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  • Stafford – Crewe rail enhancements

    We're improving the railway around Stafford so journeys between London, the Midlands, North West and Scotland are faster, more frequent and more reliable

  • On schedule

    Untangling the railway lines at Norton Bridge Junction, and improvements around Stafford, will make the railway more reliable for passengers and freight customers.

    Delivering three key projects, the Staffordshire Area Improvements Programme will create extra capacity, allowing capability to deliver more trains on the route and shortening journey times. It will also reduce congestion and delays in the Stafford area.

  • The benefits

  • More services

    • Two extra trains per hour (off peak) in each direction between London Euston and the North West.

    • One additional fast train per hour in each direction between Manchester (Stone) and Birmingham.

    • One additional freight path per hour in each direction through Stafford via Trent Valley, helping take lorries off congested roads such as the M6.

    Faster journeys

    The improvements between Crewe and Norton Bridge, completed in March 2014, increased the maximum speed on the "slow" lines used by freight and local passenger trains from 75 to 100 mph.

    Further linespeed increases between Stafford and Great Bridgeford (just south of Norton Bridge) followed from August 2015, after the resignalling work around Stafford is completed.


    Stafford resignalling ►

    Through Stafford station and in the surrounding area we've replaced the signalling, power supplies and telecoms equipment, and installed bi-directional signalling for all platforms.

    We’ve also added a new freight loop which will reduce congestion.

    This work was completed in summer 2015.

    Norton Bridge ►

    A Development Consent Order has been granted by the Secretary of State for Transport allowing us to build six miles of new 100mph railway, a new flyover and ten new bridges.

    This will require the diversion of major utilities, a road, a river and a footpath, and the construction of 5km of temporary roads.

    The main works are scheduled to run from spring 2014 to December 2016, a year earlier than initially predicted.



    Stafford-Crewe timeline  

    1 February 2013: Work to increase the line speeds starts
    2 Early 2014: Stafford resignalling on-site work starts
    3 Spring 2014: Work starts on the Norton Bridge flyover and associated works
    4 Spring 2014: Work to increase line speeds between Crew and Norton Bridge from 75mph to 100mph completes
    5 Summer 2015: Commissioning of Stafford resignalling including the closure of signal boxes 4 and 5, this section of the West Coast Main Line is controlled by a new operating centre at Rugby
    6 Winter 2016: Work on the new track and signalling around Norton Bridge completes (one year ahead of schedule)
    7 Winter 2017: Introduction of the new West Coast Main Line timetable
  • Staffordshire Alliance

    These enhancements are being delivered by the Staffordshire Alliance, a partnership of Atkins, Laing O’Rourke, Network Rail and VolkerRail, working as part of a new collaborative contract that will help to transform the delivery of rail infrastructure projects in the UK.