The Anonymous Widower

Adding Southport And Stalybridge Via Atherton To The Bee Network

This article on the Railway Gazette has a list of the lines, that will be transferred between Northern Rail and the Bee Network.

Included in the list is this line.

Southport And Stalybridge Via Atherton.

I think this route could be the following.

  • The Eastern terminal would be Stalybridge.
  • The Northern terminal would be Southport.
  • Intermediate stations would be Meols Cop, Bescar Lane, New Lane, Burscough Bridge, Parbold, Appley Bridge, Gathurst, Wigan Wallgate, Hindley, Daisy Hill, Hag Fold, Atherton, Walkden, Swinton, Salford Crescent, Salford Central, Manchester Victoria and Ashton-under-Lyne
  • The route is partly electrified with 25 KVAC overhead.
  • Mich of the route has a 75 mph operating speed.

Currently, this service runs hourly, by a slightly different route to that proposed.

This is my thought.

Battery-Electric Trains


  • The route could be ideal for battery-electric trains.
  • Central Manchester and Stalybridge will soon be electrified.
  • A charging station could be added at Southport station.

Merseyrail’s Class 777 trains or something similar would surely do nicely.


March 27, 2023 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , ,


  1. […] Stalybridge – Southport via Atherton […]

    Pingback by Manchester Buzzing To Put Rail Into Its Bee Network « The Anonymous Widower | March 27, 2023 | Reply

  2. This route runs east west so Southport is the western terminus.
    The current routing is via Bolton.
    The shorter route is via Atherton.
    There used to be a Club train long time ago which was non-stop except for Meols Cop pickup or setdown of commuters – 10 coach train or so in the 60s – at that time the direct route out of Southport via Blowick was still open. I think the Blowick direct route was a Beeching casualty.

    Comment by chilterntrev | March 28, 2023 | Reply

  3. Network Rail is currently electrifying Wigan to Bolton via Hindley and Westhaughton. I doubt TOC’s will want to run trains through the slower unelectrified Atherton route with five intermediate stops (BOL to SLD is mostly 90mph).

    Comment by R. Mark Clayton | March 28, 2023 | Reply

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