Between 2021 and 2024 we’re upgrading signalling equipment controlled by our Feltham Area Signalling Centre and Wokingham Signal Box to improve reliability.
The Feltham Area Signalling Centre and Wokingham Signal Box jointly covers 80 miles of railway and 500 separate pieces of signalling equipment, on key areas of the South Western Railway (SWR) network including Feltham, Hounslow, Shepperton, Twickenham, Windsor & Eton Riverside and Wokingham.
The existing equipment – such as signals, the traffic light system for the railway, and track circuits, which tell signallers where trains are on the network – dates back to 1974 and is becoming harder and harder to maintain.
In a long-term programme that will run through to mid-2024, we’re renewing that equipment with a modern equivalent that will be more reliable. We’ll also deliver a number of enhancements to improve train performance, as well as renew or upgrade 13 level crossings.
Once all those renewals and upgrades are complete, we will then move control of that equipment from Feltham and Wokingham to Basingstoke and into the Wessex Rail Operating Centre (ROC).
We have designed a short survey to find out how we can keep passengers better informed about future line closures. The survey takes less than two minutes and we appreciate your feedback.
Our new signalling equipment uses digital technologies, which bring a number of benefits such as increased capacity for trains on the network, fewer delays, enhanced safety and lower costs.
In 2019 the Shepperton branch line, controlled by the Feltham Area Signalling Centre, became the first in the UK to use the Atkins ELIX system.
It’s just one example of how signalling is being transformed for passengers, business and freight operators under the rail industry’s Digital Railway programme.
What we’re doing
To install our new signalling equipment, we first have to conduct enabling works such as installing new cabling and signal posts. We then have to commission that equipment, which requires the railway to be closed to trains.
All of this work is done over a period of months and on different parts of the network.
The first phase of work, phase zero, was completed in June 2019 with the commissioning of new signalling equipment between Strawberry Hill and Shepperton.
Phase one, in the Strawberry Hill area, was completed in Easter 2021. Phase two, Virginia Water and Ascot, was completed in Easter 2022.
Phases three and four, in the Windsor, Staines, Feltham and Kew Bridge areas, are expected to be completed in August 2023.
Finally, phase five, in the Wokingham area, is expected to be complete in February 2024
Level Crossing Closures
Long term closures will be announced here. Please check back for updates.
Past line closures
Our teams completed two simultaneous closures as part of the ongoing resignalling scheme in February 2023.
Saturday 11 to Sunday 19 February 2023 – the line was closed between Windsor & Eton Riverside and Staines
During a 9-day closure from Windsor & Eton Riverside to Staines, which extended from Hounslow to Virginia Water on the last weekend, engineers continued to work on phase 4 and 5 of the wider FWRP.
Making the most of the line closure, our teams:
- Built new signal bases between Staines and Windsor & Eton Riverside
- Installed 55 new under and over track cables to link the recently installed digital technology
- Tested key railway components installed during previous blockades
- Inspected and completed regular maintenance on railway assets along the line.
Monday 13 to Friday 17 February 2023 – the line was closed between Reading and Bracknell/Guildford
Our engineers also closed the railway for 5-days between Reading and Bracknell/Guildford as phase 5 of the scheme began.
During this short closures our teams:
- Completed both signal piling and sheet piling at Winnersh station
- Dug new cable trenches and laid the foundations for new platform signal posts at Wokingham station
- Renewed Star Lane level crossing, replacing track, ballast and sleepers as well as relaying the road.
For more information or to get in touch with us, please contact us by visiting our contact us page or by calling our 24-hour national helpline on 03457 11 41 41.