Innovation and Networks Executive Agency

British priority rail project receives EU funding

Creation date: October 16, 2013

The European Union will co-finance with a combined total amount of over €43 million from the TEN-T Programme two projects to improve rail infrastructure on different sections of the "Railway/road axis Ireland/United Kingdom/continental Europe" (TEN-T Priority Project 26). They will ultimately lead to the improvement of rail traffic flows and multimodality in the region.


The first project, which was selected for funding under the 2012 TEN-T Multi-Annual Call and will receive over €12 million in support, involves important rail infrastructure works in Ipswich, a key node within Priority Project 26. The new Ipswich chord will allow rail freight services to travel directly between the TEN-T Port of Felixstowe and key hub cities such as Birmingham and Manchester without having to reconfigure convoys by moving the locomotive to the opposite end. Once completed the project will remove a significant performance and capacity bottleneck and allow faster, safer, and more direct traffic flows between the key TEN-T ports in the UK and along the Priority Project.


The second project, which was also selected for funding under the 2012 TEN-T Multi-Annual Call and will benefit from EU support to the tune of over €31 million, supports the electrification to 25,000 Volts of two rail sections from Manchester towards Liverpool to the west and Stalybridge to the east, all on Priority Project 26. Realisation of the project will provide a fully electrified interchange with the  West Coast Main Line (Priority Project 14) at Manchester, linking with traffic from across the UK, including the nearby TEN-T Port of Liverpool and the associated rail freight flow.


The projects are both to be concluded by December 2014 and 2015 respectively.