Network Rail have announced the dates for electrified rail services near Preston as follows:
- Manchester to West Coast Main Line and Newton-le-Willows, December 2013
- Newton-le-Willows to Liverpool Lime Street; Hyton to Wigan, December 2014
- Preston to Blackpool, December 2015
- Manchester Victoria to Preston, December 2016
Electrifying the line to Newton le Willows enables services from Manchester and Liverpool to Scotland through Preston to use electric traction.
The work is already showing effect to Blackpool with plans raise bridges and close roads along the route being announced.