UK railway news round-up

This week a freight train derailment causes major disruption at Sheffield station and the fund for Stonehaven victims tops £142,000.

Freight train derailment at Sheffield station causes travel chaos

A freight train derailment at Sheffield station is causing major disruption to passenger services.

Several wagons came off the tracks while the train was passing through the station at around 2.45am on Wednesday, Network Rail said.

Advert

No-one was hurt but “significant damage” was caused to signalling and points equipment.

Click here to find out more.

Fund for Stonehaven rail crash victims tops £142,000

Stonehaven derailment scene. Photo: Network Rail

An appeal fund set up for the families of the three people who died in the Stonehaven rail accident has raised more than £142,000.

Advert

Unions which set up the fund said they have been “overwhelmed” by the support from the public.

Driver Brett McCullough, conductor Donald Dinnie and passenger Christopher Stuchbury died after a passenger train hit a landslip near Stonehaven in Aberdeenshire in August following heavy rain.

Click here to find out more.

Advert

Construction of sea wall to protect Dawlish coastal railway begins

Dawlish Coastal Railway

Construction has begun on a new and bigger sea wall at Dawlish to protect the railway and town from rising sea levels and extreme weather for the next 100 years.

In 2014, a storm caused a stretch of the Devon coastal railway to collapse into the sea – cutting off the South West peninsular from the rest of the line.

Strong winds and high seas led to the wall between the sea and railway being breached, with a section of the wall washing away as well as 80 metres of track, platforms at the railway station and sections of the coastal path.

Advert

Click here to find out more.

Britain’s most bashed bridge is at Hinckley

Watling bridge

A 15ft high railway bridge across one of Britain’s main trunk roads has been revealed by Network Rail as the structure most hit by HGVs.

The bridge spanning Watling Street on the Leicestershire-Warwickshire border on the A5 at Hinckley has been hit 25 times in the past year, figures reveal. The line carries rail traffic between Leicester and Birmingham and is part of a major freight route for intermodal traffic from Felixstowe to the West Midlands.

In a feature in the April 2017 issue, Railway Magazine editor Chris Milner looked at how ‘bridge bashing’ was on the increase, and at that time the Hinckley bridge was lying in eight equal place with just eight strikes.

Click here to find out more.

New model is needed for rail services, Welsh minister says

A new model for operating rail services across Britain needs to be found due to the Covid-19 pandemic, according to a Welsh Government minister.

Deputy transport minister Lee Waters said the Welsh Government was nationalising its rail services following a significant drop in passenger numbers because of coronavirus.

Private operator KeolisAmey, a joint venture between French transport giant Keolis and Amey, has run the franchise in Wales for just two years after taking it over from Arriva Trains Wales.

Click here to find out more.

Disused train carriages converted into new school library

Network Rail teams in the North East have volunteered their skills to help a primary school in County Durham acquire two disused railway carriages and convert them into a school library.

Network Rail teams in the North East have volunteered their skills to help a primary school in County Durham acquire two disused railway carriages and convert them into a school library.

Kirk Merrington Primary School in Spennymoor appealed for help after outgrowing its existing facilities, following a surge in pupil numbers. The previous library was repurposed as a classroom, with the books moving to shelves on the corridors. The school fundraised to buy a disused pacer train, which is now being transformed into an imaginative learning environment.

In preparation for the two carriages to be installed, Network Rail volunteers carried out work to install railway equipment such as track, as well as sleepers and ballast which support the rails, for the carriages to stand on. The carriages have now been transported to the school, rolled from a low loader vehicle across the car park and secured in place.

Click here to find out more.

Victoria station marks 100 years since Unknown Warrior burial

Unknown Warrior pop up at Victoria Station

A pop-up exhibition has opened in London Victoria station to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the journey and burial of the Unknown Warrior.

A series of panels created with the National Army Museum in Chelsea explains to passengers the story of the Unknown Warrior, a century after his body was carried through the station on his way from the Western Front to his final resting place at Westminster Abbey. 

As substantially fewer passengers are travelling following the latest government guidelines, Network Rail Southern Region will be telling his story through its Twitter feed @networkrailse on November 11. 

Click here to find out more.

Network Rail recognised in top 20 apprentice employers

Network Rail recognised in top 20 apprentice employers

Network Rail has been named as one of the top 20 apprentice employers in England in the National Apprenticeship Service’s Top 100 Apprenticeship Employers for 2020.

The Top 100 Apprenticeship Employers is the new national league table showcasing the nation’s outstanding apprenticeship employers, developed by the National Apprenticeship Service, in partnership with High Fliers Research.

Out of 10,000 apprentice employers, and out of 400 who were considered for the top 100 list, Network Rail ranked 20th.

Click here to find out more.

Latest service updates

Latest National Rail service updates

CrossCountry – Buses replace trains between Newport and Bristol Parkway due to ongoing engineering work.
East Midlands Railway – Disruption through Sheffield expected until Tuesday 17 November.
Gatwick Express – Gatwick Express services suspended until further notice.
Grand Central – Grand Central service suspended until the end of Wednesday 2 December.
Great Western Railway – Buses replace trains between Newport and Bristol Parkway due to ongoing engineering work.
Hull Trains – Hull Trains service suspended until Wednesday 2 December.
Northern – Disruption through Sheffield expected until Tuesday 17 November.
TransPennine Express – Disruption through Sheffield expected until Tuesday 17 November.

