£150m rail upgrade between Manchester and Sheffield officially opens

First train at new Dore & Totley platform

A £150m upgrade to a railway link between Manchester and Sheffield will be officially opened today (April 8).

The Hope Valley Railway upgrade began in spring 2021 and has delivered various improvements to the line between the two locations.

Dore & Totley station in Sheffield will have two platforms for the first time since the 1980s. The new platform is linked to the existing platform by a fully accessible footbridge with lifts at both ends. The existing platform at Dore & Totley has also been extended to accommodate six carriage trains.

Other key improvements include signalling improvements along the line to improve reliability and a new overbridge at Hathersage West, replacing the current foot crossing to improve safety.

A one km railway loop has been installed between Bamford and Hathersage, allowing faster services to overtake slower trains relieving an historic bottleneck.

Additional track has also been installed to the South of Dore & Totley station to relieve a longstanding freight train bottleneck.

Work undertaken on the recent closure of the line from March 16-25 saw track installation and drainage works finalised, alongside the final work at Dore & Totley station. Passengers were kept moving through alternative travel plans.

The upgrade has been delivered by the Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU) working with StoryVolker JV.

Rail Minister Huw Merriman said: “Passengers will now benefit from improved reliability and accessibility when travelling between Sheffield and Manchester.”

Neil Holm, Managing Director of TRU said: “The completion of the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade is a great step for train travel in the North.

“After three years of hard work and planning, passengers between Manchester and Sheffield can enjoy a much-improved railway.”

Ben Shaw, sponsor for the Hope Valley Railway Upgrade, said: “The Hope Valley Railway Upgrade team worked tirelessly to deliver these upgrades, that will ensure improved rail services between Manchester and Sheffield.

“I’d like to thank all of our passengers and residents along the route for their patience and support as we carried out these essential upgrades.”