‘Travel either side’ advice for rail passengers this Easter bank holiday

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Passengers travelling between London Euston and Scotland over the Easter bank holiday are being advised to travel either side of the long weekend.

This Easter Network Rail is investing £19m to improve future journeys for passengers and freight on the West Coast main line and key routes in the Midlands and North West.

Between Good Friday (7 April) and Easter Monday (10 April), Euston station will be closed to main line train services for the final phase of upgrades to track and signalling at Watford junction to increase the number of trains which can run in the future.

As this work needs the entire railway to be closed through Watford over the four-day long weekend, trains will start and finish at Milton Keynes instead.

For that reason Network Rail is advising that the best time to travel will be on Thursday 6 and Tuesday 11 April.

Passengers needing to travel on the days in between could have longer journeys, fewer available seats, and may need to use rail replacement buses.

To plan journeys and for the latest travel information people should visit www.nationalrail.co.uk.

Dave Penney, Network Rail passenger director for the North West and Central region, said: “Once again this Easter we’re investing millions of pounds to make the West Coast main line and the major routes which serve it fit for the future. We carefully consider the best time to do this essential work and long bank holiday weekends continue to give our engineers the time they need to close the railway for complex jobs like track replacements and bridge overhauls while disrupting the fewest number of passengers.

“That’s why our advice is to travel either side of the bank holiday if you can – before we close parts of the railway for these essential upgrades. If you can’t make your journey then, please plan ahead and check National Rail Enquiries so you know exactly what to expect – and that’s longer journeys with rail replacement buses from Good Friday to Easter Monday on some routes.”

Other essential work which will see parts of the railway in Network Rail’s North West and Central region closed over the bank holiday include:

  • A bridge replacement in Sutton Coldfield (closing the Cross City line between Birmingham New Street and Lichfield Trent Valley on 7-10 April)
  • A railway closure between Lancaster and Carlisle for multiple track upgrades along the West Coast main line (8- 11 April). This also results in rail replacement buses on the Lakes line between Windermere and Oxenholme.
  • Switches and crossings upgrade at Weaver junction in Cheshire on Easter Sunday meaning no direct services from Crewe to Liverpool.
  • Longer journeys through Crewe due to improvements to signalling (7-11 April)
  • Ongoing improvements to the Hope Valley line between Sheffield and Manchester
  • Changes to West Coast main line journeys in Scotland because of continuing Carstairs junction upgrades

Passengers should plan ahead at www.nationalrail.co.uk or check with their train operator for the latest journey information.

People can also follow the progress of improvement work using the #EasterRailWorks hashtag on Twitter.

Image credit: Network Rail

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