The Anonymous Widower

DfT To Have Final Say On Huddersfield Rebuild Of Rail Station And Bridges

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on Rail Technology Magazine.

This is the first paragraph.

As part of the £1.4bn Transpennine Route Upgrade. Transport Secretary Grant Shapps is to rule on planned changes to Huddersfield’s 19th century rail station and not the Kirklees council, in what is to be a huge revamp of the line between Manchester and York.

According to the article eight bridges are to be replaced or seriously modified.

As Huddersfield station (shown) is Grade I listed and three other Grade II listed buildings and structures are involved, I can see this project ending up with a substantial bill for lawyers.

But then, to have a world-class railway across the Pennines, a few eggs will need to be broken.

Electric Trains Across The Pennine

This page on the Network Rail web site describes the Huddersfield To Westtown (Dewsbury) Upgrade.

When the upgrade and the related York To Church Fenton Improvement Scheme is completed, the TransPennine route between Huddersfield and York will be fully-electrified.

As Manchester To Stalybridge will also have been electrified, this will mean that the only section without electrification will be the eighteen miles across the Pennines between Stalybridge and Huddersfield.

Will this final eighteen miles ne electrified?

Eighteen miles with electrification at both ends will be a short jump for a Hitachi Intercity Tri-Mode Battery Train, the specification of which is shown in this Hitachi infographic.

The Class 802 trains of TransPennine Express are able to be converted into these trains.

The trains could work these routes.

  • Liverpool Lime Street and Scarborough
  • Manchester Airport and Redcar
  • Liverpool Lime Street and Edinburgh via Newcastle
  • Manchester Airport and Newcastle
  • Manchester Piccadilly and Hull
  • Manchester Airport and Cleethorpes

Note.

  1. I suspect some more Class 802 trains with batteries will be needed.
  2. The trains would either use battery or diesel power to reach Hull, Redcar and Scarborough or there could be a few miles of electrification to stretch battery range.
  3. Will the Class 68 diesel locomotives be replaced with Class 93 tri-mode locomotives to haul the Mark 5A coaches to Scarborough.
  4. Manchester Airport and Cleethorpes could be a problem and will probably need some electrification around Sheffield and Grimsby.

This would just mean TransPennine’s two short routes to be decarbonised.

  • Manchester Piccadilly and Huddersfield
  • Huddersfield and Leeds

As except for the eighteen mile gap between Stalybridge and Huddersfield, these two routes are fully-electrified, I suspect that a battery-electric version of a 110 mph electric train like a Class 387 or Class 350 train could run these routes.

Conclusion

It looks like if these sections of the TransPennine Express network are upgraded and electrified.

  • York and Church Fenton
  • Huddersfield and Westtown
  • Manchester and Staylebridge

Together with a few extra miles of electrification at strategic points, that TransPennine Express will be able to decarbonise.

 

May 18, 2021 - Posted by | Transport | , , , , , , , , , ,

3 Comments »

  1. Some information about reduced journey times and/or increased average line speeds would be a good way of showing the benefits which would accrue.

    Comment by Thomas Carr | May 18, 2021 | Reply

  2. > When the upgrade and the related York To Church Fenton Improvement Scheme is completed, the TransPennine route between Huddersfield and York will be fully-electrified

    not true. There’s still the section between Neville Hill and Church Fenton. I’ve not seen anything about this anywhere. It could be that NR are waiting to see what the Integrated Rail Plan proposes. Leeds-York passenger services could be catered for by that.

    Also, don’t forget that electrification isn’t just for passenger services, but also for freight. If you’ve not seen it, Railfreight Solutions have just published their list of priorities for freight services https://www.railfreightsolutions.com/uploads/8/7/0/8/87088186/tdns_railfreight_solutions_priority_order_may_21.pdf. A large part of this is concentrated on the S Pennines/E Midlands area that’s been neglected up till now.

    Comment by Peter Robins | May 19, 2021 | Reply

    • I feel that for Network Rail to just carry on to Neville Hill would be a sensible solution.

      As to freight, I very much feel that the maths would allow a hydrogen-electric locomotive of the size and power of a Class 66 to be developed, that would have applications all over the world. I suspect that the market is very large and someone like Stadler or Wabtec will go for it. It will be powered by a small gas-turbine engine. Rolls-Royce already have one with a power output of around 2.5 MW. These can also run on Sustainable Aviation Fuel.

      Comment by AnonW | May 19, 2021 | Reply


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