Helping the Brighouse Line

As HADRAG has been pointing out with mind-numbing regularity since Brighouse station opened fifteen years ago, potentially fastest existing route from Brighouse, Sowerby Bridge and upper Calderdale to Leeds actually uses part of the Huddersfield Line through Mirfield and Dewsbury. A fast train from Brighouse to Leeds via Dewsbury would take about 20 minutes; it would be 30 min from Sowerby Bridge and at most 40 minutes from Hebden Bridge – bettering present times either via Bradford or on the Dewsbury stopper. There is also an obvious need for a better service from upper Calderdale via Brighouse to Huddersfield. But the invitation to tender for the new Northern Rail franchise prohibits more trains Brighouse-Huddersfield round the “Bradley curve”. Bradley Jn is where our trains routinely stand at the signal waiting for a path into Huddersfield. Similar junction conflicts occur at Heaton Lodge Jn, Mirfield where CV Brighouse services have to give way to TransPennine Expresses in both directions. Mirfield-Huddersfield used to be a 4-track railway and could be again without major difficulty – given the will and the funding. With four tracks, parallel movements would be possible. A train from the Calder Valley would be able to run into Mirfield or Huddersfield alongside a TPE service instead of having to wait

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