Network Rail has completed a range of essential upgrades to the railway between London Euston, the Midlands, North West and Scotland over Easter.
Between Friday 7 and Tuesday 11 April, teams carried out vital work on the railway to improve passenger and freight services on the West Coast main line – the Backbone of Britain.
The £19m investment across the whole of Network Rail’s North West and Central region saw:
- Completion of track improvements to allow more train flexibility at Watford junction into London Euston
- A £4m freight railway bridge replacement in Sutton Coldfield
- Multiple track upgrades along the West Coast main line between Lancaster and Carlisle
- Switches and crossings upgrade at Weaver junction in Cheshire on Easter Sunday
- Improvements to signalling and track renewals in Crewe
- Ongoing improvements to the Hope Valley line between Sheffield and Manchester
Today, as rail services returned to normal after the major upgrades, Network Rail is thanking passengers for their patience.
Dave Penney, Network Rail’s North West & Central region passenger director, said: “Hundreds of frontline staff worked throughout the bank holiday to improve journeys for passengers and freight in the North West and Central region and I’m immensely proud of them and our contractors who helped Network Rail deliver this vital programme of upgrades.
“Now our attention turns to the early May bank holiday when more essential railway improvements will take place. Thankfully there will be less disruption but we’re once again asking people to check before they travel in case their journey is impacted by our continual efforts to maintain and improve the railway for the future.”
Over the early May bank holiday further railway upgrades will improve passenger and freight journeys.
This work will include:
- Overhead line work to prepare for hot weather at Euston and Kings Langley
- Track upgrades at Harrow and Wealdstone
- Overhead line upgrades as part of a year-long power supply upgrade project at Bushey
- Upgrades to track foundation stone at Willesden North and Watford South Junction
- Track renewal at Sunnyside between Berkhamstead and Tring and at Chadwell Farm
- Track upgrades between Lancaster and Carlisle on Sunday 30 April
- Platform extensions at Leyland station in Lancashire
Euston station will be closed on Sunday 30 April with trains terminating once again at Milton Keynes with bus shuttle services to Bedford so passengers can catch trains into London St Pancras.
Rail replacement buses will also be in operation on Sunday 30 April on the Lakes line between Oxenholme and Windermere, and on the West Coast main line between Lancaster and Carlisle.
To plan journeys and for the latest travel information visit: www.networkrail.co.uk/wcml.
Meanwhile, journeys through the Midlands on CrossCountry services will continue to be impacted by work to repair a railway viaduct which takes trains over the river Thames between Oxford and Didcot.
- Latest information: Nuneham viaduct stabilisation work and its impact on passengers
People should check with their train operator or with National Rail Enquiries (www.nationailrail.co.uk) to see how the ongoing repairs are affecting long-distance travel through the Midlands towards Reading and onwards to the south coast of England.
Photo/video credit: Network Rail