The UK’s Network Rail has announced that it will carry out upgrade works on the Harwich branch line in England to improve rail services.

As part of the renovation programme, the replacement of track, sleepers and ballast will take place.

The work involves the replacement of over a quarter of a mile of track near Harwich International station, as well as the sleepers and more than 600t of ballast.

Furthermore, the surfaces at three level crossings will also be restored.

The company said that the replacement of the track will eradicate speed restrictions, causing cancellations and delays.

The rail replacement services will take place on Sundays from 10 January until 7 February, when the trains are not operating.

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To strengthen the trackbed, embankment works will also be carried out at Wrabness, enabling trains to run safely and reliably.

Greater Anglia managing director Jamie Burles said: “The new track will help improve punctuality and reliability on our network. Government advice is currently to stay at home, although you can travel with us if you need to for medical appointments, work or other reasons listed in the guidance.

“We would like to reassure customers who need to travel with us that they can travel with confidence – including on rail replacement buses – as we continue to focus cleaning and sanitisation and making it easier for people to socially distance.

“Anyone who needs to travel during these engineering works should check before they travel and allow more time for their journey. Everyone will be able to complete their journey with us, even if part of it is by rail replacement bus.”