale Green Park Fun Day, Sunday 4 July
The Crazy Tramps trampoline act, plus Tea,
Coffee & Homemade Cakes are back at the Cale Green Park Fun Day, on
Sunday 4 July from 1 pm to 5 pm!
There's also Face Painting, Craft Stalls, Line Dancing, Raffle,
Children’s Fancy Dress Competition (judging at 3.45 pm), and music from
Annie's Saints & Sinners Jazz Band.
The event, which is Sponsored by Cale Green Park
Residents’ Association and the Community Foundation for Greater
Manchester (Grassroots Fund) is free to enter. Cale Green Park is
opposite Davenport station.
New Timetable from 23 May
There is a change of timetable from 23 May, but the times for the
Davenport line show little change. (The new booklet can be downloaded
from the Northern
website.) Sadly, the same faults are still apparent: notably
the lack of direct trains from Manchester Oxford Road on weekday
evenings, with a two-hour gap on Mondays to Fridays from 16:16 to the
18:16 which is the last through train from Oxford Road, the most
convenient station for theatres, etc., and the irritating breaks in the
rhythm of departures to Manchester shown by the 14:05 and 16:35 trains
to Manchester departing two or three minutes earlier than the normal
time on weekdays. And as before, all trains (except perhaps one?) are
formed of diesel units even though the line to Hazel Grove is
electrified. One of our councillors is Stockport's member of the
Intergated Transport Authority, maybe he will be able to raise these
matters in the appropriate quarter?
100 Years of Princess Road bus depot
A new book, produced to
celebrate the 100th year of the Princess Road depot, is a stunning
pictorial history of local transport, compiled from images supplied by
people from across the region. It traces the history of the last
century of transport around Manchester, and how the region has evolved.
Created with submissions from
local people following an appeal in the local press in 2009 it tells a
pictorial story of how the depot and the vehicles it has housed over
the past century, alongside real photos from real people who have
contributed to transport over the years. Contributors include Hazel Grove
resident, Edna Power, who donated a photo of her father, Manchester
Corporation Transport Chief Fire Officer, Mr. Robert John Maun, aboard
tram number 1007. The photograph was taken as Manchester’s last tram
was arriving at Hyde Road depot, before being burned.
Eric Herbert of Urmston
donated a photo of his mother alongside a team of cleaners who kept
public transport in pristine condition, and played a huge part in
maintaining a sense of normality throughout the ‘Manchester blitz’.
All proceeds from the book
will be donated to Stagecoach Manchester’s nominated charity, Moss
Side-based Manchester Young Lives. This organisation offers youth
work, educational and training programmes to children and young people
in some of the most disadvantaged areas of Manchester. The book is on sale now, price £7,
from outlets including the
Ian Allan Bookshop, 5 Piccadilly Station Approach, Manchester.
More information on the Stagecoach
19 May 2010
Northern Rail franchise extended
Amid all the election hoo-hah, Rail News is reporting that
Northern Rail (which is a consortium of Serco and the Netherlands State
Railway) has won a two-year extension to their franchise to run trains
in our area, which will now continue until September 2011. Apparently
"Northern has improved the punctuality of its train services from 83.7%
in the 12 months to December 2004 to 91.6% in the last 12 months,
meaning that on average 200 more trains arrive on time every day now
than in 2004."
13 May 2010
Freight through Davenport
Freight trains are not common through Davenport, but here's a load of
stone diverted our way on 10 April while the line through Bredbury was
closed for engineering work.
Grand National Special
Saturday 10 April is 'Grand National' day, and as last year, East
Midlands Trains will be running one of their 'Merdian' Inter-City
trains on the Nottingham - Liverpool route to handle the extra
The train will work the 08:45 Nottingham - Liverpool
(calls Stockport 10:25), 11:52 Liverpool - Nottingham (calls Stockport
12:54), 14:45 Nottingham - Liverpool (calls Stockport 16:25) and
17:52 Liverpool - Nottingham (calls Stockport 18:54).
April: Trains are replaced
by buses between Stockport and Manchester due to engineering work.
Trains towards Buxton will depart Davenport approximately 20 minutes
later than normal. Northern Rail have a PDF Timetable
A very strange news item in the Stockport
A transport revolution is on the
cards following Stockport’s decision to vote ‘yes’ to the Manchester
‘super-council’. In an exclusive interview with the Express, Councillor Goddard
revealed he expects a united Manchester to kick-start both Stockport’s
regeneration and its transport links with a major cash injection.
