Blackpool electrification work reveals Poulton semaphores

RECENT vegetation clearance work at Poulton-le-Fylde on the Preston to Blackpool North route has uncovered the mothballed Fleetwood branch and surviving semaphore signals protecting the junction.

Network Rail is currently preparing the Lancashire branch for resignalling and electrification and is simplifying the track layouts at Poulton and Salwick during weekend closures.

Work has just commenced in cutting back the vegetation growth around the area of Poulton No.3 signalbox at Poulton-le-Fylde Junction, the former line to Fleetwood, the next phase in the electrification work being carried out between Preston and Blackpool North. On Tuesday 7th February 2017 contractors are busy shredding vegetation from the cutting on the former Fleetwood line as Northern 156 440 passes forming the 1N62 12:29 Manchester Airport to Blackpool North service. The line to Fleetwood was closed to passengers in 1970 and to freight services in 1999.

Northern DMU No. 156440 and a sister unit pass the junction on February 8 with a train for Blackpool North.

Electric trains are expected to start operation on this line from May 2018. GORDON EDGAR

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