A major £9.8 million upgrade to the rail route between Knaresborough and Poppleton has now been completed.
The upgrade, which has been carried out by Network Rail and funded by North Yorkshire County Council and the York & North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership supported by Government funding from the Local Growth Fund, will improve services for passengers for years to come.
It has seen the signalling system modernised and the process of token signalling removed, as well as changes to the track layout at Cattal railway station, which will allow two trains to enter the station at the same time. Work has also taken place to install new safety measures at some level crossings on the route and this work is vital to maintain safety once more trains begin running.
The completion of the project will not only create a more modern, reliable and resilient railway for passengers, but will also enable more services to run in the future, improving connections between Harrogate and York, as well as stations along the route.
Luke Espin, sponsor for Network Rail, commented: “This project will enable more services to run in the future and is key to improving transport links for passengers, and we’re really happy that this work is now complete.
“To allow this work to take place safely, there were some changes to train services, as well as short term road closures, and we’d like to thank all those who were impacted for their patience.
“It’s been great to work with both North Yorkshire County Council and the York & North Yorkshire Local Enterprise Partnership on this project and we look forward to passengers reaping the benefits.”
Rail Minister Chris Heaton-Harris added: “The completion of these vital upgrades at Cattal and along the Harrogate-York line is fantastic news for passengers across North Yorkshire, creating a more modern, reliable and resilient railway for years to come.
“By enabling improved connections between Harrogate and York, as well as stations along the route, it will help this region build back better, boosting the local economy and supporting tourism.”