Between the Lines

Chris Stokes

The Ordsall Chord opened at the start of the December timetable, albeit with a token two-hourly extension of some Leeds – Bradford – Manchester Victoria trains round the corner as far as Oxford Road. I was in Manchester just before Christmas, and took the opportunity to travel on the new chord. There were very few passengers, as it is early days and it isn’t yet a credible service. The main impression I was left with was the potential scale of the operational challenge for the full service. We had significant signal checks on the chord in both directions, and the junctions at each end are part of a ‘Bermuda Triangle’ of flat junctions – there are no fewer than eight in the area bounded by Windsor Bridge Junction (just north of Salford Crescent), Deansgate and Manchester Victoria, little more than a mile and a half across.

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