Cheadle’s Lib Dem MP Mark Hunter has thrown his weight behind a campaign for a new Metrolink line for Cheadle and Gatley.
The proposed line would be an orbital route running from Reddish through the Heatons into Stockport and then out through Edgeley, Cheadle Heath, Cheadle, Gatley and Baguley. It would give residents in Cheadle and Gatley local tram stops.
Proposals for new Metrolink lines
Using tram-train technology that allows trams to run on existing heavy rail lines, the route would run along the Stockport-Altrincham-Chester line for much of the distance – reducing the cost by minimising the amount of new track that has to be laid.
Graham Greenhalgh, Lib Dem Council candidate for Cheadle and Gatley, said “It’s fifty years since the people of Cheadle last had their own railway station and the need is greater than ever. With our roads getting busier, a high-quality tram link to Stockport, Manchester and Manchester Airport will make a big difference to local residents.”
Cheadle MP Mark Hunter said “These proposals, backed by Stockport Council and TfGM, are a major step forward and there’s now a real opportunity to have trams running on the new line in a decade or less. We have a solid economic case, but there is still a lot of work to do. We have to show that this has strong community support and a good business case if we’re going to get the funding to get this on the ground.”
The proposals come in a rail study for Stockport, published jointly by Stockport Council and Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM). The study was initiated last year by Cllr Iain Roberts and, in addition to a new orbital tram route from Reddish through Cheadle and Gatley to Manchester Airport, also proposes introducing a tram service on the Marple-Manchester line, extending the East Didsbury Metrolink line into Stockport and through to Hazel Grove, improving our stations (especially Stockport Station) and dealing with the challenges HS2 will bring.
“Stockport is setting out its priorities for train and tram.” Iain said. “We now have a set of coherent proposals that stack up economically and will have massive benefits not just for our area but right across south Manchester. The next step is to develop each of these proposals in more detail, consulting fully, to make this happen.”