Easter upgrades: the West Coast Main Line

We’re enabling faster journeys on one of Britain’s most important railway lines this Easter.

Work on the West Coast Main Line - stretching from London to Glasgow – will lead to better train services for passengers and a more reliable railway.

Upgrades will range from tunnel strengthening and bridge renovation to track renewal and points improvements.

Work is also taking place to prepare for High Speed Two (HS2) – a major new railway line that will significantly increase capacity.

Across Britain, a 13,800-strong workforce will work around the clock this Easter to keep the railway open and deliver more reliable infrastructure, improved facilities and services for passengers.

It's part of our five-year railway upgrade plan that will improve passenger journeys in the months and years ahead.

The West Coast Main Line connects London with Glasgow

Building a better railway

In the last 20 years, the number of people travelling on the rail network has doubled. The rail network, our stations and our platforms now deal with more passengers than they were ever designed for.

Our investment plan is entering its final phases and better, more frequent and faster journeys for hundreds of thousands of people are now months away for some, as the benefits start to come to fruition.

What’s the West Coast Main Line?

Supporting major cities, it’s one of the most important rail corridors in Britain and the busiest mixed-use railway in Europe. It’s part of the London North Western (LNW) route, which runs from London Euston through the West Midlands, the North West of England and Cumbria. It then joins Scotland at Gretna.

Work between London Euston, Rugby, Milton Keynes and Birmingham International will include:

  • Primrose Hill tunnel strengthening
  • Preparation for HS2, Britain’s new high-speed railway
  • Work to improve points at Willesden Junction
  • Track foundation improvements between High Wycombe and Leighton Buzzard
  • Maintenance work to Bletchley railway flyover
  • Preparation for the future East West Rail link between Bicester and Bedford
  • Track renewal between Till Hill and Canley near Coventry

Work between Runcorn, Carlisle and Glasgow Central will include:

  • Railway track renewal at Golborne, Coppull Hall in Chorley, and Blainscough
  • Renewal of overhead electric lines at Acton Grange in Warrington
  • Bridge renovation and strengthening at Coppull Moor Lane in Chorley
  • Work to improve points and rail replacement at Milnthorpe in South Lakeland
  • Track foundation improvements and work to overhead electric lines at Carnforth
  • Track foundation improvements at Upperby in Carlisle

Work on Merseyside and in Greater Manchester will include:

  • Merseyrail platform upgrades - we will remodel station platforms and track between Bidston and West Kirby on the Merseyrail network to prepare for the arrival of state-of-the-art trains in 2020.
  • Manchester Victoria to Stalybridge - continuing work on the electrification project between Manchester Victoria and Stalybridge, with work to install telecommunications cabling and overhead line equipment.