Rail maintenance depot to create up to 100 skilled jobs

The Government says high-skilled jobs and more reliable rail journeys will be created near Bradford.

Rail Minister Huw Merriman has confirmed these plans to build a new maintenance facility in Shipley, as part of the Government’s most recent £3.9bn investment into the Transpennine route upgrade (TRU).

Around £100m will be provided to deliver what will be known as the Shipley TrainCare Centre, which will provide extra resilience to the North of England’s rail network. As many as 100 skilled jobs will be supported at the site, as well as apprenticeships.

It comes as work on the TRU project continues to create quicker journey times between Manchester, Huddersfield, Leeds and York. A total of £6.9bn has been committed to the programme to date.

Merriman, said: “This demonstrates our plan to invest in infrastructure and support the region’s huge potential for growth.

“The investment will create new jobs and more reliable services as we accelerate our multi-billion pound Transpennine route upgrade to transform rail journeys for generations to come.”

With construction set to begin this year, the new maintenance facility will be home to Northern’s electric fleet of trains operating across West Yorkshire, bringing essential maintenance works closer to the centre of the north Transpennine route, leading to increased reliability.

Neil Holm, managing director of TRU, said: “We’re pleased to reveal our plans for this major investment in Shipley, demonstrating the Transpennine route upgrade’s commitment to supporting local communities and creating local jobs.

“This new depot will support rail services while we carry out essential improvements and will also leave long-lasting legacy benefits for the town going forward.”

Rob Warnes, strategic development director for Northern, said: “As the future home for most of our electric train fleets for West Yorkshire, the new site will bring a wealth of highly-skilled jobs into the region, as well as providing resilience for our network across the North.

“It will play a key part in helping us to deliver our plans for the Transpennine route upgrade and beyond.”

Councillor Susan Hinchcliffe, leader of Bradford Council, added: “We welcome this major investment in Shipley, which is another vote of confidence in the district from industry and further positions Bradford as a great place to do business.

“The new depot will be an important part of operating rail in the north of England, increasing service reliability for rail service users.

“A new state-of-the-art facility such as this is one of the many tangible improvements to the rail network we are supporting, delivering greener, more accessible trains across the north.

Increasing employment opportunities and developing skills through regeneration are key priorities for the council, so it’s great to hear that local jobs will be created to facilitate this project in the immediate term, as well as 92 permanent skilled posts being created in the longer-term.”