East Coast Main Line upgrade to disrupt trains between St Neots and Bedford

No trains in or out of London King’s Cross Station on October weekend as Network Rail makes progress on East Coast Upgrade

Friday, 25th September 2020, 2:52 pm
Updated Friday, 25th September 2020, 2:56 pm

Network Rail and train operators on the East Coast Main Line are urging passengers not to travel to or from London King’s Cross, or on Thameslink services to or from St Pancras International via Finsbury Park for one weekend in October as vital work continues on the East Coast Upgrade.

The work will be carried out on Saturday, October 17, and Sunday, October 18.

The £1.2billion East Coast Upgrade will transform journeys between London, the North and Scotland.

No trains in or out of London King’s Cross Station on October weekend as Network Rail makes progress on £1.2billion East Coast Upgrade (C) Network Rail
No trains in or out of London King’s Cross Station on October weekend as Network Rail makes progress on £1.2billion East Coast Upgrade (C) Network Rail

It will make way for more services on the East Coast Main Line to meet future passenger demand and bring a more reliable railway.

Over the weekend, Network Rail engineers will carry out essential work to test the new signalling system and replace overhead wires in and around King’s Cross Station.

This latest stage in the project will bring more reliable journeys for passengers, but it can only be carried out safely when there are no trains in the area.

The following changes to services will be in place on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October:

- LNER services to/from the north will start/end at St Neots, south of Peterborough. Rail replacement coaches will run between St Neots and Bedford, where passengers can use Thameslink or East Midlands Railway services to/from London St Pancras.

- No Great Northern or Thameslink services will run into King’s Cross, Moorgate or St Pancras International via Finsbury Park.

- Limited replacement bus services will run between Potters Bar and St Albans, where passengers can connect with Thameslink services to/from London St Pancras. Buses will also run between Potters Bar and Cockfosters to connect with London Underground services to/from central London.

Passengers are strongly advised not to travel to or from London over the weekend.

Those who have an essential need to do so should check their journeys via National Rail Enquiries, at EastCoastUpgrade.co.uk or with their train operator. They should also allow plenty of time as replacement services are expected to be busy.

Passengers are reminded that they must wear a face covering on public transport, unless they are exempt, or they could be fined up to £3,200.

Ed Akers, principal programme sponsor for Network Rail, said: “We’re making good progress on the project to improve access into and out of King’s Cross.

"Unfortunately, while a lot of the work is being carried out with no disruption to passengers, some key activities just cannot be done safely while trains are running.

“On Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October we need to make changes to the signalling and power lines, and we can only do that by stopping trains coming in and out of the station.

"We’re advising people not to travel to London over the weekend, but those who do need to should check their journeys via National Rail Enquiries, at EastCoastUpgrade.co.uk or with their train operator and allow plenty of time.

“Thank you for your continued patience as we progress with these vital improvements.”

A spokesperson on behalf of train operators on the route, said: “We would like to thank our passengers for their patience whilst this essential work is carried out in and around King’s Cross over the weekend.

“We are asking people not to travel to or from London on Saturday 17 and Sunday 18 October. Replacement services will be running for those making essential journeys, but these are expected to be busy and journeys will take significantly longer.”