Passengers in South Wales advised to check before they travel ahead of railway upgrade work: Work will take place on the eastern approach to Cardiff Central Station between August and October

Monday 17 Jul 2017

Passengers in South Wales advised to check before they travel ahead of railway upgrade work


Rail passengers are being urged to check before they travel ahead of essential electrification work in Cardiff, which forms part of Network Rail’s Railway Upgrade Plan for Wales.

Services between Newport and Cardiff will be reduced between 19 August and 3 September 2017, with rail replacement buses in operation between the two cities over the August bank holiday.  

Travelling over the bank holiday weekend?

  • There will be no trains between Newport and Cardiff over the August bank holiday weekend (Saturday 26 August – 13:00 on Monday 28 August), with replacement buses running instead.
  • Services will continue to run between Swansea and Cardiff.
  • Services to London will start at Newport and will be diverted via Patchway instead of Bristol Parkway due to upgrade work.

From 23 September to 29 October 2017, a second phase of electrification work on the eastern approach to Cardiff Central station will see services between Cardiff and Newport reduced during the week and at weekends, with some rail replacement bus services in operation. Over the six weekends, the Severn Tunnel will also be closed for annual maintenance, so there will be reduced services between Cardiff and London Paddington, with a diversion through Gloucester.

Network Rail will host a public drop-in event at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Bute Terrace, in Cardiff city centre, on Monday 24 July between 3pm and 7pm. Members of the project team will be on hand to answer any questions about the works and no appointments are necessary.

Andy Thomas, Network Rail route managing director for Wales, said: “We recognise that passengers will face some disruption, and we understand how frustrating this can be but this work is essential in preparing Cardiff for new electric trains as part of our Railway Upgrade Plan.

“We would like to thank passengers for their ongoing patience as we undertake this essential engineering work. We will continue to work closely with our partners at Arriva Trains Wales and Great Western Railway to ensure passengers are able to get to where they need to be during this period.”

GWR’s development manager Wales Mark Youngman said:

“The first Intercity Express Train to enter passenger service is just a number of months away; providing over a fifth more seats per train and, with the completion of electrification, quicker journeys.

“The work next month is a key part of Network Rail’s upgrade plans, helping GWR to take full advantage of our new fleet and the greatest step-change in experience for our passengers in a generation.”

Lynne Milligan, customer services director at Arriva Trains Wales said: “We will be working closely with our partners in Network Rail to ensure our customers experience as little disruption to their journeys as possible whilst this essential work goes ahead. All customers should look to plan ahead before travel so they are aware whether there is an impact on their journey.”

Passengers are urged to ‘check before they travel’ as journeys will be less frequent and may be longer during these works.

More detail on the diverted rail services and replacement buses as well as up to date journey information can be found via or by calling Travel Line Cymru on 0800 464 0000.

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 - Bryony Parry
Communications Executive

About Network Rail

Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain's railway - the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.65bn journeys by rail every year and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We employ 36,000 people across Britain and work round-the-clock, each and every day, to provide a safe, reliable railway.

About the Railway Upgrade Plan

The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail's investment plan for Britain's railways. It makes up two-thirds of Network Rail's £40bn spending priorities for the five years to 2019 and represents the biggest sustained programme of rail modernisation since the Victoria era. It is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to the tremendous growth Britain's railways continue to experience; passenger numbers have doubled in the past 20 years and are set to double again over the next 25 years - so we need to continue to invest in building a bigger, better railway. For passengers, that means:

  • longer, faster more frequent trains;
  • better, more reliable infrastructure; and
  • better facilities for passengers, especially at stations.

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