Transport For London Status

The Government is asking everyone to help control the spread of coronavirus by trying to reduce journeys during this new period of national restrictions. If you need to travel, for example to work, for education or other legally permitted reasons, then you can, but you should walk or cycle where possible. Please plan ahead and if possible travel during quiet times.

We will continue to run as much of the network as possible and will update our website with any service changes. Please check before you travel.

We’re doing all we can to make sure those who need to travel can continue to use public transport safely and everyone must continue to take the simple steps of good hand hygiene, wearing a face covering in stations and for your whole journey, and social distancing wherever possible.

London Underground Status

Due to Crossrail works the following services will be affected. Please check before you travel and plan your journey ahead of time.

District Line – On Saturday 14 November, District line trains will not stop at Whitechapel station. Change at Aldgate East or Stepney Green and walk or use local bus services.

On Sunday 15 November, there will be no service between Tower Hill and West Ham. Use local bus or replacement bus services. Rail replacement bus DL6 will run between Tower Hill and Barking. Additionally, c2c will be operating a very limited service. For full details visit c2c-online.co.uk.

Hammersmith & City line – On Saturday 14 November, Hammersmith & City  line trains will not stop at Whitechapel station. Change at Aldgate East or Stepney Green and walk or use local bus services 

On Sunday 15 November, there will be no service between Hammersmith and Barking. Use alternative Tube, local or replacement bus services. Additionally, c2c will be operating a very limited service. For full details visit c2c-online.co.uk.

Northern line – From Saturday 14 until Sunday 15 November, there will be no service between Charing Cross and Kennington. And no Northern line services will stop at Kennington. Use alternative Tube or local bus services. 

No Night Tube or London Overground Night Service and limited Night Bus services are running.

See the latest status updates on London Underground, including a map of closures.

London Overground

Due to engineering work the following services will be affected.

From Saturday 14 until Sunday 15 November, there will be no service between:

  • Highbury & Islington and Shadwell. Rail replacement bus service X will run between Dalston Kingsland and Shadwell
  • Surrey Quays and New Cross. Use London Overground services to New Cross Gate and then walk or use local bus routes 53, 177 or 453

On Sunday 15 November, there will be no service between:

  • Clapham Junction and Willesden Junction. Use local bus services
  • Wandsworth Road and Clapham Junction until 10:45. All trains before 10:45 will be diverted to Battersea Park. Use local bus services or Southern Railway services
  • Edmonton Green and Cheshunt northbound from 21:30 until 23:00 and southbound after 22:15. Rail replacement service L2 will run
  • Hackney Downs and Chingford after 22:45. Use alternative Tube and local bus services. Rail replacement bus L3 will run
  • Romford and Upminster. Use local bus services

On Monday 16 until Thursday 19 November, there will be no service between Hackney Downs and Chingford after 22:45. Use alternative Tube and local bus services. Rail replacement bus L3 will run

No Night Tube or London Overground Night Service and limited Night Bus services are running. Check before you travel and plan your journey ahead of time.

DLR

On Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 November, there will be no service between Stratford International and Canning Town. Use alternative Tube and local bus services.

Check before you travel and plan your journey ahead of time.

Rivers

Until Wednesday 2 December, all London River Services will be suspended including the closure of all TfL pier locations. Please check for alternative routes.

The Woolwich Ferry services will continue to run, please plan ahead and check before you travel.

Emirates Air Line

The Emirates Air Line remains open with the following operating hours:

  • 07:00-21:00 Monday to Thursday
  • 07:00-22:00 Friday
  • 08:00-22:00 Saturday
  • 09:00-21:00 Sunday

Additional measures are in place to keep everyone safe, including a cashless operation (only contactless or Oyster accepted for travel), enhanced cleaning regime and social distancing, with only one passenger allowed per cabin, unless from the same household.

Please plan ahead and check before you travel.

TfL Rail

Due to track work the following services will be affected.

On Saturday 14 November after 20:30 and Sunday 15 November until 13:00 there will be a reduced service between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington. No service will stop at Acton Main Line, Hanwell or West Ealing on Saturday after 21:00 and on Sunday until 13:00.

On Sunday 15 November there will be no service between Liverpool Street and Shenfield. Use local bus services. Rail replacement bus service C and D will run 

Check before you travel and plan your journey ahead of time.

Buses and roads

Our dedicated school travel only bus services are running across various routes during term time on weekdays from 07:30-09:30 and 14:30-16:30. These buses have clear signs to differentiate them from regular bus services and information is posted at bus stops. Find out which routes have extra services.

Please plan and allow more time for your journeys if you are travelling by bus during school travel times as you may have to wait longer. Please travel during quieter times where possible. Check to see if your route is affected.

Limited Night Bus services are running and due to the following works, some buses may be diverted or stop short of their normal destination. Make sure you check before you travel.

