Network Rail is urging passengers travelling between Scunthorpe and Doncaster to check before they travel as essential repair work following a landslip begins tomorrow.

The landslip was discovered last Friday between Scunthorpe and Althorpe whilst routine maintenance inspections were being carried out. Since it was found, Network Rail teams have been on site monitoring the area so that a reduced passenger service could continue on one line.

Network Rail has also reopened another line via Brigg for freight services to allow them to divert around the area. This means that they can continue transporting vital supplies such as food, medication and fuel across the country.

Key repairs need to take place to allow a full service to resume. Between Thursday, 18 June and Thursday, 25 June, Network Rail workers will carry out work to stabilise the embankment, which they will do by installing steel piles.

To allow this work to take place safely, no train services will be able to run on this portion of the line during this time. This means the following changes to services:

  • Northern services will not run between Scunthorpe and Doncaster. Bus replacement services will be in place, calling at all stations on the line.
  • TransPennine Express services will continue between Cleethorpes and Scunthorpe and between Doncaster and Manchester Piccadilly. There will be rail replacement services in place between Scunthorpe and Doncaster.

Passengers are reminded that they should continue to avoid public transport where possible. Those who must travel should check before travelling via National Rail Enquiries or with their train operators.

Passengers are also reminded that face coverings are mandatory on public transport to protect themselves and others, however, some passengers are exempt, including young children, disabled people and those with breathing difficulties.

Network Rail continues to investigate the cause of the landslip. These incidents often occur when the ground becomes saturated with water after heavy rain, causing soil, rocks and earth to become loose and unstable.  

Matt Rice, Route Director the North and East Route, said: “Since the landslip was discovered on Friday, our teams have worked around the clock to monitor the area and assess what is needed to repair the damage – all while keeping passengers moving safely on the line between Doncaster and Cleethorpes and by reopening another line to allow freight trains to divert around the site.

“Those site assessments are now complete and the safest, quickest way to repair the damage is to close the line for seven days to allow 24 hours a day work to take place that will see the line returned to full speed and full capacity by 25 June.”

Steve Hopkinson, Regional Director at Northern, said: “Due to vital repairs being carried out between Scunthorpe and Doncaster we have had to make emergency changes to our timetable.

“From Thursday (18 June) rail replacement buses will operate between the two towns to help people get where they need to be while the repairs are completed.

“Social distancing measures will be in place on the buses and customers should wear a face covering unless they are exempt.

“We really appreciate the patience and understanding of our customers during this difficult time and we're working closely with Network Rail to get this issue resolved as soon as possible.”