Tuesday 22 Dec 2020
Network Rail workers give up Christmas with their families to carry out key work on Midland Main Line Upgrade
Around 50 Network Rail workers are giving up their Christmases to carry out vital work as part of the £1.5billion Midland Main Line Upgrade.
Between Christmas Day and Sunday, 27 December, Network Rail teams will carry out work to remove equipment which is no longer needed from the tracks between Wellingborough and Kettering. Over 300 units will be removed, which will create a more reliable railway through reducing the likelihood of track faults, which causes disruption for passengers.
The work will also see a disused building next to the railway demolished. The building is near overhead line equipment and removing it will make it safer and easier for workers to carry out inspections of the electric wires. This means they can fix any faults with this equipment more quickly, reducing delays for passengers. Demolishing the building will also mean Network Rail no longer has to maintain it, which will save taxpayers money.
The Midland Main Line Upgrade is the biggest investment into the line since its construction in the Victorian era and will bring significant benefits for passengers, such as access to faster journeys with more seats available on board more environmentally friendly trains.
Tom Donnelly is a Project Manager for Network Rail and will be working on this project over Christmas. Tom is based in Derby and joined Network Rail five years ago as a Project Management Graduate.
He said: “Christmas is going to be quite different this year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, but I’ll still be able to spend some time with my family over the festive period.
"I’m happy to be working on this vital project over Christmas, which will help work on the Midland Main Line Upgrade to progress, as well as to create a more reliable railway for passengers.
“My role will be to manage the progress of the work and deal with any issues which arise to make sure that the work completes on time. I look forward to passengers benefitting from this work and I’m proud to be making a positive difference to their journeys.”
As there are no timetabled services on Christmas Day and Boxing Day on this part of the railway, Network Rail uses this opportunity to carry out major work and avoid disruption for passengers at busier times.
People must follow the latest Government guidance over the Christmas period and stay at home or stay local to help tackle the spread of COVID-19. Those who do have to travel over the festive period are strongly advised to check their journey via National Rail Enquiries or with their train operator.
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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.