Friday 4 Jan 2019
Drainage improvement work between Preston and Blackpool starts this weekend
- London North Western
Passengers are being advised to plan their journeys as the final phase of work to upgrade railway drainage between Preston and Blackpool takes place over the next seven weekends.
The railway between Preston and Blackpool will be closed for seven consecutive Sundays from 6 January 2019.
This means buses will replace trains between Preston and both Blackpool North and Blackpool South stations. Passengers are advised to plan ahead and to check before travelling.
The work is being completed as part of the multi-billion-pound Great North Rail Project, which allowed the introduction of greener and quieter electric trains on Blackpool’s railway in 2018.
Network Rail engineers will be completing two major drainage upgrades in the Poulton-le-Fylde, and Kirkham & Wesham station areas to help make the railway more reliable.
Work will also be carried out to fit exterior cladding panels on Kirkham & Wesham station’s two new lifts. The lifts and a new footbridge were installed last year as part of the station’s transformation and have provided easier access to trains for passengers.
Lawrence Cheung, sponsor for Network Rail, said: “We are working closely with Northern to minimise the disruption to passengers and raise awareness of these changes to Sunday train services between Preston and Blackpool.
“The upgrade and wider investment will result in a better and more reliable railway that will serve passengers for many decades to come and help boost the economy across the north of England.
“We understand that this work also affects our lineside neighbours and have written to residents who live near to where our work is taking place.
“There is never a good time to affect journeys but we have planned the work to affect the least amount of passengers for the shortest amount of time. This is essential work and I’d like to thank passengers in advance for their understanding.”
Chris Jackson, regional director at Northern, said: “The Great North Rail Project is transforming the railway across the north of England and the work on the line in early 2019 is a vital part of this.
“Thanks to the work carried out by Network Rail in 2018, we are now able to run electric services to Blackpool from across the region and we will continue to work closely with Network Rail to keep disruption to a minimum.
“We have plans to keep people on the move on Sundays which are published on our website.
“I’m sure our customers will be frustrated with more engineering work, but I’d like to thank them for their continued patience. I urge all customers to plan carefully for weekend travel to and from Blackpool while the work is taking place.”
For more information and advice on how to plan your journey, go to www.nationalrail.co.uk
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 4.7 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.
We are building a better railway for a better Britain.