Engineers have been carefully managing and monitoring the situation with trains running through the area at reduced speed since the New Year.
An hourly direct service between Sheffield and London will be maintained after Tuesday.
Phil Verster, Route Managing Director for Network Rail, explained: “We have done everything possible to maintain a normal service through Unstone but the continuing poor weather and movement of the bank means we will need to close one of the tracks. This decision has been taken to protect the safety of everyone who uses and works on the railway. We thank passengers and our freight customers for their patience as we deal with this situation.
“From the start of service on Tuesday 18 February we will need to alter train services in order to divert around this area while our expert teams stabilise the hillside. The line will fully reopen as quickly as it is safe to do so. At the moment we anticipate the work could take between four and six weeks. We will confirm the re-opening date as soon as possible”
Service alterations from Tuesday 18 February 2014:
- East Midlands Trains services between Sheffield and St Pancras will operate via Beighton with extended journey times of around 20 minutes
- Other East Midlands Trains services between Sheffield and Derby will start and terminate at Derby
- East Midlands Trains services between Norwich and Liverpool services will split at Nottingham and run as two separate train services
- Northern Rail services between Leeds and Nottingham will start and terminate at Sheffield. Replacement buses will run between Sheffield and Chesterfield, calling at Dronfield
- East MidlandsTrains will run between Sheffield and Nottingham via an alternative route (Beighton), calling additionally at Langley Mill and at Alfreton as timetabled
- CrossCountry services will divert via Beighton with extended journey times.
- Freight traffic carrying cement aggregates and limestone from the peak district to the midlands, Anglia and the south west is also being diverted.
CrossCountry, East Midlands Trains and Northern Rail said: “We are sorry that our passengers are facing this disruption. We have been working closely with Network Rail to understand the problem at Unstone and to maintain services wherever possible. We would like to thank customers for their patience and understanding and assure them we are all working together to return rail services in the area as soon as possible."
Passengers are advised to check National Rail Enquiries for specific journey information – 08457 48 49 50 or www.nationalrail.co.uk
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 1.5bn journeys by rail every year; an increase of 50% in a decade. We’re investing £38bn in the railway by 2019 to deliver more frequent, more reliable, safer services and brighter and better stations.