A ‘GHOST train’ will pick up passengers at Helsby and Frodsham stations on July 21 for a rare rail trip to boost an ongoing campaign to reinstate the Halton Curve and regular return passenger services to Liverpool.
For the third year running, Northern Rail have agreed to extend Parliamentary Train from Chester to Runcorn Main Line Station – a token one-way early morning summer Saturday service which usually runs empty – to Liverpool South Parkway.
It will leave Chester Station at 7.50am, stopping at Helsby at 8.02am and Frodsham at 8.07am.
North Cheshire Rail Users Group have organised the event, including return journeys on vintage buses – and members hope local people will turn out in force to board the train in support of the campaign.
The Halton Curve was closed to regular passenger services in the 1970s and this short stretch of line has effectively been abandoned, the token Parliamentary Train running only to avoid the cost and inconvenience of a statutory closure process.
NCRUG secretary Cedric Green said: “This is a rare opportunity to experience a trip along the Halton Curve but, more importantly, to highlight the advantages for people living and working in the area to easily access Liverpool John Lennon Airport and Liverpool city centre if a regular two-way service along the line was reinstated.”
On the same day, the rail users group will also celebrate the completion of the £400,000 restoration of Frodsham Station House, and they have arranged with Network Rail for the historic building to be open for members of the public to have a look around from 10.30am to 12.30pm.