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Trains temporarily suspended from station - hours after line reopens following 18 month closure

PUBLISHED: 13:57 24 February 2020 | UPDATED: 16:56 24 February 2020

Berney Arms train station. Picture: James Bass

Berney Arms train station. Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk Photographic © 2010

Trains were temporarily suspended from a Norfolk train station on Monday - on the first day it reopened after an 18-month hiatus.

Berney Arms train station, which has been out of action since 2018.  Picture: James BassBerney Arms train station, which has been out of action since 2018. Picture: James Bass

Trains were temporarily suspended from a Norfolk train station on Monday - on the first day it reopened after an 18-month hiatus.

Passenger services between Reedham and Yarmouth, which serve the remote Berney Arms station, were supposed to begin again on Monday after resignalling works were completed after more than a year.

However, the 7.36am Norwich to Great Yarmouth train was diverted from Brundall, failing to stop at Cantley, Reedham Norfolk or Berney Arms.

According to Greater Anglia, the service was diverted because of additional safety checks on the Berney Arms track, given that "this was the first time any of the new trains would run through this particular station."

Greater Anglia has now confirmed the service is back up and running - with the 11.36am service passing through as planned - though a server error on the website maintained that "services from Berney Arms have been suspended until further notice", creating confusion among rail users as to whether their scheduled journeys would go ahead.

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Richard Clinnick, head of news at RAIL Magazine, criticised Network Rail's time delay in completing the re-signalling process along the route, as well as "trackwork planned for the summer".

"Having closed in October 2018 for a 'six-month period', the Berney Arms route from Reedham to Great Yarmouth welcomed its first passenger train back today. Only 10 months late," he said on Twitter.

He also criticised the lack of transparency as to why the station has been closed for 16 months.

But reflecting on the reopening of Berney Arms station, as well as other renewal works on the Wherry Lines, Jamie Burles, Greater Anglia's managing director, said: "This major upgrade will provide huge benefits to those who travel on the line.

"We are pleased that Wherry Line users will now be able to benefit from some of the newest trains and signalling equipment in the country.

"We would like to thank customers for their patience while this essential work was carried out."

The Berney Arms station, set in the middle of Norfolk Broad marshland, is one of the most remote and least-used train stations in the country.

The small number of services scheduled to stop there have done so only on request since 2015.


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