Friday 3 Oct 2008

IMPROVING THE RAILWAY IN DEVON AND CORNWALL

Region & Route:
| Wales & Western: Wales & Borders
| Southern: Wessex
| Wales & Western
| Southern
Smoother and more reliable train journeys in Devon and Cornwall is the goal of vital annual planned rail improvement work to be carried out by Network Rail. Starting next week, essential track maintenance and renewals will begin on West Country branch lines.

Work begins on Monday 5 October on the Gunnislake branch line (Tamar Valley Line) for a week (excluding weekends), involving the replacing of life-expired rails, timbers and sleepers. The line will be closed from Monday 5 October until Friday 10 October, with replacement bus services running.

Chris Rayner, Network Rail’s territory maintenance director for the area, said: "This crucial investment is part of Network Rail’s commitment to provide an efficient and reliable railway for passengers in the region. We have worked closely with First Great Western to plan this work 18 months in advance and to ensure that disruption is kept to a minimum for rail travellers during this essential annual maintenance work."

Improvement work will also be carried out at:

Falmouth Branch (Maritime Line): 13 – 17 October and 20 – 24 October

Torquay Branch: 27 – 31 October

Looe Branch (Looe Valley Line): 3 – 7 November

Barnstaple Branch (Tarka Line): 10 – 14 November and 17– 21 November

St. Ives Branch (St Ives Bay Line): 24 - 28 November

Newquay Branch (Atlantic Coast Line): 8 - 12 December

Julian Crow, First Great Western's Regional Manager, said: "We hate to disrupt the journeys of our customers, but the engineering work is essential so that passengers in Devon and Cornwall can benefit from a more reliable and efficient service. We have worked closely with Network Rail to minimise the impact on our customers' journeys and have provided alternative services to bring passengers to their destinations."

Alternative services will be provided and details of these services will be available at stations. Customers are advised to always check journey details with the National Rail Enquiries on 08457 484950 before travelling.

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 -Western route
07730 354394
MediaRelationsWestern@networkrail.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.

Usually, there are almost five 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.

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