Coun Goddard said: "They have agreed Stockport is a special case and
there should be a committee looking at its specific transport
problems," he said. "Stockport has historically not received the
benefits but now I have negotiated that there will be a high level
officer group that looks at this – that’s new and has come out of
this." Likely improvements will include new railway stations at Cheadle
and Gatley, more trains between Stockport and Manchester, and electric
railway lines to Hazel Grove.
Is the reporter confused, or doesn't Cllr Goddard know the Hazel Grove
line is already electrified, even though Northern Rail choose not to
run any electric trains on it? Who knows? What makes them think there
can be more trains between Stockport and Manchester, when the line is
already said to be so congested that some trains from Chester have to
turn terminate at Stockport?
Those viaduct fences
We are told that the fences on the end of the platforms at Stockport,
illustrated here recently, have been erected to stop suicidal people
walking on to the viaduct with a view to jumping off. Sad.
The Western Rocks, 20 March
Richard Putley has kindly
sent these pictures of the railtour to Buxton hauled by D1015 Western Champion on 20 March. The
train stopped at Denton (above) for the passengers to take pictures at
this station which normally only sees one train a week.
After passing through Davenport, the train reached Buxton (above)
before returning via Peak Forest and the Hope Valley line.
Speaking of special trains, locally-based
Royal Scots Grey.
Spot the difference
The main girder structure of the station footbridge was removed over
the night of 20-21 March and taken away for refurbishment. There was an
idea at one time to move it to the car park and work on it there, but
this has not happened. The scaffolding arrangement supports the cables
for the information screens, which were previously carried in trunking
fixed to the bridge.
A Deltic to Edinburgh with Retro Railtours
Locally based charter train organisers Retro Railtours and running an
excursion from Stockport to Edinburgh on 31 May, with adult fares from
just £49.50. The train will be hauled by celebrity 'Deltic'
locomotive 55 022 Royal Scots Grey.
booking at www.retrorailtours.co.uk
A 'Western' though Davenport
An excursion hauled by preserves 'Western' class diesel-hydraulic
locomotive D1015 Western Champion
will be passing through Davenport on Saturday 20 March. Some timings
12.30, Buxton arrive 13.05, depart 16.15,
returns a different way, via Peak Forest (17:05) and Edale.
If you take a picture of this train, please send it to us for display
The Great Western Express
Our friends at the Mid-Cheshire Rail Users Association are running an
excursion to Oxford, Bath and Bristol on Saturday 8 May which picks up
at Stockport. Full details and online booking at www.mcrua.org.uk.
Easter Farmers' Market in Cale Green Park
On Easter Monday, the Friends of Cale Green Park will be hosting the
first ever farmers' market in the Park (opposite Davenport station.)
There will be an Easter Egg Hunt, but the real attraction will be the
produce at the stalls ... The market is the one that used to take place
at Heaton Mersey Park. More details at: www.calegreenparkresidents.org.uk
Lifting out the footbridge for refurbshment is clearly not going to
plan, as it is still there on 12 March and looks likely still to be
there for a couple of weeks yet. The picture shows some men in orange
suits looking at the problem, or maybe waiting for something....
Building of the two 'affordable' homes on the empty site in Oakfield
Road is proceeding at great speed. The red colour is the plastic
protecting the timber framing. Notice how close the frontages are to
the pavement, although the developers have increased this distance to
1.7 metres after their original planning application was refused. The
council's other objection, that future residents would suffer noise and
inconvenience from the workplaces opposite, would seem to still apply.
Apparently the houses will have cycle shed, solar panels, and wind
document concerning this site.) As usual, the
picture shows parked vehicles obstructing the pedestrian area.
At Stockport station, sturdy fences have been erected to stop people
walking off the ends of the platforms. Why?
Some peace and traquillity: model sailing boats on Edgeley Reservoir.
Model Railways at
The New Mills Railway Modellers are holding their annual exhibition on
27 and 28 February. It will be held at Chapel-en-le-Frith High School, Long Lane, Chapel, ten
minutes' walk down the road from Chapel-en-le-Frith station.
