DO NOT TRAVEL: Warning ahead of next stage of London King’s Cross upgrade

do not travel
Credit: Network rail

Network Rail, and train operators who operate on East Coast Main Line, are urging passengers NOT to travel to/from London King’s Cross or on services via Finsbury Park on Saturday 20th and Sunday 21st June 2020.

This is because of the next stage of work on the East Coast Upgrade is continuing with the installation of new electrical equipment over the weekend, and follows on from previous upgrade works. 

The project will see a disused railway tunnel just outside London King’s Cross reopened, allowing more tracks to be laid so that more trains can use the station.

All work will take place following government guidelines during the Coronavirus pandemic.

On LNER train services, rail replacement bus services will be in operation between St Neots and Bedford where passengers can take a Thameslink train into London.

On Govia Thameslink Railway, no Great Northern or Thameslink services will run on the East Coast Main Line into London King’s Cross, London St Pancras or Moorgate. Rail replacement buses will be in operation from Potters Bar and New Barnet to stations on the Bedford to London St Pancras route, and to London Underground stations for onward travel.

Ed Akers, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “The COVID-19 crisis continues to bring significant challenges for the railway, however we are working day and night to keep the railway running reliably and safely and to carry out essential work. On Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 June, we will continue with a vital project to upgrade the East Coast Main Line in a £1.2billion investment. We’ve changed our working methods on site to make sure we can follow Public Health Guidelines and carry on with this project which will bring significant benefits for passengers. We’d like to remind everyone that they should only be making journeys that are necessary, but if you do need to travel, please seek alternative travel arrangements. Bus replacement services will be in place, but these will take significantly longer than usual.”

Rail Minister, Chris Heaton-Harris said: “With capacity on our railways significantly reduced due to COVID-19, it is important that people work from home if they can, stagger their travel times to avoid crowds, and use other forms of transport wherever possible. For those people who do have to travel, we understand this closure will cause significant disruption to their journeys over the weekend. However this work is the next stage of the vital East Coast upgrade which will deliver more trains, thousands more seats for long distance passengers and more reliable journeys in the future.”

A spokesperson on behalf of train operators on the route, said: “We appreciate any engineering work can cause inconvenience, but this work is really important to make sure we have a railway which can meet the needs of communities and economies along the route for the long term. We thank our passengers in advance for their understanding and flexibility. The work will mean more reliable, more frequent and faster services with more seats, improving travel for our passengers. We’d urge passengers to continue to follow the Government advice to only travel when necessary, and to avoid use of public transport where possible at this time. If you have to travel please check how your journey will be affected by visiting, National Rail Enquiries or check with your specific train operator.”

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