Roads reopen as railway bridge work is completed

Work on Harpers Lane, Chorley, earlier this week
Work on Harpers Lane, Chorley, earlier this week

Two railway bridges reopen today after being closed to traffic for months.

Vehicles can use Harpers Lane, in Chorley, and Railway Road, in Adlington, after the bridges were rebuilt by Network Rail as part of the electrification of the railway.

Harpers Lane was scheduled to open today, while Railway Road has reopened two weeks early.

Traders have been counting down to today, with businesses at the bottom of Harpers Lane saying they have suffered badly because of the closure.

The bridges were rebuilt to provide the additional height required to allow overhead electricity lines to run underneath to power trains from December 2016.

Network Rail says the upgrade of the line and electric trains will improve connections between Manchester and Preston via Bolton, delivering a more reliable, efficient and greener railway.

Ian Joslin, area director for Network Rail, said: “Our programme of work to electrify the railway in the North West and upgrade the infrastructure as part of the northern hub will provide many benefits to passengers, including faster journeys where possible and more seats and capacity.

“Everything is done to complete projects on time and we understand the impact our work has. On this occasion we have been able to reopen the bridge in Adlington early, which will provide an early boost to the surrounding area and is a notable achievement for the team delivering the upgrades.”