On track for more Sunday rail services

A Northern train
A Northern train

Sunday services on the borough’s railways are being increased to ensure train passengers are kept moving seven days a week.

Rail operator Northern is upgrading the timetable to ensure there will be trains running every half an hour from Wigan to both Manchester and Liverpool.

The changes, which will double the number of trains currently on the line on Sundays between the two cities and the borough, will be introduced on December 10.

Trains will travel every 30 minutes from Wigan North Western through Merseyside to Liverpool and from Wallgate along the Atherton line to Manchester Victoria.

Liam Sumpter, regional director at Northern, said: “The timetable enhancements announced mark an important step forward for our customers. They are part of a wide-ranging modernisation programme that will see us add more than 2,000 extra services each week by 2020.

“The half-hourly services will offer new weekend commuting possibilities, and will also boost travel options for leisure travellers.

“In the coming months and years our customers will see further improvements as we work to modernise our stations and facilities.”

The timetable alterations are part of Northern’s ambitious project to overhaul rail services in the area between now and 2020.

The company wants all the old Pacer trains off the region’s routes by that date as well as improve stations and increase ticket-buying options.

Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) head of rail, Amanda White, said: “We work to provide travel options that support the region’s economic growth and sustainability, so timetable enhancements such as these that improve connectivity and provide more opportunities for passengers are a major boost.

“We will continue to work with industry partners such as Northern to provide the best possible future rail network for Greater Manchester."