Sheffield builds head of steam in Restoring Your Railway contest

Rail services in Sheffield could see unprecedented improvement thanks the city’s success in the Restoring Your Railway fund.

Friday, 19th March 2021, 12:57 pm

Two projects have been selected to move forward to the next stage.

Two more have been re-submitted in Round 3 after earlier, unsuccessful bids were strengthened. They are currently under assessment.

Now, the fund will pay for a feasibility study into passenger services on the Barrow Hill line between Sheffield and Chesterfield.

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Heeley station just before it opened. Credit - Sheffield Local Studies Library: Picture Sheffield.

Proposals to open a new station at Waverley have also been chosen.

The Round 3 bids under consideration include re-opening the Sheffield-Stocksbridge line to passenger services and four new stations on the Sheaf Valley line to the south east of the city.

They are among 85 bids from across the UK. The results will be revealed later this year.

The government launched the £500m Restoring Your Railway Fund last year to help reopen tracks closed in the 1960s after the Beeching report.

Paul Blomfield MP at the former Heeley, one of four that could reopen on the Sheaf Valley Line. Picture Scott Merrylees

The money is is only meant to fund feasibility studies to build business cases to restore routes.

Peter Kennan, chair of Sheffield Chamber Transport Forum, said: “I really hope that Sheffield City Region gets one of its schemes. If so, we will have done exceptionally well.

“Two successful so far is a great achievement but three or more would be fantastic.

“This is very much down to the great work done by Sheffield City Region MCAs Transport team who are not in the limelight but who put together the successful bids. They should be thanked for what they do.”

The railway at Beauchief. Picture Scott Merrylees

Earlier this month, the government announced £137m to upgrade the Hope Valley line and remove bottlenecks.

The increased capacity will allow more passenger and freight services, including an increase in fast trains to Manchester from two to three an hour.

New sections of track near Bamford will create a loop for overtaking and there will be improvements to Jaggers Lane Bridge in Hathersage and a second track at Dore and Totley station which will also have a second platform added.

Construction is expected to begin in 2022 with completion by December 2023.

Peter Kennan, chair of the transport forum at Sheffield Chamber.

Sheffield could lose its direct link to Manchester Airport under government plans to reduce delays around Manchester.

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Thank you. Nancy Fielder, editor.