If like me you were caught up in the disruption on the airport line this morning caused by cable theft, then you probably had to catch a bus into town. I arrived at my office relatively unscathed, barely fifteen minutes later than usual, having caught the number 50 to Oxford Road and catching an onward train connection from there. There was one ray of light amidst the clouds however: Styal station received an hourly service once again – well, for the morning at least.
A pretty little village just over the Greater Manchester border in Cheshire, the village is home to both Quarry Bank Mill and HM Prison Styal for young offenders and women. Despite this, the station is served by a mere three trains a day in each direction on Mondays to Saturdays – and that’s only due to hard work campaigning to get more trains to call at Styal station. There is now a two-hourly service on Sundays, again thanks to campaigners, but the Monday to Saturday timetable looks like this:
Data from Northern Rail timetable, May 2010
Given the disruption this morning however, Northern Rail were operating an hourly shuttle service between Alderley Edge and Manchester Airport calling at Wilmslow and – yes, Styal. Here’s a screenshot from National Rail Enquiries:
Let’s hope this offers a glimpse into the near future when all trains between Manchester Airport and Wilmslow once again call at Styal.