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Thursday, 16 January 2014

New Year Greetings from Re-open the Woodhead Line - The Campaign in 2014

                              THE WOODHEAD CAMPAIGN IN 2014


 First,  a happy New Year to everyone. 

HS2 has changed the entire scene, but it has not changed our objectives. We are still determined:-

. to restore a fast rail link between Manchester and Sheffield, both for passengers and freight
. to oppose any further motorway construction over the Dark Peak

The basic objective of ‘HS2’, even in its present unsatisfactory form, is the right one – to add strategic rail capacity. What we need to do is to use the better things in the proposal to serve our specific objectives for a Trans-Pennine link.  The Northern Hub, while admirable in its way for easing rail traffic around Manchester, is not a strategic proposal of the kind we need.  For our purpose we need to:-
·          get people with clout on to our side before the ‘HS2’ proposals are implemented in the wrong form

·          get the message across that as the HS2 proposals stand the approach to Manchester from the south is the wrong thing.  A Manchester Labour MP pointed out just recently that to approach Manchester from the east via Woodhead not only makes more sense but serves the national interest by enabling an east-west rail freight link.
As a specific issue there is the question of where the electric cables should go. We want to ensure that these are not laid along the existing track bed, when there is a feasible and better route along the old construction rail track on the other side of the reservoirs.
For 2014 we would like to canvas ideas from the entire Woodhead group membership on how best to go about all this. Colin Elliff has done an immense amount of work on high speed rail in the UK as a professional civil engineer, which is available to us, and hopefully we will show the determination to make the best use of it. 

Finally, apologies for and acknowledgement of stealing the above photo, which is excellent, from the following website:-

Hopefully they won't mind, if in return you use the above link to visit their website, where incidentally you can view many other great pictures. Woodhead is however one station we would love to be able to remove from the disused stations website but for all the right reasons.


David Bryson/Steve Bagshaw

Chair/ Vice-chair Reopen the Woodhead Line