Monday 4 Jan 2021
Network Rail staff worked between Christmas and New Year to improve the railway for passengers on lines from London Waterloo to Surrey, Hampshire and Wiltshire
Network Rail staff worked tirelessly between Christmas and the New Year to improve the railway for passengers on a series of projects across London, Surrey, Hampshire and Wiltshire.
The largest programme of work took place between Clapham Junction and Waterloo, on a site near Nine Elms junction in south west London. The project, which finished this morning (4 January), kicked off on Christmas Day and saw engineers upgrade track and switches and crossings (which allow trains to move between tracks) and clear vegetation.
Mark Killick, Network Rail Wessex route director, said: “I want to pay tribute to the hundreds of staff who worked between Christmas and new year to improve the railway for passengers.
“I want to thank passengers for their understanding while the work has gone on, and also the communities where our teams have been working 24/7, as we know it can be difficult to have so much work going on next to your home.
“Unfortunately, during the holiday period our people also dealt with two unexpected incidents. Following Storm Bella, a landslip meant we needed to deliver emergency work close to Wanborough station. Also, while the work at Nine Elms was taking place, a section of brick wall on a viaduct collapsed, and there will be some changes to South Western Railway services from Waterloo as a result.
“We are rebuilding the wall as quickly as possible; there were no injuries and investigations continue into the cause of the collapse.”
Alan Penlington, SWR’s customer experience director, said: "I would to thank the team at Network Rail for their hard work over the Christmas and New Year period in helping to improve the network so we can deliver a better, more reliable service for our customers.
“However, following the collapse of a brick wall during engineering works in the Nine Elms area of London, we need to amend services to and from Waterloo station from Monday 4 January whilst Network Rail carry out remedial work.
"We apologise for any disruption caused and reassure our customers that we're working hard to update journey planners as quickly as possible. Customers should check www.southwesternrailway.com before travelling for the latest information.”
Between Christmas and new year, engineers also:
- Strengthened Millway Road bridge in Andover and cleared vegetation between Whitchurch and Andover;
- Upgraded the switches and crossings between Hook and Basingstoke and at Eastleigh West junction;
- Replaced track and supporting structures at Cow Lane bridge near Cosham, Portsmouth; and
- Replaced timber structures on the bridge at Portcreek Junction, which is between Cosham and Hilsea
SWR are currently running a revised service with services on the Hounslow Loop reduced to one train per hour, as well as the removal of some peak services from Reading, Shepperton (via Twickenham), Farnham and Hounslow. If passengers have to travel, they are advised to check the latest information beforehand.
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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.