The UK’s Department for Transport (DfT) has confirmed that “paused” electrification projects on the Midland Main Line and TransPennine routes will resume following a review from Network Rail’s new chairman, Sir Peter Hendy.
Hendy said the pause had given Network Rail time to develop an improved strategy, albeit with delays to the original programme.
The electrification of the Midland Main Line from Bedford to Kettering and Corby is now expected to be completed by 2019 and from Kettering to Derby and Sheffield by 2023 – two and three years later than originally planned.
The TransPennine route from Liverpool to Newcastle, via Manchester, Leeds and York, has been pushed back from December 2018 to 2022.
The DfT announcement said the review had improved on existing plans to electrify the TransPennine line between Stalybridge and Leeds, which had proposed changing the power supply of the trains.
Chairman of Network Rail Sir Peter Hendy said: “The temporary pause in the programme has given us the space to develop a better plan for passengers. People can expect more services and faster journeys.
“We face some difficult challenges, and there is more work still to do, but the Secretary of State’s decision means we can now move forward with our plans to electrify TransPennine and Midland Main Line.”