• Only travel if you have to over the Early May bank holiday weekend
  • Passengers will benefit from a more reliable railway and better performing train journeys as a result of the work
  • Engineering works are taking place between Epsom and Dorking, Leatherhead and Effingham Junction, Whitton &     Hounslow and Staines
  • Critical workers are advised to plan their journeys in advance

Network Rail is reminding passengers to only travel by rail if they have to this bank holiday weekend as it carries out important maintenance and upgrades to help improve the railway’s reliability and train performance.

Only work that is necessary to the continued safe and reliable running of the network will take place so that freight services can continue to transport goods and the railway can support passengers who have to travel.

Passengers who don’t need to travel are asked to stay at home to protect the NHS and help save lives.

Between Saturday 9 and early morning of Monday 11 May, engineers will complete a number of track upgrades between Epsom, Leatherhead and Effingham Junction and between Staines and Whitton. This includes refurbishing the track and points (which allows trains to move tracks) in the Leatherhead area and replacing the track support over a bridge near Bookham.

At Feltham, the ballast (stones which supports the track) is being replaced to improve reliability and to prepare for the opening of a new depot for South Western Railway’s new rolling stock.

Other critical signalling works will take place from the morning of Sunday 10 until early morning of Monday 11 May between New Malden and Fulwell and between Staines,  Weybridge and Ascot.

These works will affect services on SWR and Southern; passengers who need to travel are advised to plan in advance and check with the train operator or National Rail Enquiries.

Mark Killick, Network Rail Wessex route director, said: “Over the early May bank holiday, we will carry out essential engineering projects to make sure our railway is able to support critical workers and for freight services to continue to move goods during the current crisis.

“Those needing to use the rail network should check before travelling and plan their journeys in advance. We urge the public to continue to follow the Government’s advice around the use of public transport.”

Vital improvement work will also be carried out between Fareham and Botley from Saturday 23 to Saturday 29 May when engineers will install almost a mile of new track.

During those seven days there will be no trains between Fareham and Eastleigh. Buses will replace South Western Railway (SWR) trains calling at Eastleigh, Hedge End, Botley and Fareham.  Great Western Railway (GWR) or Southern services will not be able to serve Eastleigh and Southampton Airport Parkway stations.

Passengers are advised to plan ahead and check before travelling.