Key rail route to North Wales to be protected from flash flooding: Flooding Beeston Castle 2016 (1)

Thursday 2 Sep 2021

Key rail route to North Wales to be protected from flash flooding

Region & Route:
North West & Central
| North West & Central: North West

Rail passengers on a key route connecting North Wales to the North West will soon benefit from railway lines which are better protected from flash flooding.

Network Rail is carrying out major track upgrades over the next four weekends between Chester and Crewe.

A £250,000 Great North Rail Project investment will improve drainage on the route to prevent heavy rain from flooding tracks.

Winter and summer storms bringing exceptional rainfall in recent years have led to lines becoming swamped, causing long delays for passengers and freight.

Chris Pye, Network Rail’s infrastructure director for the North West, said: “In recent years the region’s railway has taken a battering from storms and we’re targeting problem areas now before winter arrives.

“While we try our best to do work overnight, unfortunately the scale of this drainage work means we must close the line between Crewe and Chester so our engineers can safely improve the railway. I’d urge anyone planning to travel over the next four weekends to please check National Rail Enquiries to plan their journeys. I’d also like to thank passengers in advance for their patience.”

While this essential work takes place, the line between Chester and Crewe will need to close on the weekends of 4-5, 11-12, 18-19 and 25-26 September.

During the four weekend closures Avanti West Coast services will be diverted and Transport for Wales passengers will be kept on the move via rail replacement buses operating between Crewe and Chester stations.

Passengers are advised journeys will take longer and to check so they know exactly what to expect.

Gus Dunster, executive director of operations and safety at Avanti West Coast, said: “As Network Rail carry out improvement works between Crewe and Chester as part of their Great North Rail Project, our trains to and from North Wales will be diverted, extending journey times on these dates. We strongly recommend you make a reservation, plan your journey in advance as well as check the National Rail Enquiries website before travelling.”

Meanwhile, rail travellers are advised to continue following government guidance and wear a face covering in busy indoor settings unless they are exempt.

With good ventilation systems on trains, extra cleaning and improved information about quieter times, passengers can continue to travel with confidence.

Contact information

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

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Network Rail press office - North West & Central Region
0330 854 0100

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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