There should be 23 layouts attending
good dose of traders/preservation
open from 10 am until 5 pm both days and light refreshments are also
available. More info at www.nmdrm.co.uk
More about the Davenport footbridge
The project to refurbish Davenport's station footbridge is under way,
as you may realise from the signs that have been posted. The intention
had been to lift out the bridge span on 20 February, until it was
realised that trunking carrying the connections to the information
screens was attached to the bottom of it. The 'big lift' is now
planned to happen, all being well, over the night of 26-27 February.
From next week passengers will need to access the platforms via the
ramp and stairs direct from the road.
Bramhall Lane website
Our very own main street, Bramhall Lane, now has its own website - www.bramhalllane.co.uk -
complete with a Twitter feed! Why not pay it a visit?
Mosley Street station to close?
The Greater Manchester Integrated Transport Authority are proposing to
close and remove the one-way Manchester Metrolink station at Mosley
Street, which exists to a more frequent service from the Piccadilly
area towards Altrincham than is offered in the daytime (as services
from both Bury and Piccadilly station can call), despite surveys which
show that on average 36 passengers board there in the peak period.
The new trams do not have steps for low platforms, so if a coupled pair
of them was to call at this stop, the whole platform would have to be
built up to high level like the one at St Peters Square has been
already. Apparently this would cost £1.2 million, compared to
£300,000 for removing the station altogether. There is also
a concern that stopping there when far more trams are running in the
future would cause congestion.
Here is the GMITA's
document on the proposal (PDF)
Sunday timetable changes
For some unexplained reason, there are some small changes to the times
of Sunday morning trains from Davenport with effect from 7 February.
The first train on Sundays now leaves two minutes earlier at 09:02 and
continues through to Manchester Piccadilly instead of terminating at
Stockport. The following trains to Manchester are 11:06. 12:06 and
13:08, then at 08 minutes past each hour until 22:06. Towards Buxton,
departures from Davenport are 09:13 (20
previously), 10:09, then at 09 minutes past
each hour until 23:09.
Travel in Style
If you fancy a pleasant day or evening out, using an especially
consider one of the services on Mondays to Fridays which are
scheduled for one of the 5-coach 'class 180' trains currently on loan
to Northern Rail, which have plenty of seats, including some
ex-first-class ones, and air-conditioning. The trains to look for are:
Updated 30 January
- 09:37 from Davenport to Manchester Piccadilly, Oxford Road,
Deansgate, Salford Crescent, Bolton and Preston. This is the first
train of the day on which Cheap Day Returns are valid.
- 14:23 from Preston via Bolton (14:56), Salford Crescent
(15:09), Deansgate (15:12), Manchester Oxford Road (15:14) and
Piccadilly (15:21) to Hazel Grove (calls at Davenport 15:39)
- 16:35 from Davenport to Manchester Piccadilly, Oxford Road,
Deansgate, Bolton and Preston - note that this departs Davenport
earlier than the normal
xx:37 or 38 timing for some unknown reason.
Following on from the recent announcement of the resignation of
Northern Rail Managing Director Heidi Mottram (taking her OBE with her)
we hear of further departures from among the Northern Rail upper
Paul Salveson, the guru of the 'Community Railways' idea, is taking up
a post with Grand Central, the 'open access' company which runs a few
trains a day between Sunderland and London Kings Cross.
Also heading for pastures new is Ruud Haket, Northern's Engineering
Director, who, as his name suggests, came to Northern from the
Netherlands Railways, joint owners of the franchise. While rumour has
it that he was not universally popular with the staff at Newton Heath
neither have he and his staff had an easy task looking after the
assorted collection of ageing stock that forms the Northern Rail fleet.
In any case, the franchise system itself, with companies created for a
life of just a few years, does not encourage senior managers to stay.
Northern started in November 2004 and has the franchise for 8 years 9
months. What happens after that is anyone's guess.
Updated 30 January
Welcome to 2010
Congratulations to Northern Rail for keeping a train service running on
our line, even to Buxton over one of the highest summits in England,
the snowy weather.
7 January: Cold conditions are affecting some trains this morning. See
Departures website. (To find out about Hazel Grove - Preston
Trains, you will need to check 65 minutes before your planned departure
time to see if the incoming train from Preston is running.)
Northern Rail have a Twitter feed for disruption information: twitter.com/NRE_northern