Network Rail is investing £111 million on the railway over Christmas and New Year so that reliability and services are even better in 2020.
Disruption will be kept to a minimum, and as a result, the majority of the network won’t be affected by upgrade work; it’s impossible to make this the case across the board, but it will mean more reliable infrastructure, better facilities and an improved service for passengers.
Network Rail is working with the various train operators to ensure that much of the work is carried out throughout Christmas Day and Boxing Day – the only two in the year when the railway is completely closed.
Almost 400 projects will be delivered by in excess of 20,000 railway staff over Christmas and New Year, with all corners of the UK set to benefit.
There will be multiple major upgrades at London King’s Cross, with tunnel and structure work, drainage inspection and overhead line equipment upgrade all planned; this will improve capacity, reliability and operational flexibility; the majority of this work will take place over Christmas Day and Boxing Day.
Elsewhere, track quality will be improved at Ashford International, and track maintenance will take place between London Liverpool Street and Hackney Downs.
Andrew Haines, Chief Executive of Network Rail, commented: “Our passengers expect and deserve a more reliable railway.
“That’s why this Christmas we are working on the railway across the country to improve services for our passengers.
“While significantly fewer people travel over Christmas, we know that some of our passengers will have important plans to visit friends and family, so please do check before you travel.”
Work on the North West and Central region – running from Euston and Marylebone, to Scotland via the West Midlands and North West – has been planned meticulously so that the fewest number of passengers are affected and by the end of the festive season, a much more reliable railway will await passengers and businesses.