More East Manchester Line Metrolink tests

As the opening date of the East Manchester Line continues to approach – public services are due to start on Monday 11th February with special services in operation from Friday 8th February for local residents (who will be sent special invitations by Manchester City Council and Tameside Council) – further tests are due to take place on Sunday 3rd February in connection with another Manchester City home match. As on previous occasions when they have tested the line under match day conditions passengers will not be carried and there will be some road closures both before and after the match.

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7 Responses to More East Manchester Line Metrolink tests

  1. Ralph Oakes-Garnett says:

    Testing took place as advertised to what appeared to be a 12 minute frequency. No problems observed all seemed well.

  2. freel07 says:

    I think they also ran a service of football extras up to Velopark as double units. Where they ran to and from in the City I don’t know but I’d guess Victoria would be most likely.

  3. Ken Walker says:

    Full “shadow” running in operation today (Wednesday 6th), with the trams seemingly running through to and from Bury, although obviously not carrying passengers between Piccadilly and Droylsden. There were also some trams turning back on the crossover outside the Asda store near the Velopark stop. Many of the drivers were friendly and giving a wave and a smile when they saw the camera pointing at them.

    • freel07 says:

      Ken, the services involved are Bury to Droylsden as you say along with Altrincham to Piccadilly (Sheffield Street), Eccles to Piccadilly (Sheffield Street) and MediaCityUK to Velopark (Piccadilly to Velopark out of service). Of course the Shaw to St Werburghs Road and Altrincham Bury Directs are still running as previously.

      • Ken walker says:

        Will the MediaCityUK trams be running empty to Velopark when the Droylsden service starts, to ease congestion at Sheffield Street, or is this just part of the familiarisation exercise prior to the service starting?

        • Ken walker says:

          Another thing that has just occurred to me. Presumably the siding at Sheffield Street has been brought in because the turn back sidings that were previously in use at Piccadilly now form part of the main line. As this new turnback facility is technically on the new line, does this mean that T68s and T68As will no longer be able to operate into Piccadilly station? Obviously they are now banned from Bury to Piccadilly station services as they now go through to Droylsden. If they are barred from Piccadilly then obviously the Bury to Altrincham direct services will be the only diagrams available for them.

          • freel07 says:

            I understand that the MCUK to Velopark trams will run out of service from Piccadilly to Velopark and back as you say to ease congestion at Sheffield Street which was designed to turn 2 trams every 12 minutes.

            It’s true to say that the only duties for the remaining T68s are the Bury to Altrincham Direct doubles now. That’s until coupled M5000s can be used on those duties when Mosley Street closes. There are only 14 left and there should be 7 doubles so its a close call. The T68As have rarely been seen since the East Manchester Line shadow running started. There is a rumour they will be the next to go. As for them being banned from Piccadilly there is no news of that. It would only be New Islington siding (Sheffield Street) as thats the only new construction needed for Eccles and Altrincham services. I don’t think they are banned from anywhere other than the Oldham Rochdale Line. They simply prefer not to use them on the new track to try to prevent excessive wear. Thats not likely to be a problem at Sheffield Street.

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