Future engineering work

PAGE LAST UPDATED: 22/02/2019 22:44. Update now

See details of routes affected by planned engineering works, including when they take effect, maps of the affected area, alternative timetables, advice for alternative travel and real-time updates.

EVERY WEEKEND buses replace Northern trains between Manchester and Preston / Wigan Wallgate via Salford Crescent until Sunday 4 November

Start date
17/02/2018  00:00
End date
Route affected
Download map of route afected

Northern routes via Salford Crescent between: Manchester Piccadilly and Bolton; Manchester Piccadilly, Wigan Wallgate and Southport; Manchester Piccadilly and Preston via Bolton; Manchester Victoria and Blackburn via Bolton

TOC(s) affected

Major engineering work is taking place in the Salford Crescent area as part of the Great North Rail Project, closing all lines every weekend until Sunday 4 November 2018.

To allow engineers to access the railway, the routes between Manchester and Wigan Wallgate (via Salford Crescent and Atherton) and Manchester and Preston (via Salford Crescent and Bolton) will be closed every weekend with trains replaced by road transport.

Direct trains between Preston and Manchester will continue to operate via an alternative route.

Buses will run between:

  • Manchester Piccadilly / Manchester Victoria and Wigan Wallgate via Bolton / Atherton
  • Manchester Piccadilly / Manchester Victoria and Preston via Bolton
  • Manchester Victoria and Blackburn via Bolton

Please note, on Saturdays, a significantly reduced Northern service running due to industrial action.

Network Rail are currently working to finalise full details at which time amended timetables will be made available. We are very sorry for the short notice changes to timetables on these routes.

Check before you travel:

You can check your journey using the National Rail Enquiries Journey Planner

You can find the location of your bus replacement by checking station signs or by searching for your station on our station information pages


Non folding bicycles are not allowed on rail replacement bus services at any time. Folding bicycles are allowed if fully folded. For more information, please see here.

Project Information:

Continuing every weekend for the foreseeable future, Network Rail engineers will be working to complete the upgrade of the 25-mile stretch of track between Manchester and Preston via Salford Crescent to support the introduction of better trains.

The project was due to complete back in December 2017, but old mine workings, running sand and varying layers of rock have significantly hampered the installation of hundreds of steel columns needed to carry the power cables for the introduction of electric trains. New engineering solutions have been required to resolve the problems which has included using steel cylinders and filling them with concrete to deal with poor ground conditions.