West Coast Mainline to close for 16 days with no services on line north of Carlisle

Rail replacement services from Carlisle to Glasgow and Edinburgh will be available. Credit: PA

The West Coast Main Line is set to be closed for 16 days as major upgrade works are set to commence at Carstairs.

There will be no trains operating on the West Coast Main Line north of Carlisle from Saturday 4 March until Sunday 19 March.

The work conducted by Network Rail is to improve and modernise Carstairs Junction as part of a £164million Scottish Government investment.

A limited rail service will operate between Carlisle and Glasgow, via Dumfries which will mean journeys between the two cities will take approximately 75 minutes longer.  

Barry Milsom, Executive Director of Operations at Avanti West Coast said: “This closure of the West Coast Main Line in Scotland will enable Network Rail to carry out the first phase of their major upgrade work at Carstairs.

"During this time, there’ll be no direct trains to or from Glasgow and Edinburgh for 16 days from Saturday 4 March and as a result, we’ll be operating a reduced timetable north of Carlisle.

"Rail replacement services will also be in place. We would like to thank our customers for their patience and strongly advise they plan their journey, as well as check the Avanti West Coast website for the latest updates before travelling.”

The 16-day closure between 4 – 19 March is the first phase of a three-month programme of work by Network Rail, which will see trains diverted, buses replace trains, and longer journey times for services between Carlisle and Glasgow or Edinburgh until June. 

On Saturday 4, Sunday 5, and Sunday 12 March, Network Rail will also be completing essential railway improvements at Preston station.

This will mean the West Coast Main Line will be closed at Preston and journeys between Wigan and Lancaster will involve a rail replacement service.

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