Information uncovered by Stalybridge and Hyde MP Jonathan Reynolds has forced the Government to admit that the planned electrification of the TransPennine rail line between Manchester and York has been delayed, with no date set for completion.
In a written answer to Mr Reynolds, Rail Minister Andrew Jones conceded that work would be delayed as Network Rail have decided that more work will be needed than originally planned. Mr Reynolds also plans to write to both the Minister and Network Rail to demand a meeting.
The electrification of the route was first announced in November 2011 as part of a wider programme to improve rail services in the North of England. The Manchester to York electrification would include stations such as Stalybridge, Guide Bridge and Leeds, with work originally expected to be completed by December 2018 which has now been plunged into doubt following the Government’s admission.
Commenting on the Government’s admittance that the work was to be delayed, a furious Mr Reynolds said:
“I am incredibly disappointed by the admission today by the Government and Network Rail that work on the TransPennine rail line will not be completed on time.
We are now in a situation where passenger numbers are increasing at stations like Stalybridge and Mossley and this electrification is badly needed, yet the Government and Network rail cannot even give a set date when the delayed work will be completed. This is unacceptable, and I will be writing to the Rail Minister and Network Rail to demand a meeting with both.”