Train services resume in Devon after major signalling upgrade: Track work Devon main

Friday 22 Mar 2024

Train services resume in Devon after major signalling upgrade

Region & Route:
Wales & Western: Western
| Wales & Western

Trains are now running again between Plymouth and Totnes after Network Rail completed signal and track upgrades in the area. 

Following the successful installation of new signals in Cornwall earlier this month, the final stage of the programme saw new signals installed and track upgraded near Plympton, east of Plymouth, in an area often affected by delays.  

Six days of round-the-clock work was successfully completed in the early hours of this morning with Network Rail’s contractor, Siemens, bringing 21 more new signals into use, to be controlled at Plymouth signal box. 103 new signals are now in use across the region. 

Eight new sets of points – the mechanical systems that allow trains to move from one track to another and cross paths - were installed.  In addition, a redundant passing loop was removed and new track laid. New track was also laid near Ivybridge. 

Richard Evans, Network Rail programme manager, said: “This work concludes one of the biggest upgrades of the railway in the south west. 

“This has been a major step in ensuring we have a railway in the region that’s fit for the future with improved reliability and resilience. 

“We thank passengers for their patience while this work took place, they will also now benefit from improved real-time train information.” 

Mark Chorley, GWR West regional manager, said: “We would really like to thank customers for their patience while this signalling work affected train services this past week, and previously in Cornwall. 

“We are committed to providing fast, reliable, and consistent services to all the communities we serve, and the completion of this work will help us to do that for years to come. It is also great news that we can now resume our full sleeper services between Penzance and London Paddington, six days of the week.” 

Steve Mills, Siemens Mobility senior project manager, said: “Following on from the successful commissioning of the Cornwall phase last week, we are delighted to have now successfully completed the Devon phase. 

“Once again, our thanks go to everyone who has been part of the successful commissioning of the new signalling system which has been the culmination of many months of hard work.” 

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