Line News & Events

  • Winter Newsletter

    7th February 2018

    NCRUG have published their latest newsletter for Winter 2018 ....

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  • Halton Curve Upgrade

    2nd February 2018

    The next stage of the Halton Curve upgrade gets underway .....

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  • Cheshire Best Kept Stations

    23rd January 2018

    Frodsham is Cheshire's Best Kept Station 2017 ....

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  • Halton Curve Project

    18th November 2017

    Work is continuing on the Halton Curve Project ....

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  • Waiting for the Workers, Winter 1936

    6th September 2017

    Helsby and Alvanley railway station has been brought back to life by Nick Harling ....

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  • John Hobbs

    7th September 2017

    It is with great sadness that the North Cheshire Rail Users Group must report the death of John Hobbs ....

    Read More

History of the Halton Curve

The History of Halton Curve detailed in "The Birkenhead Railway" by T.B.Maud published by the RCTS.

"The London North Western Railways (LNWR) high level bridge across the Mersey", (otherwise the Queen Ethelfreda Bridge), "  between Runcorn and Widnes was opened on 1st February 1869 and  that company's answer to the inadequacy of the ferry facilities at Birkenhead was the new line from Frodsham Junction to Halton Junction which was authorised by the LNWR (Additional Facilities ) Act 1869 and opened on 1st May 1873. The rail distance between Chester and Liverpool (Lime Street) was considerably shortened and the principle North Wales trains were routed over this line instead of to Birkenhead.

However this line was authorised only after concessions had been made to the GWR who opposed it vigorously, in its original form, because of the loss of the Joint Liverpool traffic.  As compensation for  the high cost of the Runcorn Bridge, the Railway and Canal Commissioners had permitted the LNW to charge for an additional six miles equivalent  to the distance via Warrington and a variation of the same principle  was now applied to the Frodsham - Halton Junction curve. Section 8 of the 1869 Act empowered the Joint to charge a toll on all traffic passing from the Joint line on the LNWR over the curve and at a meeting between the General Managers on the 26th March 1873, the following rates were agreed."

"On passenger and goods traffic carried between Lime Street and other Liverpool stations , including Edge Hill and Frodsham the toll to be as for four miles, Helsby six miles and Dunham seven miles. Passenger and goods traffic between Chester and  stations on the Joint line between  Frodsham and Edge Hill ( excluding the latter but including Widnes) were charged the actual mileage rate."

Main Line trains over Halton Curve!

An interesting document has been created by our Member Bob Florence which details the movements of two trains from Birmingham to Liverpool and return and features the times at various points during the journey.

The locomotive numbers are shown, train times and passing times, enjoy.

Click here to view

Railway Magazine - December 2004

It is interesting to note that in the December 2004 issue of the Railway Magazine the expected cost of reinstatement was estimated at £3m and now, in 2016, it is nearer £20m!

Click here to view the article

Historic Timetables from 1938

Find below reproductions of historic timetables from 1938:

Click here   Chester to Liverpool - via Halton Curve

Click here   Liverpool to Chester - via Halton Curve

Click here   Chester to Manchester (includes many long closed stations)

Click here   Manchester to Chester (includes many long closed stations)

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