Bank holiday woe for Northamptonshire's weekend train travellers

Engineering work hits services on two lines into London

By Kevin Nicholls
Tuesday, 25th May 2021, 12:42 pm

Northamptonshire rail passengers face a double dose of disruption over the Bank Holiday weekend.

Fewer trains will run between Northampton and London Euston as improvement work continues on the West Coast Main Line.

And anyone planning a day out in the capital from Corby, Kettering and Wellingborough face even more problems as the line is shut south of Luton on Saturday and Sunday.

Trains on both key rail routes through Northamptonshire will be affected by engineering work over the bank holiday weekend

Passengers will be forced to take buses and the London underground to reach St Pancras International, more than doubling journey times.

Thameslink trains from Luton will connect Northamptonshire passengers with Luton Airport.

This weekend's closure is for work to continue on the new £40million Brent Cross West station, which is due to open next year.

Operators East Midlands Railway and London Northwestern Railway are warning people to check journey times using the National Rail website before planning any trips out with the regular 51-minute East Midlands Railway Connect services from Wellingborough expected to take more than TWO HOURS.

A spokesman added: "This work is vital to the success of the Brent Cross project which will see a new station built on the Midland Main Line between Hendon and Cricklewood.

"Trains to and from the north will start and terminate at Luton. Services across the rest of the Intercity and Connect route will be re-timed or altered.

"A replacement coach service will run from Luton to Stanmore Underground station to connect with London Underground services to St Pancras and Central London

"As a result of the reduced timetable we expect services to be busier than usual, meaning social distancing will be more difficult to apply and rail replacement bus services will have limited capacity.

Fewer trains will be able to run between Northampton and London Euston as Network Rail is upgrading tracks and signals to improve reliability on the West Coast Main Line.

■ Passengers travelling between Euston and Birmingham on all three days will need to change at Northampton on many services.

■ Trains to London Euston from Northampton, Milton Keynes and Tring will run to amended timetable on Saturday 29 May.

■ A reduced number of trains will run between Northampton, Milton Keynes and London Euston on Sunday 30 May and Monday 31 May

Tim Shoveller, managing director of Network Rail’s North West and Central region, said: “These essential improvements will build on the great progress already made this year to improve the railway as passengers return in greater numbers.

"I urge people to check their travel in advance so they know exactly what to expect from their journey.”