Wednesday 24 Jul 2019
South Wales passengers urged to check before they travel as electrification work continues
Network Rail is urging passengers in South Wales to plan their journeys in advance as work continues to electrify the South Wales Main Line.
Once complete, the major modernisation work will enable Intercity Express Trains to run between London and Cardiff on electricity, reducing journey times for passengers and creating a quieter environment for lineside neighbours.
On Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 July, buses will replace trains between Bristol Parkway station and Cardiff Central station as engineers will work around the clock on the railway to continue installing the overhead line equipment.
Further work is planned on weekends throughout the summer and autumn months with buses replacing trains on the following dates:
- Sunday 25 August (until 14:00, when coaches replace trains between Bristol Parkway and Newport instead)
- Sunday 8 September (until 14:00)
- Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 September
- Sunday 22 September (until 14:00)
- Sunday 29 September (until 14:00)
- Sunday 13 October (until 14:00)
- Sunday 20 October (until 14:00)
Bill Kelly, route director for Network Rail Wales and Borders, said: “Electrification reaching Cardiff is a significant milestone as we continue to deliver the biggest upgrade to the Great Western mainline since it was built more than 175 years ago. We would like to thank passengers and our lineside neighbours for bearing with us as we continue to deliver this major upgrade project.
“We are working closely with our train operating partners to minimise disruption, but we strongly advise passengers to plan ahead.”
Colin Lea, customer experience director for Transport for Wales said: “This vital investment work by our partners in Network Rail will lead to faster journey times between South Wales and Bristol and London by the end of the year.
“Whilst the work reaches its final phases, there will be some disruption affecting our customers connecting between South Wales and Bristol.
“We are working closely with Network Rail and GWR to keep this to a minimum, but those travelling on the affected dates should check before travelling and stay fully informed about any planned changes.”
David Bailey, customer service manager south Wales for GWR said: “In December we plan to implement the biggest timetable change on this network since 1976, enabling us to take advantage of the full benefits that new Intercity Express Trains are bringing; delivering more seats, and more frequent and quicker journeys.
“In order to help achieve this however Network Rail will be working to continuing the electrification of the line over the coming Sundays, and we would like to thank passengers in advance for their patience.”
Passengers / community members
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Network Rail press office - Nichole Sarra
Senior Communications Manager (Wales)
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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.