Great Britain

Rail passengers warned of delays they could face over the May Bank Holiday period

Rail passengers are being urged to travel either side of the early May bank holiday as major improvements are made to key North West rail routes, including the West Coast main line to Scotland.

Millions of pounds is being invested to improve future journeys for passengers and freight on Network Rail’s North West route.

On days between Saturday 1 and Monday 3 May, West Coast main line track upgrades will take place on the railway from Preston to Lancaster, Oxenholme to Penrith and Crewe to Chester.

Sections of the Cumbrian Coast line will also be improved, while major resignalling work is happening at Trafford in Manchester.

Further afield, London Euston station will be closed for three days between May 1 and 3, and north of Carlisle in Scotland resignalling work will also see the West Coast main line closed at Carstairs.

Due to the scale of the railway upgrades over the long weekend, people are being advised to travel before and after the bank holiday on Friday 30 April and Tuesday 4 May.

Passengers on the days in between will have longer journeys, fewer available seats, and may need to use rail replacement buses.

Those needing to travel during the railway improvements should plan ahead by visiting: www.nationalrail.co.uk/westcoast

People should continue to follow Government guidance around the use of public transport and minimise the number of journeys they make where possible.

Phil James, Network Rail’s North West route director, said: “There is never an ideal time to shut the railway and we have worked hard to minimise disruption across the spring and summer.

“It is fantastic to see more passengers return to the railway and we want to make journeys as easy as possible for those travelling over bank holidays. We are carefully balancing that with the need to carry out essential railway improvements and maintenance to provide a safe and reliable railway for the future.

“I’d urge people to follow Government advice and minimise travel. If you do need to make a journey, the least disruptive time will be before and after the work takes place on Friday 30 April and Tuesday 4 May.”

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