Delay to Station Bridge

Update on Goostrey station bridge from the Parish Council:

Cheshire East Highways have informed us that the scheme to install a safe area for pedestrians to cross the Station Bridge and traffic lights is on hold.  We received the following explanation directly from Cheshire East Highways last week.

“The scheme was programmed in to commence on site in March 2019, however after meeting with the Contractors on site to discuss the buildability aspects of the scheme, it became apparent that it would not be possible to implement the scheme as per the original design.  This is mainly down to the complexities of the site in terms of the highway boundary extents.

Goostrey station

Station bridge

We have therefore had no option but to place the scheme on hold while we investigate other options in order to ensure that we design and deliver a workable solution that is safe for all road users.

I appreciate this is not the news you wanted to hear, however I can assure you that we are working hard to explore other options to enable the scheme to be constructed”. Highways

 

We are extremely disappointed in this new delay, however we are in regular contact with Cheshire East Highways to establish when a “buildable” scheme can be implemented.’  Goostrey Parish Council. 

Traffic Lights scheduled at the rail bridge

Cheshire East are to install traffic lights on the railway station bridge in the new year.

****(January 2019 update: plans currently on hold “mainly down to the complexities of the site in terms of the highway boundary extents”.)

It is anticipated that Station Road will be closed from 4th February to 3rd March 2019 (the dates are only provisional at the moment).

Residents seem to be split in their views on the lights; some strongly in favour, due to safety reasons, and others less so. Will it complicate things at the entrance to the Station and nearby resident’s driveways?  One resident said “I worry it will actually cause drivers entering the village to speed if they’ve been held up on red, especially as many seem to think they don’t need to slow until near the Red Lion, maybe another 30 sign could be put up on the village side of the Station”.  (Highways state that additional signage is not necessary as the presence of street lights indicate a speed limit of 30mph.)

The Parish Council’s preferred solution was a footbridge, but I believe this was ruled out by CEC/Railtrack due to insufficient space on the platform and issues with the overhead wires.

CEC/Railtrack decided that, as their risk assessment showed there is also a danger of cars leaving the road and going down onto the rail track, a traffic light scheme is needed – as well as a footway to address the safety of people crossing the bridge to the southbound track on foot.

Station lights

Station bridge closure

 

Displays at the Station

It’s worth a trip to the station just to see the lovely Remembrance display by Goostrey School…see photos below.

…and now there is an electronic display of train times too (don’t mention Saturdays); fortunately the chap who’d fitted it was still there when the photographs were taken  – as it was reading a fault immediately after he’d packed up!

The lovely old Station Building was being closely inspected today; presumably work to restore the exterior is imminent following the £40,000 grant to Network Rail from the Heritage Railway Trust….great news!  The station opened on 1st Sept 1891, initially with buildings on both side.  The remaining Victorian modular railway building is of a type built between 1860 and 1920 and only a handful remain according to The London Midland Railway Society.

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Current train times

A reminder of train times; to avoid “a heart-attack inducing dash for a train” such as one resident recently had to endure!
Worth checking times before you travel as the drivers are working to rule due to their dispute with RMT; along with the problem of there not being enough drivers to service the new timetable.

Apparently the situation could last for months!

Most trains to Manchester from Goostrey leave at 3 minutes past the hour
Goostrey to Manchester:
0600, 0703, 0729, 0803 (exc. Saturdays), then hourly to 2103, 2204, 2327.
Sundays Goostrey to Manchester:
0910, 1010, 1108, 1212, 1311, 1510 then hourly to 2010, 2109, 2209, 2310.
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Goostrey to Crewe: Monday-Friday
0606,0642,0744,0843,0940,1041,1141,1241,1341,1440,1540,1641,1742,1841,1941,2044,2141,2238,0015.
Saturdays Goostrey to Crewe:
0606,0638,0744,0841,0940,1041,1141,1242,1341,1440,1540,1641,1742,1841,1941,2041,2142,2238,2343.
Sundays Goostrey to Crewe:
0931,1031,1233,1340, 1440, 1540, 1640, 1742, 1842,1940,2041,2145,2247
Most Goostrey-bound trains now depart from Manchester at one minute past the hour.
Link to full time-table:  Train Times

Goostrey FoGS win award

Goostrey FoGS win award

Congratulations to all involved in Friends of Goostrey Station (FoGS) for winning The Diversity Award; the award for involving people with different cultures, abilities and backgrounds.

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Frodsham was the overall winner.  Cheshire is unique in that it is the only county to have a Best Kept Stations award.  Their aims are :

To promote, publicise and encourage community involvement to improve railway stations by holding an annual competition, and by other means, to find the Best Kept Station in Cheshire and other examples of good practice
To hold an annual event to support this aim by recognising and publicising such activities by giving Awards and to promote these stations and the railway industry in Cheshire.
To encourage community involvement and recognition of the significance of their railway stations, particularly by young persons, through conservation, environmental projects and associated education, artworks, at the stations and their environs.
To work in partnership with the railway industry, Local Authorities, Parish and Town Councils and other relevant stakeholders to achieve these aims.

Well done Goostrey…..and don’t forget FoGS are always looking for more volunteers.  Working party mornings are on second Sundays.

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MP supports FOGS but Northern slow to deliver improvements

Friends of Goostrey Station (FOGS) by Chris Burgess

Fiona Bruce MP sent FOGS this message of support after reading the newspaper article about plans to add CCTV and a customer information system (CIS) to Goostrey station.

“Friends of Goostrey station do absolutely sterling work in maintaining Goostrey Station and making it attractive for the many passengers using this line. It is, therefore, excellent news that Northern are also investing in the station and making vital infrastructure improvements. There is, of course, much more that could be done and I know that with the FOGS on the case the station is in the best hands!”

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However, by the end of 2017, the promised improvements by Northern had not materialised.

In the New Year, members of FOGS were extremely frustrated to read the following from Vicky Cropper, Regional Community and Sustainability Manager for Central Region.

“Regarding the installation of the CCTV and CIS, it looks as if this has been pushed back a number of weeks and is expected to be completed in March due to Landlord Consent.
The cross track cabling design for the new equipment needs Landlord Consent from Network Rail; this document will be submitted this week and NWR have 21 days to review it. Also the CIS screens are a bespoke model which have a long lead in time and won’t be delivered until March 2018.”

As Mike Jarvis, chair of FOGS, commented “We look forward to more news on the matter and hope that 2018 improves as the year goes on.”

Despite such disappointments, volunteers still come forward to help at our working parties between 10 and 1 on the second Sunday of each month. Platforms, steps and car park are swept and planted areas, including tubs, are maintained. Our latest recruits are young people who are using the experience to qualify for Duke of Edinburgh awards.

Goostrey Community Primary School continue to produce art for the platform shelter which is much appreciated by passengers. The current work about Water produced many comments including these:- ‘Every time I visit this station I enjoy the displays from the school.’ And ‘Another fabulous display! What beautiful handwriting and talented artists.’

Members of FOGS also help in other ways including keeping the pressure on Northern to restore the old Ticket Office.  The Rail Authority have agreed to repair the outside of the building but work on the inside will need to be organised by local people.

If you would like information about this group of volunteers, please speak to Mike Jarvis on 533981 or Peter Godfrey on 533745. In addition, there is a recently updated website at http://goostreystation.org.uk which includes information about rail tickets.