Maintaining the railway between Swindon and Bristol

Monday 24th August 2020

Bank Holiday travel advice

Track renewal work will take place west of Swindon at weekends at the end of August and the start of September, which could affect your journey. 

Network Rail is carrying out essential engineering work on the route between Swindon and Bristol Parkway affecting trains from Sunday 29 to Monday 31 August.

Further rail improvement work will affect services between Swindon and Chippenham as well as Bristol Parkway on Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 September.

This work is needed to maintain the reliability and performance of Great Western Railway’s long-distance services to/from London Paddington.

GWR Customer Service and Operations Director Richard Rowland said:

“An awful lot of hard work has been done to make sure people feel that they can travel safely, and that includes running more trains and carriages to make extra room.

“Planning is well underway for a further uplift in services in September, re-introducing even more services to help accommodate a return to travel for school, college or for work.

“This renewal work will help to ensure that those trains are able to run more reliably and efficiently, but please remember to plan your journey ahead of time.”

With more people starting to use trains again operators are reminding passengers to:
  • Plan ahead – travel at quieter times where they can, buy a ticket online and in advance, and book ahead if you need travel assistance
  • Consider others – wear a face covering unless you’re exempt, not travelling if you have Covid symptoms and consider others, not all disabilities can be seen
  • Stay safe – maintaining your distance wherever possible; wash your hands and carry hand sanitiser, paying contactless where you can
Train operators across the country have launched a ‘Let’s travel safely this summer’ pledge which highlights the extra steps taken to make journeys safe from coronavirus, including running more trains and carriages to make room; boosting trains and stations cleaning; help with hygiene by making it easier to keep hands clean and increasing staff and information to help people travel safely.

If I am travelling over the bank holiday how will my journey be affected?

From Saturday 29 to Monday 31 August, trains between London Paddington and Swansea will be diverted via an alternative route between Swindon and Newport. These services will call at Patchway instead of Bristol Parkway and a regular shuttle bus service will be provided to link the two stations, adding up to 30 minutes to journey times.

A second weekend of works will take place on Saturday 5 and Sunday 6 September, and as well as London Paddington/Swansea trains being diverted between Swindon and Newport (via Kemble) trains between Swindon and Bristol Temple Meads will also be diverted between Reading and Bath Spa, adding up to an hour for journeys between London and South Wales.

These services will not call at Bristol Parkway or Patchway; replacement buses will run between Swindon and Bristol Parkway instead.

Trains between London Paddington and Bristol Temple Meads will be diverted via an alternative route between Reading and Bath Spa.

These services will not call at Didcot Parkway, Swindon or Chippenham; replacement buses will run between Swindon and Didcot, and Swindon to Chippenham and Bath Spa instead.

In addition, trains between Swindon and Westbury will not run; replacement buses will run between Chippenham and Westbury instead.

Trains between London Paddington and Cheltenham Spa are unaffected by this disruption and will run as normal on both weekends.

For more information visit GWR.com/Upgrade.