Network Rail has emerged victorious from a legal battle with a Manchester engineer attempting to shut down the Ordsall Chord.
A last-ditch attempt to stop the development of an £85m link between Manchester’s three main railway stations was yesterday dismissed in the London Court of Appeal, giving rail bosses the final green light.
Work to build the link, which will connect Picadilly, Victoria and Oxford Road stations, began in October 2015, after a judge threw out claims from a former consultant on the project that the planning application process was flawed.
Mark Whitby claimed there was an alternative route which would do less damage to Manchester’s rail heritage.
Mr Whitby won the right to appeal the judges decision, bringing the case before the court again in January.
On March 23, however, Judge Simon dismissed all three appeals; two statutory challenges of the Transport and Works Act order of Listed Building Consent and a judicial review of the planning permission.
The Court of Appeal will hand down its judgement early in the new term, after Easter.
In a statement Network Rail said it “welcomed the decision”
“The Ordsall Chord is part of a vast programme of improvements across the north of England included in Network Rail’s Railway Upgrade Plan,” it said.
The Ordsall Chord will allow for two new hourly fast trains between Victoria and Liverpool, six fast trains an hour to Leeds, a new direct service from Manchester to the airport and faster journeys to Hull, Newcastle and the North East.