I am pleased to be able to share with you the following update from Network Rail, detailing the schedule of works due to take place over the Christmas period.
I would urge you to please share this vital information with your colleagues, databases and business networks to help people plan any journeys they may wish to embark on during the festive period.
Denise Rossiter, CEO Essex Chambers of Commerce
Update from Network Rail;
Our engineers will be carrying out a programme of rail improvements over the Christmas period. This will improve punctuality and performance across the Anglia Route.
But we know that this work may cause disruption for those needing to travel over the Christmas period, particularly in these unprecedented times where the easing of lockdown restrictions will provide many with the first opportunity to see their loved ones for some time. Because of this, I wanted to update you on:
• the work we're doing with industry partners to keep passengers safe;
• what rail improvements we'll be carrying out over Christmas.
Keeping passengers safe
Our Christmas work is often planned years in advance. To minimise disruption, it's scheduled to take place during times when passenger demand is usually low.
I know that there may be additional pressures on services this Christmas. I'm sorry for any disruption this work will cause those who need to travel during this time.
Working with industry partners we've taken steps so that passengers using the network can travel with confidence. This includes cleaning trains and stations more frequently and using powerful, long lasting, anti-viral products.
As an industry we'll also be:
• maximising space by running more and longer services where possible;
• giving improved travel information and alerts;
• having extra staff on hand at busy locations to help people with their journeys;
• asking passengers to plan ahead and to avoid busy times and reserve seats wherever possible;
• providing additional replacement buses where necessary to support social distancing.
We'll be carrying out engineering work from late on 24 December until 3 January. I've summarised the work that will be taking place across Anglia below.
On the Great Eastern main line we'll be:
• Refurbishing nine sets of points at Liverpool Street station (these allow trains to change from one track to another);
• Installing new structures and overhead wires at Stratford that adapt to temperature changes;
• Upgrading the power supply between Bow junction and Shenfield for the introduction of Elizabeth line services;
• Continuing station works at Ilford and Romford;
• Extending platforms 16 and 17 at Liverpool Street in preparation for the full-length Elizabeth line trains (this work is being carried out by MTR);
• Demolishing the central pier of Ardleigh Green bridge (this work is being carried out by TFL).
On the North London line we'll be:
• Strengthening bridges at Camden Road and Chalk Farm.
On the Great Eastern Main line we'll be:
• Installing new switches and crossings at Colchester (these allow trains to change tracks).
On the Southend Victoria line we'll be undertaking work between Rayleigh and Southend Victoria which includes:
• Improvements to the overhead wire;
• Track maintenance.
We'll also be:
• Carrying out maintenance on the Clacton branch line;
• Replacing overhead wires at Leigh on Sea on the London, Tilbury & Southend line.
On the Great Eastern main line we'll be:
• Refurbishing a crossover at Norwich station (this allows trains to change tracks);
• Replacing wheel timbers (which act as sleepers) at Trowse swing bridge.
• On the line from Norwich to Great Yarmouth/Lowestoft we'll be:
• Replacing an old railway bridge at Postwick.
On the West Anglia main line we'll be:
• Replacing wheel timbers at River Cam bridge;
• Enhancing Cambridge sidings (this work is being carried out by GTR).
We're advising passengers to check before they travel so they're aware of how this work may affect their journeys. They can check on the National Rail website, or with our operators Greater Anglia, C2C and Great Northern.
I hope this update is helpful. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any further queries. I can be reached on Charles.Baker@networkrail.co.uk and 07922 009841.
Public Affairs Manager, Anglia – Network Rail