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Driving home for Christmas? 10-day festive closure on part of train track between Norwich and London

Stock photo of Greater Anglia train. Pic: Sonya Duncan.

Stock photo of Greater Anglia train. Pic: Sonya Duncan.

ARCHANT EASTERN DAILY PRESS (01603) 772434

No trains will run on a section of the rail line between Norwich and London Liverpool Street for 10 days over Christmas, rail bosses have announced.

And the £250m project to upgrade six miles of overhead wire means passengers will also face disruption at weekends from October to December, says Network Rail.

Network Rail says that, once the work, at Ilford, is complete, the stretch from Chelmsford to Seven Kings will have had new wire installed, which will mean fewer delays.

But, in the meantime, it will cause difficulties for people travelling at weekends in the run-up to Christmas and over the festive period itself.

Trains will not run between Liverpool Street and Ingatestone on a number of weekends and from December 23 until January 1, with buses connecting passenger with the London Underground Central line connection with Newbury Park.

Jamie Burles, Greater Anglia managing director, said: “We will make sure that customers can complete their journeys during all periods of engineering works, even if part of it is by bus. Our rail replacement bus service operates very smoothly, with extra staff on hand to direct customers to the right bus.

“These works are crucial if we are to get the modern railway we need in East Anglia and combined with the new trains we’re getting to replace every single train on our network, should lead to a transformed railway for us all.”

Meliha Duymaz, Network Rail’s route managing director for Anglia, said: “Our investment programme in our vital railway infrastructure on this very busy route continues as part of our Railway Upgrade Plan.

“While there will be short-term disruption, the benefits for passengers are real and will last for decades as modern, more reliable infrastructure is installed and preparations made for the introduction of news services and new trains on the Elizabeth line.”

Network Rail says the wires and structures that are currently in place were installed in the 1950s and the system is one of the oldest in the country.

They say that, when the weather gets hot, the wires sag and speed restrictions have to be imposed to protect them from damage by trains, but the new wires are controlled by a system of weights, to keep them taut at all times, so trains can pass at their normal speed meaning fewer delays.

Work will also take place at TfL Rail stations between Brentwood and Stratford as part of the Crossrail programme.

There are some weekends without any works. Passengers should check how their journey will be affected at www.nationalrail.co.uk, www.tfl.gov.uk or with their train operator ahead of travelling.

What will it mean?

Greater Anglia

Saturday, October 21 to Sunday, October 22

A rail replacement bus service will run between Ingatestone/ Wickford and Newbury Park (London Underground) all weekend. Tickets will be accepted on the Central line from Newbury Park to/ from London Liverpool Street on both days. c2c ticket acceptance will also be offered on the Southend Branch Line.

Sunday, October 29

A rail replacement bus service will run between Ingatestone/ Billericay and Newbury Park (London Underground). Tickets will be accepted on the Central line from Newbury Park to/ from London Liverpool Street. Please note that trains will terminate at Shenfield for passengers for local stations, however London bound passengers should disembark at Ingatestone/ Billericay for bus to Newbury Park and onward travel to London.

Saturday, November 4 to Sunday November 5

A rail replacement bus service will run between Ingatestone/ Billericay and Newbury Park (London Underground). Tickets will be accepted on the Central line from Newbury Park to/ from London Liverpool Street. c2c ticket acceptance will also be offered on the Southend Branch Line. Please note that trains will terminate at Shenfield for passengers for local stations, however London bound passengers should disembark at Ingatestone/ Billericay for bus to Newbury Park and onward travel to London.

On Sunday, until 1.30pm all trains terminating at Ingatestone and Billericay with onward travel by rail replacement to Newbury Park. After 1.30pm on Sunday trains will terminate at Shenfield for local passengers only.

Saturday, November 18

A rail replacement service will run between Ingatestone/ Billericay and Newbury Park (London Underground). Tickets will be accepted on the Central line from Newbury Park to/ from London Liverpool Street. Please note that trains will terminate at Shenfield for passengers for local stations, however London bound passengers should disembark at Ingatestone/ Billericay for bus to Newbury Park and onward travel to London.

Sunday, November 19

Until 11.25am, a rail replacement bus service will run between Colchester/Billericay and Newbury Park. A train shuttle service will operate on the Braintree and Sudbury Lines, connecting into rail replacement services to Newbury Park.

After 11.25am trains will resume from Colchester to Ingatestone and a rail replacement bus service will between Ingatestone/ Billericay and Newbury Park (London Underground). Tickets will be accepted on the Central line from Newbury Park to/ from London Liverpool Street on both days. Please note that trains will terminate at Shenfield for passengers for local stations, however London bound passengers should disembark at Ingatestone/ Billericay for bus to Newbury Park and onward travel to London.

Christmas (December 23 - January 1)

A rail replacement service will run between Ingatestone/ Billericay and Newbury Park (London Underground). Tickets will be accepted on the Central line from Newbury Park to/ from London Liverpool Street.

TfL Rail

Saturday, September 23 and Saturday, October 7

There will be no service between Liverpool Street and Stratford. Customers are advised to use the Central line instead.

Saturday, October 21 and Sunday 22 October

There will be no service between Stratford and Shenfield. Rail replacement buses will run:

Stratford – Forest Gate – Manor Park – Ilford – Seven Kings – Goodmayes – Chadwell Heath – Romford

Newbury Park (for the Central line) – Chadwell Heath - Romford – Gidea Park – Harold Wood – Brentwood – Shenfield

Saturday, October 28 and Sunday, October 29

On Saturday, trains will not stop at Maryland, Forest Gate or Manor Park. On Sunday, there will be no service between Liverpool Street and Ilford. Customers are advised to use local bus routes instead.

Saturday, November 4 and Sunday, November 5

There will be no service between Liverpool Street and Shenfield. Rail replacement buses will run:

Stratford – Forest Gate – Manor Park – Ilford – Seven Kings – Goodmayes – Chadwell Heath – Romford

Newbury Park (for the Central line) – Chadwell Heath - Romford – Gidea Park – Harold Wood – Brentwood – Shenfield

Saturday, November 18 and Sunday, November 19

There will be no service between Liverpool Street and Romford. Rail replacement buses will run:

Stratford – Forest Gate – Manor Park – Ilford – Seven Kings – Goodmayes – Chadwell Heath – Romford

Saturdays, November 25 and Saturday, December 2, 9 and 16

There will be no service between Chadwell Heath and Shenfield. Rail replacement buses will run:

Chadwell Heath - Romford – Gidea Park – Harold Wood – Brentwood – Shenfield

Christmas

There will be no service between Shenfield and London Liverpool Street from Saturday, December 23 until Monday, January 1.

Rail replacement buses will run (except from 11pm on Christmas Eve and all day on Christmas Day):

Stratford – Forest Gate – Manor Park – Ilford –Seven Kings – Goodmayes – Chadwell Heath – Romford

Newbury Park (for the Central line) – Chadwell Heath - Romford – Gidea Park – Harold Wood – Brentwood – Shenfield

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