Monday 12 Oct 2020
Passengers reminded not to travel to or from London King’s Cross this weekend as vital work continues on the £1.2billion East Coast Upgrade
Network Rail and train operators on the East Coast Main Line are reminding passengers not to travel to or from London King’s Cross, or on Thameslink services via Finsbury Park this weekend (Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October), as essential work continues on the East Coast Upgrade to bring more reliable journeys.
The £1.2billion East Coast Upgrade will transform journeys on the East Coast Main Line, bringing more services and a more reliable railway for passengers. It will improve connectivity between London, the North and Scotland.
On Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October, Network Rail engineers will carry out vital work on the latest stage of the project, which includes replacing the overhead wires in and around King’s Cross and testing the new signalling system. This work can only be carried out safely when there are no trains in the area.
Passengers are strongly advised not to travel to or from London over the weekend. Those who do need to should check their journeys via National Rail Enquiries, at EastCoastUpgrade.co.uk or with their train operator. People should also allow plenty of time as they will need to change trains or use replacement buses, which are expected to be in high demand.
The following changes to services will be in place on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October:
- LNER services to/from the north will start/end at St Neots, south of Peterborough. Rail replacement coaches will run between St Neots and Bedford, where passengers can use Thameslink or East Midlands Railway services to/from London St Pancras. Passengers travelling with LNER must have a seat reservation.
- Grand Central will have no services operating throughout the weekend. The 17:30 Sunderland to King’s Cross service on Friday 16 October and the 08:27 King’s Cross to Sunderland service on Monday 19 October will also not run.
- Hull Trains will operate a limited service between Hull and St Pancras International. There will be two northbound and two southbound services on both Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October.
- No Great Northern or Thameslink services will run into King’s Cross, Moorgate or St Pancras International via Finsbury Park. Limited replacement bus services will run between Potters Bar and St Albans, where passengers can connect with Thameslink services to/from London St Pancras; and between Potters Bar and Oakwood to connect with London Underground services to/from central London. Potters Bar Station and these alternative arrangements offer step-free access.
- On the Hertford North line, all stations between Gordon Hill and Alexandra Palace will be served by a bus replacement service to/from Turnpike Lane to connect with London Underground services to/from central London. Gordon Hill and Turnpike Lane do not offer step-free access.
Passengers are reminded that they must wear a face covering on public transport, unless they are exempt, or they could be fined up to £6,400.
Ed Akers, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “We’re carrying out essential work over the weekend to test the new signalling system and replace the power lines in and around King’s Cross. We can only do this safely by stopping trains coming in and out of the station.
“Passengers are advised not to travel to London over the weekend, but those who do need to should check their journeys via National Rail Enquiries, at EastCoastUpgrade.co.uk or with their train operator and allow plenty of time.
“We’re making good progress on the East Coast Upgrade, which will bring a more modern, reliable railway for passengers, and we would like to thank people for their continued patience.”
A spokesperson on behalf of train operators on the route, said: “We’re asking people not to travel to or from London on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October whilst this essential work is carried out at King’s Cross.
“Replacement bus services will be running for those who must travel, but these are expected to be busy and journeys will take significantly longer. We would like to thank our passengers for their patience whilst progress is made on the East Coast Upgrade.”
Further work is planned over the coming months, including a weekend closure at London King’s Cross on Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 November and an extended closure between Christmas and the New Year. Additional dates where there will be full and partial closures have been announced up to June 2021. Passengers can find out more so they can plan their journeys in advance at: eastcoastupgrade.co.uk/the-programme/
Notes to Editors
Current key dates for the upgrade work:
(these are subject to change and passengers will be kept informed of any changes):
- Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 November – Reduced service into King’s Cross Station to continue work on overhead lines and on signals
- Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 November – King’s Cross Station closed for overhead line works. No services to or from King’s Cross Station or to or from St Pancras Station via Finsbury Park
- Saturday 28 and Sunday 29 November – Reduced service into and out of King’s Cross Station for work on track and overhead lines
- Thursday 24 December (Christmas Eve) – An amended timetable will be in place
- Friday 25 and Saturday 26 December (Christmas Day and Boxing Day) – No services along the entire route
- Sunday 27 through to Wednesday 30 December – No services to or from King’s Cross Station
- Thursday 31 December through to Sunday 3 January – An amended timetable will operate
- A number of weekends in January will see an amended timetable into and out of London King’s Cross. We advise customers to check before they travel
- Saturday 30 and Sunday 31 January – No services to or from King’s Cross Station, or to or from St Pancras Station via Finsbury Park
- Friday 26, Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 February – No services to or from King’s Cross Station or to or from St Pancras Station via Finsbury Park
- Monday 1 March through to Friday 4 June – A temporary, dedicated timetable will operate at King’s Cross station to support the relaying of the redesigned track layout with reduced services operating. At peak times such as between 8-9AM on weekdays, ten trains per hour will arrive at King’s Cross, two fewer than operate today, with a reduced impact at less busy times when fewer trains usually operate
- Friday 23, Saturday 24 and Sunday 25 April – No services to or from King’s Cross Station for all three days or to or from St Pancras Station via Finsbury Park on the Saturday and Sunday
- Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 June – No services to or from King’s Cross Station or to or from St Pancras Station via Finsbury Park
Engineering work between Grantham, Peterborough and Stamford Stations for work at Werrington:
- Nine-day closure period from Saturday 16 January to Sunday 24 January 2021 – Limited services between Grantham and Peterborough, with many passengers needing to transfer to rail replacement services while work continues on a new section of railway at Werrington which will free up space for extra passenger services
- Three-day closure period in mid-2021 – No services between Stamford and Peterborough, no services between Grantham and Peterborough on the second two days, with many passengers needing to transfer to rail replacement services to complete the new infrastructure at Werrington
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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.