Quicker journeys promised as engineering work set to continue this Easter

Wednesday 10th April 2019

Rail engineering work continues this Easter as Network Rail carries out vital electrification works in the Severn Tunnel.

The work, which when complete will enable passengers to experience the full benefits of new Intercity Express Trains, will also see a new accessible footbridge provided at Patchway Station.

With the railway line closed to train services between Bristol Parkway and Newport, trains will run to an amended timetable from Good Friday, Friday 19, to Easter Monday, Monday 22 April, and bus replacement services provided where trains are unable to operate.

 Electrifying overhead wires

GWR Operations Director Rob Mullen said:

“We have worked hard with our colleagues at Network Rail to keep disruption to a minimum, but this work needs to be done to allow customers to take full advantage of new Intercity Express Trains on a more resilient and reliable network.

“Our new trains are already providing over 6,000 seats everyday between South Wales and London Paddington, or the equivalent of 75 extra carriages, and with the completion of electrification planned for later this year, and a new timetable, we will also be able to reduce journey times.”

  • trains between London Paddington and South Wales will terminate at Bristol Parkway and restart from Newport with replacement road transport in between
  • trains from Portsmouth Harbour to Cardiff Central will terminate at Bristol Parkway instead; trains from Taunton to Cardiff Central will terminate at Bristol Temple Meads
  • replacement buses and coaches will operate between Bristol Parkway and Newport, with some calling additionally at Patchway and Severn Tunnel Junction

Track upgrades in Somerset will also affect services on Sunday 21 April meaning buses and coaches will replace trains between Frome and Yeovil Pen Mill.

  • trains between Bristol Temple Meads and Weymouth will terminate at Frome and restart from Yeovil Pen Mill with replacement road transport in between
  • trains between London Paddington and Devon/Cornwall will be diverted via alternate routes, extending normal journey times between 30 to 50 minutes
  • replacement buses and coaches will also operate that day between Castle Cary and Taunton as well as between Castle Cary and Westbury

Further work is planned in the Severn tunnel on Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 April, when trains between London Paddington and South Wales will be diverted via an alternate route.

Replacement road transport will still operate between Bristol Parkway and Newport, with some buses calling additionally at Patchway and Severn Tunnel Junction.

For more details about the impact on train services of rail engineering work, visit GWR.com/Upgrade.

Notes to editors

Great Western Railway (GWR) provides high speed, commuter, regional and branch line train services. We help over 100 million passengers reach their destinations every year - across South Wales, the West Country, the Cotswolds, and large parts of Southern England.

We’re currently seeing the biggest investment in the network since Brunel so we can offer more trains, more seats, and shorter, more frequent journeys and continue the network’s heritage of helping connect more businesses to new and prosperous markets. Through a series of initiatives we aim to be a good neighbour to the communities we serve and are committed to making a positive social impact in those regions. Learn how we're Building a Greater West at GWR.com. GWR is a FirstGroup company.