A £1m package of upgrades to Bolton station has been announced by Network Rail, Northern and TransPennine Express.
Between now and spring this year:
• new seating and signage will be fitted
• station toilets and waiting rooms will be revamped
• pigeon netting will be fitted to help keep the space clean
• And the under-used Victorian building on platforms four and five will be refurbished for potential retail, enterprise and community use.
Amy Clare, associate sponsor at Network Rail, said: “The Manchester-Preston line upgrade is almost complete. This will allow faster, more frequent, more reliable electric trains to run from May onwards.
“In addition to that, the rail industry is investing a further £1m to make things fresher and nicer for train customers at Bolton. We hope station-users notice the difference.”
Chris Jackson, regional director at Northern, said: “These fantastic improvements at Bolton station will go hand-in-hand with our own plans which, in the very near future, will see the introduction of brand new trains serving the town – and beyond.
“We are also investing millions in improvements at stations meaning that wherever you travel on a Northern train you will enjoy a better journey than ever before.”
Kathryn O’Brien, customer experience director for TransPennine Express, said: “2019 is a big year for customers in the north with many new trains coming into service, providing a much improved experience, more seats and faster trains. It’s great that we are working with the rail industry to invest in a station that Bolton can be proud of, providing customers with facilities that will make their experience of rail travel more rewarding.”
Professor Paul Salveson MBE, chair of Bolton Station Community Development Partnership, said: “This is great news. The work will completely transform this historic station, laying the basis for some really exciting and creative community and arts-based projects at the station which will give it a new vibrancy, making it an attractive and welcoming place for passengers.”
Councillor David Chadwick, portfolio holder for transport at Bolton council, said: “These proposals complement the £100 million investment in the Town Centre by Bolton Council and £48 million by TfGM.
“Investment in Bolton is at a well-deserved high and Network Rail’s contribution will hopefully enhance the customer experience at the station. Many of the existing platform facilities are in need of urgent upgrade. This is great news for the Town.”
Over the last few months, Network Rail, Northern, TransPennine Express and local community groups have worked closely together to identify opportunities to enhance the passenger experience at Bolton station. These discussions have led to the pooling of funding streams to bring forward the refurbishment of the building on platform four and five for potential retail, enterprise and community use, as well as better seating, waiting rooms, toilets and pest deterrence.
Notes to editors:
The Manchester-Preston upgrade is an integral part of the Great North Rail Project. It has involved the widening and rebuilding of Farnworth tunnel, remodelling of tracks and platforms through Chorley and Bolton stations, the renewal of 13,883m of track, replacement of 93 signals, and the laying of 236,000m of cables.
Poor ground conditions and the collapse of Carillion, the principle contractor for the scheme caused the scheme to be delayed by over two years.
With all major infrastructure work complete, one overnight final test train remains, which once complete in mid-February, will enable faster and more comfortable journeys, as well as new direct services across the North and beyond over the next year.