I attended a meeting this evening with Greater Manchester ITA and other Greater Manchester MPs to get an update on when we will see “new” rolling stock in Greater Manchester. I say “new”, but in fact it won’t be new at all – we’ll be receiving refurbished rolling stock from Thameslink. Northern Rail should have been receiving 182 extra carriages, but this figure has gone down, and the decision to electrify the Manchester to Liverpool line means that the demand for more diesel carriages is much-reduced. Nevertheless we are now likely to only see between 80-100 carriages in phase 1, with no guarantee of any more, and even these carriages are dependent on there being no delays with the cascading of carriages from Thameslink.
There has been enormous growth in rail travel in Greater Manchester over the last 10 years, and in fact the highest growth has been on the Styal line through the constituency with 94% growth between 1998-2008, with a whopping 258% growth at Mauldeth Rd station.