1. ITV Report

Significant disruption for railway passengers over Christmas

Work at London's Liverpool Street station will mean bus replacements over the Christmas period. Credit: PA

Rail passengers have been told to prepare for major disruption during the festive period as a number of lines close for engineering work.

Network Rail (NR), which manages rail infrastructure, is carrying out up to 200 improvement projects over Christmas, with some beginning on Christmas Eve to give engineers four days to carry out upgrades.

  • Which cities will be affected?

Manchester, Cardiff and London will be affected by the maintenance work, and passengers have been advised to plan journeys in advance using the National Rail Enquiries website.

  • What is the impact of the disruption in London?

No trains will operate in or out of London Paddington between December 24 and 29 because of work on the new Crossrail rail link.

Major upgrades for Crossrail's eastern section mean bus replacements and diversions will be in place for services to and from London Liverpool Street from December 24 to January 2.

Network Rail said 95% of the rail network will be unaffected by the work on 'essential upgrades'. Credit: PA

Work at New Cross means no Southeastern trains will operate to London Bridge and Charing Cross from December 24-28, apart from Hastings services which will be diverted to London Bridge.

  • What is the impact of the disruption in Manchester?

Work on Manchester's Ordsall Chord scheme means rail replacement buses and diversions will be operational for Oxford Road services from December 18 to December 28.

  • What is the impact of the disruption in Cardiff?

There will be no late-night trains between Cardiff Central, Bridgend, Newport and the Valleys on Christmas Eve due to work around the Welsh capital, with further disruption from December 27 until January 3.

  • Why is the work being conducted during the festive period?

Network Rail said such work is carried out through the year but larger "essential upgrades" take place on bank holidays as there are less passengers travelling on the network.

This vital investment will make the railway more reliable for years to come, while improving journeys for thousands of passengers.

There's never a good time to impact on journeys and I'd like to thank passengers in advance for their patience.

– Phil Hufton, Network Rail's managing director for England and Wales
  • How much of the rail network will be affected?

Mr Hufton said more than 95% of the rail network will be unaffected during the festive period.