Network Rail to execute £1.2bn upgrade work on East Coast Main Line

10 February 2021 (Last Updated February 10th, 2021 15:19)

The UK's Network Rail has announced that it is set to execute an important stage of the £1.2bn upgrade work on the East Coast Main Line.

Network Rail to execute £1.2bn upgrade work on East Coast Main Line
Network Rail teams that have been working for more than three months will now streamline the track layout outside of King’s Cross station and will work to reopen a railway tunnel, which was shut in the 1970s. Credit: Network Rail.

The UK’s Network Rail has announced that it is set to execute an important stage of the £1.2bn upgrade work on the East Coast Main Line.

Network Rail teams have been working for more than three months and will now streamline the track layout outside of London King’s Cross station and work to reopen a railway tunnel that was shut in the 1970s.

These upgrades will reduce congestion, making it easier for trains to enter and exit King’s Cross.

The upgrade work will start in March and continue until early June. Network Rail stated that the full train service will resume from 7 June.

After the completion of these upgrades, installation of more than 6km of new track and 15km of overhead wires will take place.

During the execution of the project, most LNER services to/from the north of England and Scotland will start/end at Peterborough.

Two trains an hour will start/end at St Neots, allowing commuters to use replacement coach services to connect with trains between St Pancras International and Bedford.

Moreover, commuters travelling on all LNER services will be required to have a seat reservation.

Network Rail also stated that the currently suspended Grand Central and Hull Train services are expected to resume on 1 March.

Network Rail East Coast Upgrade principal programme sponsor Ed Akers said: “This East Coast Upgrade is a truly transformative programme, which will bring significant and tangible benefits such as faster, more frequent and more reliable journeys, which will be felt by all those using the East Coast Main Line and we’d once again like to thank all those impacted by this work for their patience.”

LNER managing director David Horne said: “We understand this crucial work may disrupt customers’ travel plans over the next few months and we appreciate their understanding. When completed, this project will bring long-term benefits for customers and communities along the East Coast route.

“This is a crucial stage of the East Coast Upgrade programme that will see two new tracks installed inside the new tunnel and signalling system, which will allow LNER to operate faster, more frequent services connecting London, the North of England and Scotland. Customers who need to travel on the dates affected should plan ahead as we work with Network Rail to deliver the benefits of this major investment.”