Friday 5 Jun 2015
Buses replace London trains south of St Albans on June weekend
Thameslink rail passengers, in particular those connecting with Luton Airport or Eurostar, should allow up to 75 minutes longer to travel during a weekend of Network Rail engineering work to improve services.
The multi-million pound investment programme includes new sidings at Cricklewood for Thameslink’s replacement fleet of trains arriving next year and upgrades to sections of railway track, signalling and overhead power supplies, all aimed at improving passenger services.
Buses will replace trains between St Albans City station and St Pancras International/Blackfriars from 11.15pm on Friday 19 June until the start of service on Monday 22 June 2015. In addition, on Sunday morning, 21 June, until 9:30am, these buses will be extended to run between St Pancras International and Harpenden.
Coaches will also replace East Midlands Trains (EMT) between Luton and London St Pancras International for the same period.
Thameslink trains will run from St Pancras International for Gatwick and Brighton on Saturday and from Blackfriars on Sunday. There will also be rail replacement buses between Tulse Hill and Sutton via Mitcham Junction because of further engineering work in that area.
Steve Hughes, Area Director for Network Rail, said: “We are completing many different upgrades to our rail network over the weekend of 20 and 21 June. This will bring real benefits for passengers, both in improving day-to-day reliability and providing an improved network which can run more and faster services in the future.
“By completing all of these items of work over a single weekend we minimise the impact upon passengers and we have worked hard with operators to make sure that good alternative travel routes are available. I thank passengers for their patience during this essential work.”
Roger Perkins for Thameslink said: “We know this work will inconvenience many passengers over this weekend but the long-term benefits it will help deliver will be significant, not least a stabling and cleaning facility for the new fleet of Thameslink trains that we will introduce next year.
“There are alternatives in place for our trains south of St Albans and I would urge passengers to check before they travel and to allow longer for their journeys.”
Notes to editors
For information and travel advice, visit thameslinkrailway.com/engineering or @TLRailUK or visit the National Rail Enquiries website where details of alternative transport are detailed www.nationalrail.co.uk
Thameslink rail replacement buses
Thameslink plan to run a mix of non-stop and 'all stations' buses between St Albans City and St Pancras International. Typically there will be 4 'fast' buses and 2 'all stations' buses leaving St Albans City station every 15 minutes.
Passengers arriving from London by bus at St Albans
Our plan is to close the Ridgmont Road car park from approximately 16:00 on Friday afternoon 19 June until 06:00 on Monday 22 June, to enable the car park and the private section of Ridgmont Road to be used by buses arriving from London, which will set down passengers adjacent to the entrance to platform 4. It is planned to have car park personnel on continuous duty at the junction of Ridgmont Road and Victoria Street from 16:00 Friday to 06:00 on Monday to ensure that entry is limited to buses and to Ridgmont Road residents, who will be informed of what’s happening by way of a letter this weekend (6/7 June).
Passengers heading to London by bus from St Albans
Buses will leave from bus stands C and D in the bus interchange at the front of the station.
Passengers who have a permit to park in Ridgmont Road car park can use that permit to park in the Station Way car park.
East Midlands Trains buses
East Midlands Trains will be providing a non-stop coach link (eight coaches an hour) between Luton station and St Pancras International.
Luton Airport shuttle buses
Thameslink will be running the normal timetabled service between Luton Airport Parkway and Luton Airport. However, there will be a frequent additional bus service from Luton Airport Parkway to Luton station to connect with all arriving and departing East Midlands Trains services.
Alternative travel options
As well as taking a rail replacement bus, Thameslink passengers can choose to use their tickets on one of the following routes:
- The Abbey Flier from St Albans Abbey to Watford Junction with connections to London Euston and to East Croydon, Gatwick and Brighton
- Welwyn Garden City or Hatfield to London King's Cross with Great Northern (please note: a bus link will not be provided between Thameslink and Great Northern)
- From Elstree & Borehamwood, the 107 or 292 bus to Edgware London Underground station for the Northern line
- On Sunday only, Thameslink tickets will be valid on bus routes 63 and 45 between St Pancras International and Blackfriars. Buses will leave from Bus Stop S in Midland Road. This is the same stop that our rail replacement buses will be setting down customers from St Albans and intermediate stations
- On Sunday only, the London Blackfriars to Brighton (and vice-versa) services will call additionally at Elephant & Castle, for connections to/from the Tube.
Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41
Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries
Network Rail press office - Rachel Lowe
About Network Rail
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.
Every day, there are more than 4.8 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.