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Saturday 31 July until Sunday 15 August 2021

For 16 days, from Saturday 31 July until Sunday 15 August 2021, the railway line will be closed between Manchester Victoria and Rochdale / Stalybridge so that Network Rail can under major engineering work as part of Transpennine Route Upgrade

The work will cause major changes and disruption to Northern services between Manchester and Leeds via Rochdale and the Calder Valley and between Manchester, Ashton-under-Lyne and Stalybridge. TransPennine Express services between Leeds, Huddersfield, Manchester, Manchester Airport and Liverpool will also be affected.

Below is a summary of how services are affected, and how your journey will change.

For the most up to date information, please check your journey as close to your travel date as possible using the Journey Planner and view more details at about the Transpennine Route Upgrade at 




Leeds to Manchester Victoria via Bradford Interchange

Trains will largely only run between Leeds and Rochdale, but some services will continue to and from Moston, serving Castleton, Mills Hill and Moston.

Customers making through journeys to and from Manchester must change at Rochdale and use the fast rail replacement bus service between Rochdale and Manchester Victoria. Please do not travel to or from Moston.

A limited rail replacement bus service will also run between Castleton, Mills Hill, Moston and Manchester Victoria to compliment the train service.


Manchester Victoria to Chester via Warrington Bank Quay

There will be no Northern service between Manchester Victoria and Chester via Warrington Bank Quay. Customers will need to use one of the following alterative services:

  • Transport for Wales’s Manchester Piccadilly to Chester via Warrington bank Quay service
  • Northern’s Manchester Piccadilly to Chester via Northwich service.


Leeds to Manchester Victoria and Wigan via Dewsbury Brighouse

Trains on this route will run as two separate train services:

  • Leeds to Hebden Bridge (runs Mondays to Saturdays only)
  • Manchester Victoria and Wigan stations (runs daily).

Customers making through or cross-Manchester journeys on this service will need to make the following changes:

  • Hebden Bridge - for trains to/from Rochdale or Leeds
  • Rochdale - for the rail replacement bus service to and Manchester Victoria
  • Manchester Victoria - for trains to/from Wigan stations.


 Blackburn to Kirkby via Todmorden and Rochdale

Trains on this route will run as two separate train services:

  • Blackburn to Rochdale (reduced two-hourly service Monday to Saturday)
  • Manchester Victoria to Kirkby - (runs hourly Monday to Saturday)

At all times customers must change at Rochdale and use the fast rail replacement bus service between Rochdale and Manchester Victoria.


Rochdale to Manchester Victoria, Bolton and Clitheroe

Trains on this route will run between Manchester Victoria, Bolton, Blackburn and Clitheroe.


At all times customers travelling between Rochdale and Manchester and use the fast rail replacement bus service between Rochdale and Manchester Victoria;


Stalybridge to Manchester and Southport

Trains on this route will run between Manchester Victoria, Bolton, Wigan Wallgate and Southport.

Rail replacement buses will run on:

  • Mondays to Saturdays - Stalybridge, Ashton-under-Lyne and Guide Bridge where connections can be made with train services to and from Manchester Piccadilly.
  • Sundays – Manchester Victoria, Ashton-under-Lyne and Stalybridge.


Travelling between Manchester and Ashton?

If you are travelling between Manchester and Ashton, you can also travel by Metrolink. You will need to pay a separate fare unless you hold a systemone travelcard which includes tram travel.


Manchester Victoria to Liverpool Lime Street

The peak-time Northern services that run between Manchester Victoria and Liverpool Lime Street will continue to run during the works.




There will also be significant changes to TransPennine Express’s services which include:

  • No service at Manchester Victoria or between Manchester Victoria and Manchester Piccadilly / Manchester Airport
  • All trains services are diverted to run and from Manchester Piccadilly via the Guide Bridge route
  • Customers travelling between the North East, West Yorkshire and Manchester Airport or Liverpool Lime Street will need to change trains at Manchester Piccadilly at all times.


