Monthly Archives: January 2017

Outline costs revealed for Beattock, Thornhill and Eastriggs

The outline costs and challenges for the proposed railway stations at Beattock, Thornhill and Eastriggs have been revealed in papers to a board meeting of SWestrans. Beattock would cost around £14-15m, with new services required to serve the railway station.

Thornhill and Eastriggs are expected to cost £8-11m but a timetable recast affecting a number of services would be required to support a stop at this station unless changes are made to rail services on the route such as new trains, timetable padding removal or line speed increases.


Thanet Parkway consultation opens

A consultation into the outline design for Thanet Parkway has opened. It will be located on the Ashford International to Ramsgate line, and just to the west of the village of Cliffsend. The station is designed to be unstaffed with two platforms and a variety of facilities, including ticket vending machines and passenger help and information points providing remote assistance.

The consultation runs until 19 March 2017. The consultation document also confirms that the council has submitted a bid to the New Stations Fund.

Construction work start triggers Meridian Water railway station

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan visited the Meridian Water regeneration site as construction enabling works formally started on the first 725 new homes and Enfield Council announced a major programme of activity for its flagship £6bn regeneration scheme.

The programme of activity includes the opening of Meridian Water railway station in 2019, which will replace Angel Road station nearby.

Northern line extension tunnelling to commence in March

The Mayor of London has announced that tunnelling to create an extension of the Northern line between Kennington and Battersea will begin in March.

Sadiq Khan confirmed news of tunnelling for the first major Tube line extension since the 1990s as two gigantic tunnel boring machines were unveiled in Battersea. The two 650-tonne machines, each the length of a football pitch, will create two 3.2km underground tunnels to extend the Charing Cross branch of the Northern line from Kennington to Battersea, via Nine Elms.

According to tunnelling tradition, the machines cannot start work until given a name and, following a vote by local school children, the machines are being named Helen and Amy in honour of the first British astronaut, Helen Sharman, and British aviation pioneer Amy Johnson, who was the first female pilot to fly solo from Britain to Australia.

The two tunnel boring machines were built by NFM Technologies in Le Creusot in central France. They were shipped to London earlier this year and reassembled in Battersea. Each tunnel boring machine has a rotating cutterhead at the front which is pressed against the tunnel face by hydraulic cylinders. A series of trailers behind house all the mechanical and electrical equipment and a conveyor belt removes the earth.

The machines will undertake two individual tunnel drives at depths of up to 26 metres to construct the 5.2 metre diameter east and westbound tunnels. Each machine is capable of tunnelling up to 30 metres per day with teams of around 50 people needed to operate them.  The work is expected to take around six months to complete. As they advance forward, nearly 20,000 pre-cast concrete segments will be built in rings behind them.

Council approves Maghull North plans

The development of a new station in Maghull has moved a step closer after planning permission was granted for the scheme at a Sefton Council planning committee meeting this week (Wednesday 18th January).

The planning committee approved plans for the new Maghull North station, which will be located just off School Lane, between the existing Maghull and Town Green stations on the Ormskirk branch of Merseyrail’s Northern Line.

The station is a key piece of infrastructure in the Sefton Local Plan, supporting demand from an adjacent new housing development which will include 370 homes, with more homes planned for the area in the near future. It will also offer relief for the existing station in the town.

The £13m scheme is being funded through the Government’s Local Growth Fund (LGF), Merseytravel and the Homes and Communities Association, which currently owns the land on which the station will be built. It will form part of the wider £340m investment by Network Rail and the Liverpool City Region in rail improvements over the next three years.

Facilities at the new station will include:-

  • Staffed station building and ticket office with passenger toilet.
  • Passenger waiting facilities on platform
  • Step-free access with lifts and a bridge to, from and between both platforms and the station building.
  • 156-space car park with blue badge, motorcycle parking and cycle storage.
  • Pedestrian and cycle routes from School Lane and Park Lane to the station and bus stops on School Lane.
  • Future provision for electric vehicle charging points.

Work is due to start on site in August 2017, with the station opening planned for May 2018.

More information on the scheme can be found at