Electrification work on the railway line between London and Cardiff has reached South Wales.
Network Rail is urging passengers in South Wales to plan their journeys in advance as work continues to electrify the South Wales Main Line.
Once complete, the major modernisation work will enable Intercity Express Trains to run between London and Cardiff on electricity, reducing journey times for passengers and creating a quieter environment for lineside neighbours.
Buses will replace trains between Bristol Parkway station and Cardiff Central station as engineers will work around the clock on the railway to continue installing the overhead line equipment.
Further work is planned on weekends throughout the summer and autumn months with buses replacing trains on the following dates:
- Sunday 25 August (until 14:00, when coaches replace trains between Bristol Parkway and Newport instead)
- Sunday 8 September (until 14:00)
- Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 September
- Sunday 22 September (until 14:00)
- Sunday 29 September (until 14:00)
- Sunday 13 October (until 14:00)
- Sunday 20 October (until 14:00)
Bill Kelly, route director for Network Rail Wales and Borders, said:
“Electrification reaching Cardiff is a significant milestone as we continue to deliver the biggest upgrade to the Great Western mainline since it was built more than 175 years ago. We would like to thank passengers and our lineside neighbours for bearing with us as we continue to deliver this major upgrade project.
“We are working closely with our train operating partners to minimise disruption, but we strongly advise passengers to plan ahead.”
Colin Lea, customer experience director for Transport for Wales said:
“This vital investment work by our partners in Network Rail will lead to faster journey times between South Wales and Bristol and London by the end of the year.
“Whilst the work reaches its final phases, there will be some disruption affecting our customers connecting between South Wales and Bristol.
“We are working closely with Network Rail and GWR to keep this to a minimum, but those travelling on the affected dates should check before travelling and stay fully informed about any planned changes.”
David Bailey, customer service manager South Wales for GWR said:
“In December we plan to implement the biggest timetable change on this network since 1976, enabling us to take advantage of the full benefits that new Intercity Express Trains are bringing; delivering more seats, and more frequent and quicker journeys.
“In order to help achieve this however Network Rail will be working to continuing the electrification of the line over the coming Sundays, and we would like to thank passengers in advance for their patience.”