Merseyside railway upgrades brought forward during emergency Lime Street repairs

While Liverpool Lime Street was closed for emergency repairs, engineers seized the chance to bring forward a series of railway improvements, Network Rail revealed today (9 March).

With no trains running in or out of Liverpool’s main station, the orange army made a start on must-do railway upgrades which were planned in for later in the year.

Martin Frobisher, Network Rail’s London North Western route managing director, said: “As repairs were made to the cutting wall we seized the opportunity to carry out additional railway upgrades. This speedy local decision-making is a result of Network Rail’s drive to be better for the customers and communities we serve. We were thrilled to get Lime Street passengers back on the move again a day earlier than first forecast – and equally pleased to have done some extra improvements while we had the chance. Today we’re saying ‘thank you’ to customers with cake.”

The additional work completed included:

• detailed structural surveys of the area
• demolishing a number of former buildings within and near the station
• installing a number of under-track crossings channels which take power cables from one side of a railway line to another.

Passengers at Liverpool Lime Street were given cakes this morning to thank them for their patience over the past week.

After reopening the station more than 24 hours earlier than planned due to faster than forecast repair progress, Network Rail staff handed out 2,000 cakes.

Network Rail’s orange army worked round the clock for a week to reopen the four tracks into the station after hundreds of tonnes of debris slipped from behind a retaining wall, more than 10 metres above the railway, damaging track and overhead wires, on Tuesday 28 February. The repair job included removing 4,000 tonnes of material from the top of the cutting, clearing debris from the tracks and repairing damage to the overhead wires, signalling equipment and rails.

London Midland’s head of route, Steve Fisher said: “I’d like to thank all our customers for the patience and understanding they have shown while Lime Street station was closed.”

Kathryn O’Brien, customer experience director for TransPennine Express, said: “We are really pleased that Liverpool Lime Street has now reopened which is brilliant news for customers.”

Arif Mahmood, Virgin Trains station manager at Lime Street, said: “We’d like to thank customers for their patience and our people for helping to keep things moving during this disruption.”

Sharon Keith, regional director for Northern, said: “It’s great to have Lime Street operational again, allowing us to provide our customers with a full service to and from Liverpool.

“The landslip created a significant challenge for the rail industry and it is testament to all involved that as well as the engineering work carried out by Network Rail being completed ahead of schedule, we were able to keep moving people in and out of the city.”

Jake Kelly, managing director of East Midlands Trains said: “We’d like to thank our customers for their prolonged patience over the past few days whilst work has been taking place at Liverpool Lime Street.”