Today’s a ‘catch up with friends’ day so I’m en-route to Warrington to meet up with a couple of other characters from the rail industry before September’s hectic schedule begins.

Walking down to Sowerby Bridge station this morning I could feel the distinctive chill in the air that heralds a change in the seasons. We’ve had such a fabulous summer this year that I’m loathe to see it go, but that’s life!

I was happy to see that work’s started on the station’s platform extensions, in readiness for the arrival of Northern’s new train fleet.

Right now I’m waiting for my connection st Manchester Oxford Rd. I’ve not been here since the Ordsall chord opened and it’s made me appreciate what a busy corridor the two track section between Piccadilly and Deansgate is nowadays. Trains are literally queuing to get through it! The diversity of operators (both freight and passenger) liveries and classes is entertaining – and sometimes surprising. I didn’t expect to see a Northern Class 323 working through to Liverpool Lime St on a local stopper!