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Friday, June 25, 2021

This is a platform alteration – all change at London King’s Cross next month as Network Rail continues to transform track layout

  • Network Rail is improving the track layout at London King’s Cross and reopening a disused tunnel in the main stage of a £1.2billion upgrade of the East Coast Main Line
  • Slightly reduced services continue to run over the Easter bank holiday for passengers making essential journeys, and people are urged to minimise travel
  • No trains to/from London King’s Cross on Friday 23, Saturday 24 or Sunday 25 April
  • Platforms 0-6 will reopen for passengers on 26 April as work begins at platforms 7-11

Platform edges have been demolished, track has been lifted and overhead line equipment has been removed as London King’s Cross prepares for its biggest platform alteration next month.

The main part of a major project to simplify the track layout, and reopen a tunnel, just outside the station, that has been disused for 40 years, got underway at the beginning of March. This will allow more trains to enter and exit the station, reduce congestion and bring smoother, more reliable journeys for passengers.

Since then, platforms 0-6 have been closed and over the next month, hundreds of workers will be on site 24/7 to rebuild them, and replace and realign the track, before they reopen on Monday 26 April.

The project has been planned carefully and throughout the vast majority of this work, including over Easter, train services will continue to run to and from the major transport hub. In line with the latest Government guidance, people are urged to minimise travel over the Easter bank holiday.

On Friday 23, Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 April changes will be made to the signalling in the station. This vital halfway point – before work completes in June – will then allow teams to begin lifting the tracks at platforms 7-11, as passengers use the newly reconstructed platforms 0-6 instead.

This work can only be done safely when there are no trains in the area and the following changes to services will be in place over the three days:

Friday 23 April

  • LNER trains to/from the North of England and Scotland will start/end at either Peterborough or Stevenage, where passengers can change onto Thameslink train services to/from St Pancras International.
  • Grand Central will run a reduced service between Sunderland/Bradford and Finsbury Park.
  • Hull Trains will not run.

Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 April

  • LNER trains to/from the North of England and Scotland will start/end at either Peterborough or St Neots. A replacement coach service will run between St Neots and Bedford, where passengers can change onto Thameslink train services to/from St Pancras International.
  • Grand Central and Hull Trains services will not run to or from London.

Passengers who need to travel are strongly advised to plan ahead and check their journey via National Rail Enquiries, at EastCoastUpgrade.co.uk or with their train operator. People travelling to London will need to change trains and journeys will take longer than usual.

Once the station reopens on Monday 26 April, trains will continue with a slight reduction to long distance services. People should allow plenty of time and avoid peak times where possible. 

Teams will then continue with the final stages of work to transform the track layout. There will be no services to or from King’s Cross on Friday 4, Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 June, and a full service will resume once again on Monday 7 June.

The East Coast Upgrade, which also includes upgrades to the power supply and a new tunnel at Werrington, will bring improved reliability and punctuality for passengers travelling on the East Coast Main Line, better connecting towns and cities between Scotland, the North and London.

Ed Akers, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail’s East Coast Upgrade, said: “It’s strange seeing no trains, no track and no passengers across half of King’s Cross as we make major progress to install the completely redesigned, simpler track layout.

“Working with the wider rail industry, we’ve managed well with the complex track that was laid over 40 years ago, but this vital stage of the project will make it much more practical for trains coming in and out of the station – meaning more reliable journeys for passengers.

“We’ve carefully planned this project to keep disruption to a minimum, and as we start work at platforms 7-11, trains will be able to use platforms 0-6. We want to thank passengers for their continued patience as we make essential changes to the signalling over the three-day closure.”

A spokesperson on behalf of train operators on the route, said: “We would like to thank passengers for continuing to follow the latest Government guidance and ask them to minimise travel over Easter.

“Train services are continuing throughout the majority of this work at King’s Cross, which will bring more reliable journeys for passengers.

“People who do need to travel on Friday 23, Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 April are strongly advised to plan ahead and check their journey via National Rail Enquiries, at EastCoastUpgrade.co.uk or with their train operator.”

Photo credit: Network Rail

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