Press release -
Passengers urged to check their journeys next month as Network Rail carries out vital improvement work on Midland Main Line
Network Rail has issued the following press release about engineering work planned for weekends during August, much of which will affect Thameslink services between Bedford and London:
Network Rail is urging passengers travelling between Sheffield, the East Midlands and St Pancras International on weekends in August to check before travelling as vital work to improve journeys for passengers takes place on the Midland Main Line.
To allow the work to be carried out safely, sections of the Midland Main Line will be closed, which means that passengers may need to change trains or use bus replacement services. Network Rail, East Midlands Railway, Govia Thameslink Railway and CrossCountry are urging passengers to check their journeys via National Rail Enquiries or with their train operator and allow plenty of time.
Major work is being carried over weekends and during the August Bank Holiday as this is a time when fewer people travel. The work includes:
1/2 August – Work will take place ahead of the construction of the new Brent Cross West station, which is expected to open in 2022.
8/9 and 15/16 August - Work will be carried out to renew the track on the approach to St Pancras International station.
22/23 – Network Rail engineers will test and commission new overhead line equipment on the route.
29/30/31 August – Major work will take place to commission the overhead lines and signalling system, as a vital part of the construction of Brent Cross West station.
29/30/31 August – Work will be carried out to renew the track, and replace the sleepers and ballast which support it,between Mill Hill Broadway and St Pancras International.
All of this work will help to improve journeys for passengers travelling on the Midland Main Line, bringing smoother, more reliable services and better connections.
Passengers are being urged to travel safely this summer, by maintaining social distancing, carrying hand sanitiser and buying tickets online where possible. Wearing a face mask remains mandatory on public transport, however, some people are exempt, including young children and people with hidden disabilities or breathing difficulties.
Gary Walsh, Route Director for Network Rail’s East Midlands Route, said: “This vital work will improve journeys for passengers travelling on the Midland Main Line and will help to keep the railway running reliably and smoothly for many years to come.
“We are carrying out this work over weekends in August and the Bank Holiday weekend when fewer people travel. We strongly advise passengers to check before they travel with National Rail Enquiries or their train operator, and we would like to apologise for any inconvenience.”
A spokesperson on behalf of train operators on the route, said: “We understand that that any engineering work can be inconvenient, and we would like to thank our passengers for their patience whilst these improvements are carried out on the Midland Main Line.
“Passengers should check their individual journey in advance if they are travelling over the weekends throughout August. They may need to change trains, use alternative routes or use bus replacement services.
“This work is really important to improve journeys for passengers on the Midland Main Line and bring a more reliable railway.”
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