Mossley train station to move in upgrade plan

MOSSLEY’S train station is earmarked to move as part of a multi-billion pound rail project.

And if all goes to plan, it will be in place within six years.

But people in the town have delivered a clear message to those behind the idea – keep us consulted.

The current facility, at the junction of Manchester Road and Stamford Road, has been deemed too tricky and costly to make fully accessible on both platforms.

So Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU) planners – who are working to electrify the line between Manchester and York – have favoured shifting it 300 metres along Manchester Road, to roughly where access gates stand now.

Mossley Train Station

Full designs are yet to be drawn up but one option may be to build a footbridge to the new extended platforms with lifts in the towers, similar to what they have done at Castleford in West Yorkshire.

The plans were revealed at a meeting of Mossley Town Council on Wednesday, February 21 in a presentation.

Mossley station’s current building, which is listed, will remain and will be repurposed, possibly for community use.

The existing car park is also set to stay and may be extended to the new building, which is needed to accommodate longer trains and make both sides accessible – it will also have a toilet, which the current one does not.

A stretch known as Mossley Cottages, behind properties on Manchester Road close to the station as it is now, will not see gantries hammered in because of their proximity.

It will be a ‘neutral section’ meaning essentially, trains will coast from the last one, just before the buildings start, to the new station and the tack will be moved slightly away from the homes, businesses and pub.

Access plans, with one idea being to use the current entrance, will be discussed when TRU meets with the town council early next year, design work does not even begin until the summer.

But Mark Ashton, one of the senior engineers behind the project spelled out what is needed – the nearest accessible platform heading to Huddersfield is Huddersfield itself, as trains would have passed Stalybridge.

He said: “You have to access platform two at Mossley via steps, which in the 21st century isn’t appropriate.

“Someone who has a pram or who has reduced mobility may not be able to get on it, Huddersfield is the nearest station with an accessible platform in that direction.

“That’s not appropriate in this day and age. It’s creating a barrier to access the station, so we need to address that.”

Rachel Thomas, project director for the Stalybridge-Huddersfield section of the upgrade, detailed why the move has been preferred.

She said: “Mossley station is in a very steep cutting. In the Huddersfield direction, it’s a very tight platform with old waiting shelters and is quite restricted in its width.

The new displays at Mossley Train station

“To allow us to gain step-free access and out in lifts, we’ve looked at a number of ideas either to put a footbridge with lifts in where the current one is now or to move to the far end of the platform.

“The issue there is the platform end tapers to almost nothing. We’ve had quite long conversations about what it would look like.

“Our proposed solution, subject to further design, is to relocate Mossley station 300 metres to the east. That will allow us the space for step-free access.

“It will allow us to put in longer platforms. At the moment, sometimes you have to go under the road bridge – that’s not really safe for us to allow longer trains. We can’t extend that platform towards Stalybridge.

“We’d create wider platforms and our current intent is to retain all of the station car park, with the potential for extra space towards the new station.

“And it’s the plan that before the end of the 2020s, subject to us getting legal consent and the funding to complete the work, the new station will be completed.

“One of our ideas was to not relocate the station but we decided there’s more room to get that step-free access and that’s the plan we’re going to move forward with.”

Not everyone at the council meeting was ecstatic at the proposal.

The possible new entrance, work to put gantries in at night close to houses, having extra freight trains thundering through and disruption while the work takes place were highlighted, as well as the lack of detailed plans and ‘joined up’ approach with housing developers.

One audience member described the line as ‘the worst in the country, it has been for a long, long time.’

Councillor Idu Miah made an impassioned plea for the town not to ‘suffer’ as the train station is more important than ever.

Cllr Amelia Bayliss asked whether the upgrade presents a chance to bring investment into Mossley. She also spoke of her experiences of rail replacement buses if the line is closed for a spell, including drivers heading the wrong way.

“So often they don’t know where Mossley is,” she said. “They don’t know who we are, they ask us for directions.

“If people knew what was coming was a proper replacement, based on the train route and they understood there are places between Huddersfield and Manchester and we aren’t just strange people here. It would be much better.”

The main ask, though, was simply a better service.

“We’ve all had long experience of such suffering on this line,” said Cllr Pat Mullin. “We were assured moving from Manchester Victoria to Piccadilly would result in a better service, that disappeared.

“The one thing we need is a minimum service guarantee, that it’s at least going to be better than the service we’ve got at this moment.”

Andrew Holstead, who has been part of the Friends of Mossley Station and Stalybridge-Huddersfield Rail User Group (SHRUG) added: “I understand the difficulties you have but I really don’t want is to be left out and pushed out by the number of fast trains.

“A commitment we have a two trains per hour service through the day at local stations would be more than welcome.”

7 Replies to “Mossley train station to move in upgrade plan”

  1. “RE PLATFORM 2 Via steps which isn’t appropriate.” What a stupid statement it has been used for 100 years plus by this method. Has the Woke society suddenly lost the use of their legs JOKE . Makes me weep

    1. “Used for 100 years plus by this method” Thats a far more stupid statement as obviously it hasn’t been used by the unfirm, elderly or disabled people or mothers with prams etc for that 100 years. The time will come David when you too will struggle to use stairs and hopefully you will then change your selfish attitude.

    2. I don’t think you have thought very hard about this. It has nothing to do with “woke” whatever that means and everything to do with accessibility. Unless, of course you are in favour of the elderly, the disabled and partially sighted staying at home at all times.

      1. It’s ok Robert. All the old nasties are using “WOKE” to mean anything they’re upset by these days. They don’t understand or care about anyone else but themselves. Don’t let the rhetoric get to you. It’s GB News and Reform UK language, apparently so it’s just angry, hate filled miserable people who can’t understand or be capable of just letting someone else be happy because they aren’t.

        God forbid we’d want to look after people who are unable to the steps for ANY reason at all, right? Trains bring many more opportunities to people in life. We should be celebrating this change.

    1. Possibly something similar will have to be done; clearances under that bridge are quite tight, and it can’t be raised

  2. We need at least two trains an hour on this line. The local service has been sacrificed to the express service.

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