Monday 26 Sep 2011


Region & Route:
| Eastern: Anglia
| Eastern

The transformation of train services between Cambridge and London Liverpool Street took a major step forward this weekend with the installation of a new footbridge at Cambridge station.

The 18-metre covered walkway will connect the station entrance and existing platforms with the new island platform, which will provide extra capacity for the railway when it opens in December.

Network Rail engineers worked round the clock on Sunday to lift the 15-tonne bridge into place, connecting it to the new lift shafts and stairwells. Cycle guttering is being provided alongside the stairs and lifts to platform level will make access to the new island platform easy for everyone.

Andrew Munden, Network Rail route director, said: “The pace of change at Cambridge over the last few months has been quite astonishing. These improvements are part of an investment programme which will see the station and surrounding area transformed over the coming years.

“I’m pleased the footbridge installation this weekend went smoothly as it means we’ve now completed a vital part of the project. The two new platforms are set to make a real difference to passengers, boosting capacity, improving punctuality and reducing overcrowding further still.”

Andrew Chivers, National Express East Anglia managing director, said: “I am pleased that the project has reached this milestone; this scheme will bring major improvements to Cambridge station which will benefit not only our customers but the city as a whole.

“The extra platforms will improve train service performance at Cambridge, allow us more options and enable us to run our new Class 379 trains in longer formations at peak times.”

The new platforms are crucial to train operator National Express East Anglia's plans to improve train services and provide more seats for passengers on the West Anglia route in 2011. Following the introduction of a new fleet of Class 379 trains earlier this year, the new platforms will mean services can run as maximum 12-car services from December.

Today, services between Cambridge and the capital are very busy and the existing track layout in and around the station is constrained, especially at peak times. Adding two new 270m bi-directional platforms – numbered 7 and 8 – also means trains can arrive and depart in either direction, freeing up vital capacity on the existing platforms and making sure Cambridge can cater for additional rail services in the future.

Notes to editors

The next major stage of the project is set to take place on the weekend of October 1-2 when signalling, track and overhead line alterations will take place.

The work at the station is part of a project which will see the West Anglia line between Cambridge and London Liverpool Street station capable of running 12-car trains by December 2011.

Under this plan platforms are also being extended at:
- Cheshunt
- Broxbourne
- Sawbridgeworth
- Stansted Mountfitchet
- Stansted Airport (funded by BAA)

VIDEO: A high-definition time-lapse video showing the installation of the new footbridge is available. Please contact us if you would like to use it.

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 - South East route
020 3357 7969

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.

Follow us on Twitter: @networkrail
Visit our online newsroom: