A record 11,000 rail engineers are working over the festive period to maintain and renew track and signals.
Network Rail staff are out at 3,000 locations with £200 million being spent.
Among the key projects in the south are:
London Bridge - Over 1,000 staff are laying new track, signals and working on the station redevelopment that will ease capacity. It is part of the £6.5 billion Thameslink Project.
It will lead to improvements to rail services from Sussex, Surrey and Kent to London. Work continues until January 5th.
A Royal Navy sailor will be celebrating Christmas in the South Atlantic this year - working away from his five young children and wife.
Adam Bartle, aged 26, is working on board HMS Clyde in the South Atlantic over the festive period and has said he misses his family back home in Gosport, Hampshire.
“I would like wish my five young beautiful children a very merry Christmas, I miss and love you all very much and can’t wait to see you. Love you all so much, miss you all millions see you soon daddy. “To Kelly, I love you so much and miss you, wish I could be there with you to see our kids open their presents on Christmas morning.”
Christmas for Royal Navy Officer Martin Scutt will be different this year - as he spends it miles away from family and friends in the South Atlantic.
Surgeon Lieutenant Commander Scutt, 42, of Ryde in Hampshire, is serving on board Royal Navy Ice Patrol Ship, HMS Protector, in the South Atlantic – one of 4 Royal Navy Ships deployed to the region this Christmas.
In true naval tradition the ship’s doctor, will join his fellow officers in serving Christmas dinner to the rest of the sailors on board – a switch in the day-to-day routine – while his wife Christine and her family enjoy their Christmas lunch back in Ryde, Isle of Wight.
Maxine Richardson, who lives in Portsmouth, will be spending Christmas in the South Atlantic after she was deployed with one of the 4 Royal Navy ships in the region this year.
She'll be based on HMS Clyde, a Portsmouth-based ship, which is permanently stationed in the South Atlantic to deliver security to the area.
Maxine, 42, will be enjoying Christmas dinner abroad while her two children will be back in Portsmouth and her parents enjoying Christmas in the Caribbean.
A Naval sailor from Fareham in Hampshire who is serving on board HMS Kent in the Gulf has sent a special message to his fiancee and 11-month-old daughter.
Paul Howe, 27, joined the Navy in January 2013 and so this is his first deployment and although missing friends and family, he says he is enjoying the job.
People are being warned about the dangers of Chinese lanterns, ahead of the Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Chinese lanterns, also known as wish or flying lanterns, have become increasingly popular worldwide as a means of celebrating special occasions - however, they carry a significant risk of fire or injury if not used wisely.
The lanterns are generally made from paper, supported by a wire frame that incorporates a holder at the base for a solid fuel heat source.
There have been house fires in the county in recent years caused by Chinese lanterns landing on roofs.
Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Home safety manager Neil Chamberlain said: "With Chinese lanterns, you're basically throwing a naked flame into the sky with no control over the direction it will take or where it will land - in addition, there is no guarantee that the fuel source will be fully extinguished and cooled when the lantern eventually descends, and that presents a real fire hazard."
He added: "Chinese lanterns are very attractive when they're in the sky, and we fully understand why people use them.
"We would just urge anyone who's thinking of buying some to celebrate Christmas or New Year to think very carefully about where they will be released."
Locations that should be considered unsuitable for flying lanterns include areas with standing crops, anywhere near buildings with thatched roofs, areas of dense woodland and areas of heath or bracken, especially in dry conditions.
Consideration should also be given to the proximity to major roads or airfields.
Further advice on the use of Chinese lanterns can be found at www.wiltsfire.gov.uk/chineselanterns
Swimmers are set to the brave the cold today for a traditional Christmas Day dip.
One event has been organised to raise funds for the Macmillan Unit at Christchurch Hospital in Dorset.
It is a Specialist Palliative Care Unit for cancer patients in the local community.
The event takes place 9.45am at Boscombe beach this morning.
Did Father Christmas bring you an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) or drone for you to fly last night?Read the full story ›
Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service has released 12 top tips for ho-ho-home safety over the festive period
· Check your Christmas lights are in good working order and conform to the British Safety Standard. Never overload electrical sockets, and make sure outdoor lights are fitted with a residual current device.
· Always switch off Christmas lights before going to bed or leaving the property.
