Wessex improvement programme

There are more than 230 million passenger journeys on the railway to and from London Waterloo every year – an increase of over 100 per cent in 20 years. Investment will transform the station and improve passenger services

We’re investing £800m to improve and increase the capacity of London Waterloo, Britain’s busiest station and one of the country’s most used railways, with a programme of works from 2016 to 2018.

Work on the Waterloo and South West Upgrade started in April 2016 when we began developing the former Waterloo International Terminal for domestic services. The project is expected to be completed by December 2018 and will provide the biggest package of improvements to London Waterloo since the 1930s.

Benefits for millions of passengers

At peak times, a train arrives or departs almost every minute and major upgrade and improvement works are essential to help more people travel into and out of London Waterloo.

These works, part of our Railway Upgrade Plan, will deliver a 30 per cent increase in capacity during the morning and evening peaks, and better passenger facilities.

What the work involves

  • Rebuilding the former Waterloo International Terminal and bringing platforms 20–24 back into use with modern facilities, new track and signalling, and a layout that meets the needs of thousands of passengers.
  • Extending platforms 1–4 to allow longer 10-carriage trains – instead of the current eight-carriage ones – to run to London suburban stations for the first time in the busiest periods. The platforms at Ascot, Bracknell, Camberley, Chertsey, Egham, Feltham, Martins Heron, Sunningdale, Virginia Water and Wokingham will also be extended to accommodate these longer trains.
  • Creating a spacious, modern and accessible station concourse near platforms 20–24.
  • Introducing a fleet of 150 air-conditioned carriages with improved facilities, including better on-board train information, free passenger Wi-Fi and open gangways to allow passengers to see through and walk the length of the train much more easily.


Travel arrangements

Some disruption is inevitable, but we’re working closely with the Department for Transport, South West Trains, Transport for London, Wessex Capacity Alliance (Network Rail, Colas Rail, Skanska, Mott MacDonald and AECOM) and other organisations to develop detailed travel advice and options for all passengers.

Investment and improvements along the Wessex line will be funded by the Department for Transport and delivered by Network Rail in partnership with South West Trains, Wessex Capacity Alliance and Siemens.