Liverpool Lime Street to Newcastle

This service will operate as two separate services:

  • Manchester Piccadilly to Leeds, York and Newcastle (daily)
  • Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport calling at Lea Green, Newton-le-Willows, Manchester Oxford Road and Manchester Piccadilly (Monday to Saturday only).


Travelling between Manchester and Liverpool

If you are travelling between Manchester and Liverpool, please use only the Liverpool Lime Street to Manchester Airport or Northern’s Liverpool to Crewe via Earlestown or Liverpool to Manchester Oxford Road/Manchester Airport via Warrington Central services.


Manchester Airport to Middlesbrough and Redcar Central

  • Trains will run between Manchester Piccadilly and Middlesbrough and Redcar Central
  • At peak-times, trains will call additionally at Greenfield and Mossley stations.


Manchester Piccadilly to Hull and Manchester Piccadilly to Huddersfield

  • The Manchester Piccadilly to Huddersfield stopping train service will not run
  • The Manchester Piccadilly to Hull train service will call additionally at Greenfield and Mossley stations


Huddersfield to Leeds stopping service

  • Huddersfield to Leeds


Liverpool Lime Street to Scarborough

  • This service will continue to run between York and Scarborough



There will be significant disruption and changes to the Metrolink services as the works effect Collyhurst Tunnel, where Metrolink passes under the Rochdale/Ashton routes. At the same time, the opportunity is being undertaken to do enhanced works on the City Centre route via Market Street.

More information on the changes to Metrolink services can be found on the Transport for Great Manchester (TfGM) website



To help you get around we have agreed the following changes to tickets over the 16-days

  • Transport for Wales – will accept tickets on their services between Chester and Manchester Piccadilly via Warrington Bank Quay
  • Route VIA HEBDENBRIDGE tickets – tickets issued between New Pudsey and Brighouse, will be valid on TransPennine Express services via Huddersfield to and from Manchester Piccadilly at no extra cost. Customers at stations West of Halifax will need to travel via Rochdale at all times
  • Penalty Fares – penalty fares on both Northern and TransPennine Express services will continue to be in operation during the works
  • Additional compensation – as we have put in there will be no additional compensation during these works, other than the ‘Delay 15’ schemes.


Please note that unless your ticket includes travel Metrolink, i.e. those tickets with Manchester CTZ printed on them; there is no ticket acceptance on the Metrolink system during these works and use of the tram network will required an extra fare payable.


Rail Replacement

Rail replacement bus stop locations can be found on both the Useful Information Posters and, where installed, on dedicated green rail replacement posters at stations.

Please note rail replacement buses are unable to carry:

  • Heavy luggage
  • Non-folding bicycles, prams or scooters
  • Animals (other than registered assistance dogs).

 We will be running fully accessible buses during these works provided by Blackpool Transport. Blackpool Transport’s buses not only feature a sleek exterior, but they also host a variety of added benefits including seats that are trimmed with E-leather and a wood effect flooring. Free WiFi and mobile charging points for customers. Please note that hot foot and drinks, alcoholic drinks cannot be consumed on these bus services.

 You can also visit the Help section for our current availability on accessible buses for planned engineering works.


Passenger Assist

Our Passenger Assist service is available from all affected stations for customers requiring mobility assistance. Where possible, we recommend booking assistance in advance by calling 0800 138 5560 (Text Relay 18001 0800 138 5560), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week or online. You can also book your travel assistance via the Passenger Assistance app


Travelling with us

Please check the latest travel restrictions before undertaking your journey.

Please continue to wear a face covering on our trains and at stations. Thank you for being considerate of other customers and our colleagues.

If you are showing any Coronavirus symptoms, however mild, you should self-isolate along with other members of your household. Check the latest Public Health England advice about coronavirus (COVID-19).


We will continue to do all we can and hope you will also continue to play your part when travelling on Northern services.