Railway timetable shake-up means Doncaster will get direct hourly service to Liverpool

Doncaster is set to gain a direct hourly service Liverpool Lime Street but direct trains from Sheffield to Manchester Airport are set to be scrapped following timetable changes.

Monday, 18th October 2021, 7:20 pm
A train arrives at Doncaster station

The Department for Transport and Transport for the North have published a statement on the work of the Manchester Recovery Task Force and launched a consultation on a proposed new rail timetable.

Aiming to address the longstanding congestion and reliability issues around Manchester, the new timetable should be implemented from December 2022.

This means the new timetable will consist of the current 18 trains per day, in each direction but instead of running to Manchester Airport, the service will run a direct, hourly service to Liverpool Lime Street instead.

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This rerouting will mean that Sheffield will gain a second direct train per hour to Liverpool Lime Street and Doncaster will gain one direct train per hour to the Merseyside station.

Passengers for the airport will need to change at Manchester Piccadilly where there will be a train every ten minutes to the airport from the adjacent platform.

Journey times between Sheffield and Doncaster to/from Manchester Airport will take a minimum of an extra 10 minutes compared with the current direct services.

The news of the scrapped direct service from South Yorkshire to Manchester Airport was criticised by Mayor Dan Jarvis.

He said: “It shows the limitations of our dilapidated rail network, that to ease congestion in one area, another must lose out. Just recently, the Prime Minister was in Manchester, promising to ‘Level Up’, but the bottom line is that all we’re seeing are worse outcomes than before. This is levelling down, not up.

“The North needs and deserves a rail network that works for Northerners, that properly connects our people and places. We’re working hard to attract investment and create great jobs, but people must be able to get to them.”


In these confusing and worrying times, local journalism is more vital than ever. Thanks to everyone who helps us ask the questions that matter by taking out a subscription or buying a paper. We stand together. Liam Hoden, editor.