Wednesday 7 Apr 2004


South East
London North Western
Network Rail is embarking on a challenge which will deliver improvements to the North London Line and the thousands of passengers who use it everyday. Freight and passenger trains on the stretch of track at Dalston Kingsland in North London can only run at 30 mph due to an old Victorian sewer and the impact it is having on the track above. Six feet under the track, the 150 year-old sewer has collapsed. We have installed a temporary pump, which diverts the sewer around the blockage, but in order for the speed restriction to be lifted and trains to run faster, the sewer needs to be totally replaced. Network Rail has employed specialist contractors to remove the old sewer and install new track foundations and drainage. A new sewer will then be built following a new course and avoiding the railway.  Once the sewer work is complete we can get on with our speciality: renewing the track.  2,300 yards of old jointed track will be replaced with continuous welded rail, 9,126 tonnes of new ballast and 3,450 new sleepers will be used. These improvements will deliver a smoother, quieter and more reliable journey for passengers.  - more – Page – 2 The extensive work will take four weekends to complete. We will start work on Good Friday (9 April) and complete the work on bank holiday Monday (3 May).  Each weekend we will be working around-the-clock and the railway will be closed giving us uninterrupted access to the track.    Jon Wiseman, Network Rail General Manager said: “This £5m project is one of the most complex pieces of work we have undertaken on the North London Line in recent years. The work will however enable passenger and freight services to travel faster and the track will be more reliable and deliver a better journey.” To ensure that passengers are still able to utilise the North London Line, Silverlink will provide a number of replacement services which include alternative arrangements over the Easter weekend and the May bank holiday weekend.  For further information about passenger services during the work, contact National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50 or consult Silverlink’s website

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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 1.65bn journeys by rail every year and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We employ 38,000 people across Britain and work round-the-clock, each and every day, to provide a safe, reliable railway.

About the Railway Upgrade Plan

The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail's investment plan for Britain's railways. It makes up two-thirds of Network Rail's £40bn spending priorities for the five years to 2019 and represents the biggest sustained programme of rail modernisation since the Victoria era. It is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to the tremendous growth Britain's railways continue to experience; passenger numbers have doubled in the past 20 years and are set to double again over the next 25 years - so we need to continue to invest in building a bigger, better railway. For passengers, that means:

  • longer, faster more frequent trains;
  • better, more reliable infrastructure; and
  • better facilities for passengers, especially at stations.

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