Massive work on railway bridges in Huddersfield will be carried out as part of the multi-billion TransPennine Route Upgrade (TRU).

Details of the upcoming TRU work and its scale and complexity were revealed by Network Rail’s Paul Sumner to a meeting of Huddersfield Civic Society.

Works on the railway viaduct over Bradford Road took place over Easter and Mr Sumner said that was just the start.

“Work is scheduled to rebuild or replace the listed railway bridge over John William Street in Huddersfield town centre, strengthen the historic railway viaduct across Huddersfield ring road and to build new bridges over the railway on Leeds Road at Colnebridge and through Mirfield and Ravensthorpe,” he said.

“The model is to construct a new, temporary bridge alongside an existing bridge, then demolish the current bridge before building a new one in its place with local rail and road closures concentrated on just the specific weekends when a road deck itself is removed or lifted into place.”

The multi-year project is transforming the rail line between York and Manchester with the largest works on the route now underway between Huddersfield and Dewsbury. Two additional fast tracks are being built alongside the current two-track railway.

Every station, bridge and structure is being re-engineered or rebuilt to accommodate more and longer passenger and goods trains able to travel at higher speeds than they do now. Extensive works are currently underway at Mirfield and Ravensthorpe.

Mr Sumner said: “Splitting routes into fast and slow tracks in each direction and building new platforms at every station capable of taking eight-coach trains will give capacity to get both freight and passengers off roads and onto rail with huge environmental benefits.”

A large new train maintenance depot is also being built at Hillhouse behind the historic coal drops along Alder Street.

There have been temporary closures of Huddersfield Railway Station and services have been disrupted with rail replacement buses in operation.

Currently there is disruption to services between Huddersfield and Leeds, Monday to Friday, until Friday May 17.

Close to 1,000 staff will soon be working around Huddersfield with a major £80m re-modelling of Huddersfield Station itself, all in keeping with the building’s Grade 1 listing. It is planned to add, realign and extend all platforms eastwards under an extended canopy and with a new eastern footbridge built to supplement the existing foot tunnel.

Mr Sumner said: “During the next few years Huddersfield will gain a superb, enhanced TransPennine rail service with major economic benefits both during construction and then in operation.”

He added that more information will be provided – both online and in stations – on planned service disruptions and mitigations during the construction period.

Written by ANDY HIRST who runs his own Yorkshire freelance journalism agency AH! PR ( specialising in press releases, blogging, website content and copywriting.

New images reveal internal re-design of Huddersfield Railway Station as passengers are warned of Easter disruption