Network Rail is reminding passengers that there will be no trains in or out of King’s Cross station for two weekends, as major work takes place as part of the £1.2billion East Coast Upgrade. There are also six further weekends where there will be a reduced service.
Good progress was made last weekend, when a reduced service was in place. During this time, Network Rail engineers moved cables, carried out work to the track and improved the drainage system.
Passengers are urged not to travel between Peterborough, Cambridge or Hertford North, and London King’s Cross, St Pancras International or Moorgate on Saturday, 25 and Sunday, 26 January and Saturday, 29 February and Sunday, 1 March, as no trains will be running on the East Coast Mainline into London.
On both weekends there will be a shuttle train service between Letchworth Garden City and King’s Lynn (extending to Hitchin on Saturday, 25 and Sunday, 26 January); and on Saturday, 29 February and Sunday, 1 March trains will be running between Peterborough and Biggleswade.
Over these weekends, Network Rail engineers will continue to relocate sections of the signalling system from King’s Cross to a state-of-the-art centre in York. This essential work can only be carried out safely when no trains are running. Network Rail will also continue with work to construct an additional platform and install new track at Stevenage station for Great Northern’s Moorgate services.
A reduced service will be in place on the following six weekends:
- Saturday 11 and Sunday 12 January
- Saturday 18 and Sunday 19 January
- Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 February
- Saturday 8 and Sunday 9 February
- Saturday 15 and Sunday 16 February
- Saturday 22 and Sunday 23 February
During this time, work will take place to upgrade the power supply and overhead line equipment in and around King’s Cross station. There will also be routine maintenance work, which means that no Thameslink or Great Northern services from Peterborough or Cambridge will run in or out of St Pancras or Moorgate. There will also be no trains between Peterborough, Hitchin or Stevenage and St Pancras or Moorgate.
Passengers are strongly advised to check on National Rail Enquiries or with their train operator before travelling on these weekends. They should also allow extra time for their journeys and reserve a seat where possible, as trains will be busy and may take longer than usual.
The East Coast Upgrade is the biggest investment into the line in a generation. Once complete, it will bring many benefits for the 20 million passengers who travel on the route each year, including faster journeys, more frequent services, a more reliable railway and an extra 10,000 seats per day.
Ed Akers, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “This work will bring improvements for the millions of passengers who use the East Coast Main Line each year, including improved connections, faster journeys, more choice and more seats.
“We apologise in advance for the disruption to services and the impact this will have on passengers whilst the essential work is carried out. We try to avoid disruption where possible, but unfortunately it is inevitable on an upgrade of this scale.
“We have given passengers as much notice as possible by announcing these dates back in October. We urge people to check before they travel and allow plenty of time.”
A spokesperson on behalf of train operators along the route said: “This is really important work that Network Rail is doing to meet the needs of passengers for years to come.
“Passengers should avoid travelling to London on the East Coast Main Line over the two weekends when there will be no services calling at King’s Cross station. There will also be no services from the East Coast Main Line into St Pancras or Moorgate.
“We are working hard to keep passengers moving and would strongly advise people to check before they travel.”