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Hope Valley Railway Upgrade completion offers better journeys between Manchester and Sheffield

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Rail Minister Huw Merriman will visit Dore & Totley station today (Monday 8 April) to mark the completion of the £150m Hope Valley Railway Upgrade.

Minister Huw Merriman will officially open the new and fully accessible platform at Dore & Totley station in Sheffield, the first time the station has had two platforms since the 1980s. The new platform is linked to the existing platform by a fully accessible footbridge with lifts at both ends. The existing platform at Dore & Totley has also been extended to accommodate 6 carriage trains.

The visit also signifies the end of the multi-million-pound Hope Valley Railway Upgrade programme, which began in Spring 2021 and has delivered various improvements to the line between Manchester and Sheffield.

Other key improvements of the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade include signalling improvements along the line to improve reliability and a new overbridge at Hathersage West, replacing the current foot crossing to improve safety.

A 1 km railway loop has been installed between Bamford and Hathersage, allowing faster services to overtake slower trains relieving an historic bottleneck.

Additional track has also been installed to the South of Dore & Totley station to relieve a longstanding freight train bottleneck.

Work undertaken on the recent closure of the line from 16-25 March saw track installation and drainage works finalised, alongside the final work at Dore & Totley station. Passengers were kept moving through alternative travel plans.  

The Happy Valley Railway Upgrade has been delivered by the Transpennine Route Upgrade working with StoryVolker JV.

Rail Minister Huw Merriman said:

“I am delighted to be in Sheffield today to mark the completion of the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade – another project delivered which demonstrates our continued commitment to improving transport in the North of England.

“This Government funded scheme means passengers will now benefit from improved reliability and accessibility when travelling between Sheffield and Manchester.

“The upgrade is just one of hundreds we’re delivering, with more to come as part of our Network North plan made possible by reallocated HS2 funding – carrying out even further upgrades on this vital line, including electrification, to cut journey times and improve capacity for thousands of passengers.”

Neil Holm, Managing Director of TRU said:

“The completion of the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade is a great step for train travel in the North, and I’m thrilled to be able to make it official alongside the Rail Minister, Huw Merriman, at Dore & Totley today.

“After three years of hard work and planning, passengers between Manchester and Sheffield can enjoy a much-improved railway.”

Dore new footbridge

Ben Shaw, Sponsor for the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade said:

“We’re delighted to be able to invite the Rail Minister to Dore & Totley to celebrate the completion of the programme.

“The Hope Valley Railway Upgrade team worked tirelessly to deliver these upgrades, that will ensure improved rail services between Manchester and Sheffield.

“I’d like to thank all of our passengers and residents along the route for their patience and support as we carried out these essential upgrades.”

Image credit: Network Rail

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