A406 Eastbound Link Road, M11 Junction 4, Woodford – Closed for essential structure maintenance from 22:00 Friday 13 November until 05:30 Monday 16 November. This is due to essential work to maintain the safety of the road, including replacing the existing bridge joints. A signed diversion will be in place.

Old Street – From Monday 2 November 2020 a new road layout at the junction of Old Street and City Road was installed. Roads in the surrounding area are expected to be a lot busier. Please allow more time for your journey.

Alternatively, if you can, try cycling or walking part of journey. We have signed cycle routes in place to help guide you through the area. Find out more information

Bexley – Until mid-February 2021 the A2 Danson Road has been reduced to two lanes in each direction for traffic whilst we carry out essential maintenance to the underpass. Some works will require us to close two lanes in each direction but we will carry out these works at night to minimise the impacts especially during peak hours.  

Wandsworth Bridge – Until summer 2021 there will be a series of lane restrictions on Wandsworth Bridge whilst the borough carries out essential maintenance works. From Mid-November there will be one lane northbound over the bridge for all traffic including buses. A bus lane will be maintained in the southbound direction which will be wide enough to accommodate cyclists. Footways will be narrower on both sides for those walking across the bridge. 

Hammersmith Bridge – Following expert technical advice, Hammersmith & Fulham Council has closed the bridge to all traffic, including people walking and cycling – until we can be assured it’s safe.  We have made changes to public transport to help you make your journey across the river, including to bus route 533 which is providing much needed support for local trips. Please be aware this route can experience some delays and crowding during busy periods. For more information on alternative forms of travel and where to change services, please visit our travel advice page.

Knightsbridge – Until early November there will be lane restrictions and temporary lights on the A4, Knightsbridge at the junctions with Sloane Street and Brompton Road. These are for essential works carried out by Cadent Gas to replace a main.

Vauxhall Bridge – From 09:00 on Saturday 31 October, southbound lanes on Vauxhall Bridge reopened. Until late November 2020, Vauxhall Bridge will be closed to northbound traffic, this is due to safety critical repair works. Northbound towards Victoria will remain on the signed diversion via Albert Embankment, Lambeth Bridge and Millbank. If you are using the signed diversion route you will be exempt from the Congestion Charge and Ultra Low Emission Zone charges.

If your journey is through the area but not stopping locally, please consider re-routing. Chelsea Bridge, Lambeth Bridge and surrounding roads are also expected to be very busy. Find out more.

Delays are expected, plan ahead and check before you travel, for the latest information please visit status updates.

Check whether your bus is affected

See the latest status updates on road travel.

Santander Cycles

There will be no docking stations out of service this weekend.

Find out how to hire a Santander Cycle.

Find your nearest Santander Cycles docking stations.

Metros around the country

West Midlands Metro

There are no new service information updates.

Tyne & Wear Metro

Some services are cancelled due to driver availability. Please leave extra time for your journey. Sorry for the inconvenience caused. Details of affected journeys can be found here.

To keep safe, plan your journey in advance, avoid travelling at busier times if you can, wear a face covering unless exempt, stay apart from others and wash your hands frequently.

For more timetable information visit nexus.org.uk

Manchester Metrolink

National coronavirus restrictions, 5 November–2 December: Stay at home and avoid travel, except for work, education, or other legally permitted reasons.

On Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 November work will take place on Metrolink meaning there will be no tram service between Bury and Whitefield. A bus replacement service will be in operation between these stops.

Nottingham Express Transit

Following the latest government announcement, we want to reassure customers that still need to travel with us during lockdown that we will be operating a full service during this time.

Merseyrail

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, services are now operating between 07:00 and 19:00 Monday to Saturday.

This was based on staff availability to provide a reliable service to key workers and those making essential journeys.

Sunday services will still operate between 08:00 and 20:00.

Sheffield Super Tram

Due to the ongoing impact of the Coronavirus pandemic we are having to make short notice changes to our services, with effect from Saturday 7 November.

All routes will operate to the current timetables but services will end at around 8pm every day. There will be no service on any routes after around 8pm.

The current frequencies of service are unchanged;

YELLOW & BLUE: Up to every 15 minutes during the day, every 20 minutes at other times and on Sunday

PURPLE: Every 30 minutes

TRAM TRAIN: Every hour

Please be aware that due to the short notice of these changes, timetables on tram stops may be incorrect until updated information can be posted. Additionally, some journey planning tools and websites may also offer incorrect journey information.

Edinburgh Trams

The first tram and last tram will run at their usual time, but customers should expect trams to operate every 15 minutes during the day with this being kept under constant review.

Glasgow Subway

The Subway is running as normal.

Railway Reads

From the history of steam through to 21st century rail transport news, we have titles that cater for all rail enthusiasts. Covering diesels, modelling, steam and modern railways, check out our range of magazines and fantastic subscription offers.

Get The Railway Hub Weekly Round-up

Enter your e-mail address below and you will receive weekly rail news straight into your inbox...





You can unsubscribe at any time.

About the Author

Ben Stockdale

Let off some steam...