Network Rail


Residents understand the need to repair and improve the railway, but there has been a decade of Network Rail and their partners promising consideration and the possible avenues for mitigation, promises which largely have consistently not been met.  Meetings with residents have been set up on several occasions and ear plugs have been issued, but the rump of undertakings which would make a genuine improvement has been consistently delayed or forgotten. 

In January the Parish Council organised a meeting with the then MP Sarah Dines, the Environmental Health team at DCC, residents, Network Rail and Volkerrail (who have done the new signalling) to try to thrash out an agreement for lasting support for the people who live down by the line.   

The Parish Council put together a check list of what they have promised and what they have done, and at each parish council meeting we take stock of the situation and press for better responses. 

One important point is that NR own the sidings at Grindleford, so they have broader rights to use it than, say, at Dore.   We do not believe that gives them carte blanche to be any noisier, intolerant or non-informative than they have to be.   The Parish Council has now let NR know that they will be returning to our MP’s office to ask her to speak to the Secretary of State for Transport.

The main issues are: 

Laying new track Jan – March – unexpected noise, including amber noise levels

This work has now been completed. 

Track laying and to ongoing maintenance work along the whole line (Grindleford used as a depot)

There is no proper assurance that this will not being continuing for ever.  NR own the sidings and also have special dispensation to do ‘whatever is needed’ to maintain the track.  They are very difficult to hold to account for poor behaviour by their sub-contractors. 

 Generator noise

There is a regular loud generator hum overnight (and during the day).  NR have been asked to lay an electric cable to remove this nuisance. They have said the project work is ‘nearly at an end’ yet since then there have two more incidents of noisy work.   From the residents’ point of view, this has been going on for many years with the next new project coming on stream.  If the track continues to be used as a depot after this project is over, it will still need electricity on an ongoing basis for the foreseeable future.   There is no sign of any plans to do anything about this. 


A tree screen to reduce the impact of light and noise has been promised for the last 8 years.  It is unfortunate that this has yet to happen, as had the trees been planted at the outset, they would be big enough by now to provide some cover.  Nevertheless, if maintenance from Grindleford is to be ongoing the tree screen is still needed as soon as possible.  Residents would also welcome the carbon abatement.

Damage to Station Approach 

The road down to the station, which is the sole access for a number of residents, has being significantly damaged by Network Rail low loaders and HGVs.  Promised repairs are still awaited.   The road is owned by NR so DCC will not repair it. 

Using the Bamford site 

There is another depot at Bamford which is away from houses.  Residents understand that Bamford depot could not be used for the recent line upgrade because of the time window for repairs.  It is still not clear why Bamford cannot be used for work which is being carried out elsewhere on the line. 


Management of Grindleford depot changed at the end of March  to the North & East route, and a formal meeting with them has been requested where the legacy issues can be explained and residents and Grindleford parish council can get a sensible summary of agreed action to mitigate the impact of Network Rail’s ongoing maintenance.   This meeting is still awaited.    

Text Box: Latest news is that Network Rail’s planning application to demolish the signal box has been refused by the Peak Park, because it is in a conservation area.  The Parish Council was instrumental in finding a Plan B if the application was approved (ie to put the signal box, or as much of it as would survive the journey, into someone’s garden) but also in setting out the arguments to Network Rail and Peak Park about why it should stay where it is.  We now need local help to keep it maintained.  

Text Box:  Signal Box

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