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Travel Warning - Merseyside & Cheshire 28/29 May
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New timetables and planned disruption

New half hourly services to be introduced between Manchester and Wigan/Blackburn

11 November 2017
Northern is to introduce new half hourly services from Wigan and Blackburn direct to Manchester Victoria.

As part of the train operator’s ambitious and ongoing modernisation plan, timetable enhancements will see services increase from every hour to every 30 minutes on weekdays between Manchester Victoria and Blackburn.

And services between Manchester and Wigan will run every 30 minutes on Sundays – also up from once an hour.

Liam Sumpter, Regional Director at Northern, said: “The timetable enhancements announced today are part of our modernisation programme and mark an important step forward for our customers.

“The half hourly services, to be introduced on 10 December, will offer new commuting possibilities, particularly for those in East Lancashire, and will also boost travel options for leisure travellers.”

Northern’s December 2017 timetable change will see improved services available at more than 150 stations.  Changes will also include Northern’s first train to cross the Ordsall Chord in Manchester, which will enable a direct train service between Bradford and Manchester Oxford Road station.  This infrastructure improvement will pave the way for direct access between the Calder Valley and Manchester Airport from May 2018.

The service enhancements will go hand-in-hand with further modernisation across the Northern network, including new and fully refurbished trains, better stations and more ways to buy tickets. Northern’s oldest trains (Pacers) will also be removed from the network – with the entire programme delivered by 2020

Transport for Greater Manchester’s Head of Rail, Amanda White, said: “We work to provide travel options that support the region’s economic growth and sustainability, so timetable enhancements such as these that improve connectivity and provide more opportunities for passengers are a major boost.

“We will continue to work with industry partners such as Northern to provide the best possible future rail network for Greater Manchester.”

Liam added: “In the coming months and years our customers will see further improvements as we continue work to modernise our stations and facilities.

“We will also keep improving our current fleet of trains and, from next year, will begin the introduction of 243 new, purpose built carriages. These trains will enable us to run a further 2,000 services every week, building on the 2,500 we already operate each day.

“This is just the beginning of modernisation for our customers and there are many more exciting improvements to come on our journey to 2020.

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