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Weekend work starts soon to improve Fen Line services

Press release   •   Sep 25, 2019 10:17 BST

Platforms are being extended along the Fen Line

Network Rail has issued the following news release about upcoming engineering work:

Work will start next month at key locations on the Fen Line between King’s Lynn and Cambridge to improve services for passengers.

Work at Littleport and Waterbeach will see platforms extended and signals relocated so that longer trains can be accommodated, providing more space and seats for passengers, easing overcrowding, particularly at peak times. A new train siding is also being built at King’s Lynn to allow longer trains to be in place for the first and last service of the day.

To deliver these important benefits for passengers, engineers will work over several weekends between October 2019 and Easter 2020, with the new services likely to come into operation for the start of the December 2020 timetable.

Great Northern and Greater Anglia weekend services between King’s Lynn and Cambridge may be affected by the work, with changes to the timetables and bus replacement services operating to allow passengers to continue their journey. Work takes place on the following dates:

  • 5 - 6 October 2019
  • 12 - 13 October 2019
  • 26 - 27 October 2019
  • 2 - 3 November 2019
  • 9 -10 November 2019
  • 23 - 24 November 2019
  • 30 November- 1 December 2019
  • 25 - 26 December 2019
  • 1 -2 February 2020
  • 22 -23 February 2020
  • Easter weekend 10-12 April 2020

CrossCountry services to and from Stansted via Ely and East Midland services between Norwich and Peterborough via Ely may also be affected. Passengers travelling on these routes are advised to check before travelling on the weekends affected.

Mark Budden, route director for Network Rail Anglia said: “With work starting in October, we are forging ahead with delivering these important improvements for passengers travelling on the Fen line.

“I am sorry for the weekend disruption to services. When complete, it will bring much needed relief on overcrowded peak services between King’s Lynn and Cambridge, improving the journey experience for passengers.”

Keith Jipps, infrastructure director at Govia Thameslink Railway which runs Great Northern, said: “Longer trains will make a huge difference for our passengers between King’s Lynn and Cambridge so I’m very pleased this work is about to start.

"However, I do urge people to check online at for the temporary changes we’ll need to introduce during each weekend of engineering work.”


Contact Information

Martin Spencer

Notes to editors

Network Rail’s contractor, VolkerFitzpatrick, will be undertaking these works between September 2019 and summer 2020.

At Waterbeach work will be taking place at the end of both platforms 1 and 2 to build platform extensions and move existing signals to accommodate the longer trains.

At Littleport, we will extend Platform 2 and remove the existing passenger track crossing at the north end of the station. We will provide a new, safer access route to Platform 1 by using the underpass as a dedicated pedestrian and cycleway and build new stairs and a ramp at the southern end of the platform. Signals will also be moved to accommodate the new layout. As platform 1 is not being extended, southbound services will use selective door opening for the front four carriages only.

At King’s Lynn, a new siding will be constructed to provide the operational flexibility to allow the longer, eight-car trains to be in place for the first and last service of the day.

Govia Thameslink Railway

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) operates Thameslink, Great Northern, Southern and Gatwick Express services as follows:

  • Thameslink – cross-London services between Bedford/Peterborough/Cambridge and Brighton/Horsham/Littlehampton/East Grinstead, and between Luton/St Albans and Sutton/Wimbledon/Rainham; plus services between London and Sevenoaks
  • Great Northern – services between London and Welwyn, Hertford, Peterborough, Cambridge and King’s Lynn
  • Southern – services between London and the Sussex coast (Brighton, Worthing, Eastbourne, Bognor Regis, Hastings) and parts of Surrey, Kent and Hampshire (Ashford International, Southampton, Portsmouth)
  • Gatwick Express – fast, non-stop direct services between Gatwick Airport and London Victoria

GTR is currently the most punctual of the large and complex operators in UK rail according to 'On Time' statistics released by the Office of Rail and Road for May, June and July 2019, and fourth of all train operators in the UK