· Never place candles near your Christmas tree, decorations or furnishings – and never leave a burning candle unattended.
· Decorations can burn easily – so don’t hang them near lights or heaters.
· Keep matches, lighters and candles out of the reach of children.
· If you’re having a few festive drinks, take extra care in the kitchen. Never leave your Christmas dinner cooking unattended and make sure you switch off the oven and hob when the meal is done.
· Make sure any guests know what to do in the event of an emergency – do they know where door/window keys are kept and have you shown them the escape route?
· Many fires start when people fall asleep while smoking, so make sure you extinguish cigarettes properly – and never smoke in bed.
· If you’re planning on celebrating with fireworks, make sure you follow the instructions.
· Never remove the batteries from your smoke alarm to power a new Christmas toy.
· Make sure you test your smoke alarm every week – and why not spread a little festive goodwill by checking on any elderly relatives, friends or neighbours as well.
· If you don’t already have one, get a carbon monoxide alarm and test it regularly – this is essential in homes with gas appliances, real fires and/or woodburners.
Home safety manager Neil Chamberlain said: “Sadly, over the years, we have seen too many fires both locally and nationally during the Christmas period. We want everyone to have a happy, enjoyable and safe Christmas, so we hope these top tips will be a handy reminder.”
Sixteen people have been charged during Surrey Police's crackdown on drink or drug-driving related offences.
As part of the campaign, Police will be proactively releasing the names of those that have been charged, while officers will be Tweeting about people who have been stopped on suspicion of drink or drug-driving offences, giving brief details such as when and where the motorists were pulled over.
This brings the total number of Surrey motorists charged with drink driving in December to 39.
For the full list of those charged on each day see below:
Shaileshs Patel, 42, of Ardath Road, Leicester was stopped in Hersham. He was charged with drink driving and released on bail to appear at Staines Magistrates Court on January 7.
Afraz Anwar, 43, of Windsor Road, Hounslow, was stopped in Ashford and charged with failing to provide a specimen of breath and no insurance. He was released on bail to appear at Staines Magistrates Court on January 21.
David Kilma, 35, of High Street, Esher was stopped in Esher. He was charged with driving without insurance and drink driving and was released on bail to appear at Staines Magistrates Court on January 7.
Glyn David Roberts, 59, of Scotlands Close, Haslemere was stopped in Godalming . He was charged with failing to provide a specimen of breath in custody and released on bail to appear at Guildford Magistrates Court on January 20.
Suki Chandi Pickering, 42,of Crowhurst Mead, Godstone, was stopped in Godstone and charged with drink driving. She was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
John Joseph O'Toole, 56, of Winkworth Road, Redhill was stopped in Redhill and charged with drink driving. He was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
Daniel James Kingsbury, 32, of Bolters Road South, Horley was stopped in Horley and charged with drink driving. He was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
Samantha Arfield, 41, of Guildford Road, Bagshot, was stopped in Worplesdon and charged with drink driving. She was released on bail to appear at Guildford Magistrates Court on January 8.
Claire Witcombe, 50, of Beech Lane, Walton-on-the-Hill was stopped in Walton-on-the-Hill and charged with drink driving. She was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
Rebecca Taylor, 32, of St Marys Road, Surbiton was stopped in Staines and charged with drink driving. She was released on bail to appear at Staines Magistrates Court on January 21.
Brian Culley, 42, of Mylne Square, Wokingham, Berkshire, was stopped in Bagshot and charged with drink driving. He was released on bail to appear at Guildford Magistrates Court on January 8.
Fabien Caublot, 25, of Lower Road, Redhiil was stopped in Reigate and charged with drink driving. He was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
Alan Jones, 39, of Station Road, Hurst Green, Sussex, was stopped on the M25 near junction Redhill and charged with drink driving. He was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
Paige Hanmar, 20, of Memorial Close, Oxted, was stopped in Redhill and charged with drink driving. She was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 9.
Kynan Doha, 28, of Weston Road, Guildford as stopped in Guildford and charged with drink driving. She as released on bail to appear at Guildford Magistrates Court on January 8.
Christopher Dalley, 28, of Priory Road, Forest Row, Sussex, was stopped in Tadworth and charged with drink driving. He was released on bail to appear at Redhill Magistrates Court on January 16.