ESSENTIAL rail improvement work over Christmas and New Year has been planned to cause the least disruption to passengers travelling between London, the Midlands, North West and Cumbria.
This year the bulk of the £30million bank holiday upgrades will take place on Christmas Day and Boxing Day, although there is also work taking place outside those dates. The work includes:
- December 25-29 and between January 1-4: Transpennine Route Upgrade work in Manchester
- December 24-29: upgrades continue to signals at Birmingham New Street and Macclesfield
- December 24-29: platform extensions so longer trains with more seats can run between Wolverhampton and Telford
- December 24-29: track being laid over the new innovative Bletchley flyover as part of the East West Rail project
- December 27-29: Chiltern line bridge replacement work in Stratford-upon-Avon
- January 2: West Coast main line is closed between Wigan and Preston
Passengers are advised to allow extra time for their journey, that they may need to change trains, or use a replacement bus service.
Anyone planning to travel during the work is urged to check with their train operator or at www.nationalrail.co.uk.
Tim Shoveller, managing director for Network Rail’s North West and Central region, said: “While some essential work is taking place to upgrade our railway over the festive period, we’ve worked hard with train operators to reduce the impact on passengers as far as possible so they can spend time with their families and friends this Christmas.
“I’d like to thank the thousands of rail workers who will be working to keep services running, and those delivering upgrades to improve our railway and bring more reliable journeys to passengers in future.”
To combat Covid, passengers must wear a face covering in train stations, on train services and any replacement bus services. Those who fail to do so face a fine of £200.
Enhanced cleaning procedures will remain in place to stop the spread of Covid-19, with hand sanitiser on the station concourse. To find out more about what Network Rail is doing to stop the spread of Covid-19 visit:www.networkrail.co.uk/coronavirus