Easter getaway underway

Thousands of Londoners are expected to head out of town for the bank holiday weekend.

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Thousands escaping the cold weather

Around 600,000 passengers are expected to leave from Heathrow airport, 214,000 from Gatwick, 110,000 from Stansted and 55,000 from Luton this weekend, as cold Britons jet out for some sunny relief to the extended winter weather.

Journeys will be affected by the major building work at Reading while some travellers could be held up by work on the West Coast Main Line in the West Midlands. A strike at French ports has been called off though.

The Highways Agency has suspended road works over Easter on a number motorways and major roads but works remain on the M1 near Milton Keynes.

Reading: journeys could take over an hour longer

Building work at Reading station

Thousands of rail passengers are facing ten days of severe disruption as work to build a new £900m station at Reading reaches its most crucial stage.

Lines will close and passengers are warned journeys over Easter could take an hour and a half longer.

It means no direct services from places like Swindon, Oxford and Newbury to London. Trains from Bournemouth and Southampton to the north will also be badly hit.

When the project is complete it will increase capacity and ease delays at the most overcrowded and congested station on the network.

An army of workers will move in later tonight. So many will be on site that six thousand hotel rooms have been booked over the week to accommodate them.

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