Network Rail is advising passengers that buses will replace trains between Aberdeen and Dundee on Sunday April 28 as engineers commission the first phase of signalling improvements on the line.

Work will be continuous from Saturday night to Monday morning as engineers bring into service new LED signals and axle-counters. Newtonhill signal box will be de-commissioned and control of the signalling section will be relocated to Aberdeen.

This will deliver increased capacity on the line ahead of the May timetable change and enable more trains to move through the area safely and more efficiently.

Part of a wider £13.5m project between Aberdeen and Stonehaven to increase capacity, the work involved track and signalling improvements and the installation of a new track crossover at Craiginches.

The new crossover, to be brought into service as part of the phase 2 commissioning work later in the programme, will reduce the number of freight trains travelling north towards Aberdeen station and help create additional options for passenger services into the city.

This latest investment in the railway in the North East will support improvements to rail freight operations, provide additional capacity for the development of local services between Aberdeen and Stonehaven and improve the operational capacity within Aberdeen station.

Jeremy Spence, Network Rail programme manager said: “These works will deliver the extra capacity needed to support further changes to local services between Aberdeen and Stonehaven as well as improvements to rail freight operations in the area – which benefits both passengers and business.

“Aberdeen’s rail network is seeing huge levels of investment that will help to create more opportunities for commuting and leisure travel and help grow the economy and put passengers and freight users first.”

Passengers are advised to plan ahead and check their journey via national rail enquiries www.nationalrail.co.uk or with their train operator.