A ‘pioneering’ development of trains which run on both electric and diesel could be seen in Buxton as soon as next year.
The new Class 769 bi-mode trains are part of Northern’s £1b modernisation of the network. The trains are seen to be more powerful and flexible.
Glyn Hellman, spokesman for Northern, said: “There is every possibility these new trains will be used on the Buxton to Manchester line.
“There is absolutely every chance High Peak commuters will be on these new trains.
“The conversion of the old Class 319 train is happening now and we can expect them on the rails by May 2018.”
Chairman of the Friends of Buxton Station, David Carlisle, welcomed the news.
He said: “Anything which can improve the service is great news for rail-users.
“There are problems with the steep incline near Hazel Grove and not all trains can cope with that journey, so this is a massive step in the right direction for a more regular service.”
Rob Warnes, Performance and Planning Director for Northern, said: “We are really proud to be involved in this pioneering development.
“Bi-mode trains will bring the benefits of railway modernisation to more customers, more quickly.”
Glyn explained the ‘beauty’ of the new conversion.
He added: “Eight trains are being converted and because they can go anywhere, one day they might be doing a Buxton route but then may be needed elsewhere the next day.”