Monday 20 Feb 2006

£2.5 MILLION INVESTMENT FOR THE NORTH LONDON LINE

Region & Route:
South East
London North Western
North West Central
Southern
Rail passengers in London are to benefit from a multi-million pound project to replace essential track equipment at Gunnersbury Junction in West London. The crucial work will be carried out by contractors on behalf of Network Rail between Friday 31 March and Monday 10 April 2006.  This will affect Silverlink Metro passengers travelling between Richmond and Willesden Junction on the North London Line and also London Underground passengers using the District line between Richmond and Turnham Green.  Jon Wiseman, Network Rail Route Director, said: “This major investment at Gunnersbury Junction is essential to ensure the future reliability of this busy stretch of railway.  The temporary closure of the line will allow our engineers to work around the clock to get this complex programme of work done as quickly and efficiently as possible.” The £2.5m project will replace the 40-year-old track and components at Gunnersbury to improve the long-term reliability of the line for passengers.  Track maintenance work will also be carried out at Richmond, Kew Bridge, Turnham Green and Bollo Lane as well as work to improve the lineside environment by removing graffiti, litter and vegetation in the area. Network Rail will also take advantage of the line closure to improve the signalling systems at Gunnersbury and install a new relay room, in order to reduce the likelihood of future delays caused by signal failures. Jon Wiseman continued: “We have planned the work to coincide with the Easter school break, when fewer people are expected to be travelling on this line.  However, for those that do wish to travel, we have worked very closely with train operators to ensure alternative arrangements are in place.” Posters and leaflets with information on alternative travel arrangements will be available at affected stations, sent to customers by email and published on the train operator websites:  www.silverlink-trains.com and www.tube.tfl.gov.uk.  In addition, Silverlink, South West trains and London Underground will hold ‘Meet the Manager’ events at all affected stations and additional Customer Information Assistants will be on hand to assist during the closure.  Silverlink Metro’s Route Director, Mark Steward commented: “Silverlink’s Metro route is a vital rail artery around north London and any problems at the Richmond end impact on the whole service.   That is why the junction at Gunnersbury is so important to the operation of the whole route.  The replacement of the junction by our colleagues in Network Rail is therefore an important step in securing the future of the Metro route.  We will do our best to minimise any inconvenience to passengers while the work is carried out and, with London Underground and London Buses, have drawn up a comprehensive range of alternative routes for passengers wanting to travel to/from stations between Richmond and South Acton/Turnham Green during this period. “ Alternative travel arrangements South West Trains services through Richmond are not be affected by this work.  •        Bus replacement services will operate on the North London Line between Richmond and Acton Central, and between Richmond and Willesden Junction on 1/2 April only •        District line passengers can make use of South West Trains services from Richmond to London Waterloo (valid tube tickets will be accepted).  London Underground trains will also be diverted at Richmond to Ealing Broadway and Wimbledon.  Bus replacement services will operate between Richmond and Turnham Green. Bob Thorogood, General Manager of the District line, added: "Once the work is complete, District line customers travelling between Richmond and Turnham Green should notice a smoother, more reliable journey that is less prone to disruption - especially to flooding, track and signal failure.  During the closure, valid LU tickets will be accepted on South West Train services between Richmond and Waterloo and frequent rail replacement bus services will be in operation. LU District line services that would normally terminate at Richmond will instead terminate at Ealing Broadway during off-peak periods and at Wimbledon and Ealing Broadway during the morning and evening peak." Customers are advised to check their travel details in advance with National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50 or London Travel Information on 020 7222 1234.

Contact information

Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Journalists
Network Rail press office - South East route
020 3357 7969
southeastroutecomms@networkrail.co.uk

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We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

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