Network Rail is gearing up for another busy bank holiday weekend this Easter ahead of the delivery of more than 200 projects and a £70m investment across Britain over the holiday period.
More than 13,000 rail workers will be out in force over the four-day long weekend, working on some of the country’s largest infrastructure projects, including:
- Crossrail: Significant work on routes out of London Liverpool Street station in preparation for the start of Elizabeth line services in 2018, which will increase London’s rail transport capacity by 10 per cent and cut journey times.
- Thameslink Programme: Major improvement work taking place between London Charing Cross, London Cannon Street and London Bridge stations. Completion of the project in 2018 will allow for new, spacious trains every two-three minutes through central London at peak times. Read our Spotlight feature about the work.
- Waterloo station: Major track renewal as part of the Waterloo station upgrade, which will increase capacity, improve station facilities and lengthen platforms.
- Great North Rail Project: Continued work on the Ordsall Chord project to improve connections in Manchester, and remodelling work at Salford Central station, including the structures replacement of Chapel Street bridge.
- West of England: Network Rail is modernising Bath Spa station in preparation for new, longer trains which will enter service in the near future.
"This Easter, thousands of rail workers will be working round the clock to deliver our Railway Upgrade Plan. This will provide faster, better services in the long run and help relieve overcrowding to respond to the huge growth on Britain’s railways.
"We know that many people want to use the railway during the Easter holidays and the good news is that over 95 per cent of the network is unaffected by this work. But there will be some services that are impacted and so we strongly advise passengers to plan their journeys in advance."
Phil Hufton, Network Rail managing director for England and Wales
Rebecca Grogan, a mobile operations manager from Wembley, will be working over the Easter bank holiday weekend. She is stationed at London Euston and her role means she acts as a first response to any incident on her patch.
"I’m excited as it’ll be the first bank holiday I’ve worked. As a mobile operations manager, you really are in the heart of the operational railway and you get to interact with so many different people. My role over Easter will be making sure staff and passengers are kept safe by carrying out patrols and checks in stations and on site, and responding to call-outs.
"I do sympathise with people who need to travel to be able to see friends and family over the bank holiday, but most of the network is unaffected and the overall number of travellers is significantly less than normal."
Rebecca Grogan, mobile operations manager
The programme of work this Easter is just part of Network Rail’s five-year Railway Upgrade Plan – a multi-million pound investment in the rail network that will improve passenger journeys of the future.
As part of this programme, various pieces of upgrade work are planned for the remaining bank holidays throughout 2017. Currently, large-scale work across London’s rail network is planned throughout August this year, with some work starting as early as 5 August and lasting until 28 August.
Passengers are being advised to plan their journeys as early as possible by visiting www.nationalrail.co.uk (tickets are available three months in advance) and by taking note of in-station advertising.
About Network Rail
Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain’s railway – the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts, and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.6bn journeys by rail every year - double the number of 1996 - and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We’re investing £38bn in the railway by 2019 to deliver more frequent, more reliable, safer services and brighter and better stations.