1. ITV Report

WARNING: 34 days of major Metro line closures

Metro services will return to normal on Sunday 3 September, as the school summer holidays end. Photo: ITV News

Metro passengers in Newcastle and North Tyneside are being warned ahead of 34 days of line closures, to allow for a £20 million modernisation programme.

  • The Metro line will be closed between South Gosforth and Four Lane Ends from Monday 31 July until Friday 11 August.
  • The closure area will then be widened - South Gosforth to Shiremoor - from Saturday 12 August until Saturday 2 September.
  • Metro services will return to normal on Sunday 3 September, as the school summer holidays end.

Nexus, the public body which owns and manages the Tyne and Wear Metro, is installing 6.3km of new track and replacing the Killingworth Road Metro bridge.

The work forms part of the £350m Metro all change modernisation programme.

The major line closure, 34 days in total, is required so that the work can be carried out as quickly possible with the minimum amount of disruption.

Frequent replacement bus services will be provided in the affected areas during the closures.

Speaking about the line closures, Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis, said:

Most passengers will not be affected, but if you travel between South Gosforth and Shiremoor as part of your journey then you will need to allow for extra journey time.

"There will be frequent trains across the rest of the Metro network, and extra services at peak times between North Tyneside stations and Newcastle city centre via Whitley Bay and Wallsend. This is the best option for passengers who don't want to use the replacement bus services.

"I apologise in advance to anyone who will be disrupted by the works.

"We have packed in a huge amount of modernisation work this summer which is vital for securing the long term future of Metro for many years to come. Renewal projects on this scale can only be done by closing Metro lines."

– Customer Services Director at Nexus, Huw Lewis
The £350m Metro all change modernisation programme is an on-going Government funded scheme to modernise the Tyne and Wear Metro. Credit: ITV News

The modernisation works on the Metro line will also take place during weekends and also at night, during Metro's track access hours.

Nexus has already sent letters to over 3,000 households between South Gosforth and Shiremoor to make residents aware of the forthcoming works. It has also carried out public drop in sessions for people to find out more about the project.

The Stadium of Light Metro station has been revamped to celebrate 20 years of the nearby football ground.

The £350m Metro all change modernisation programme is an on-going Government funded scheme to modernise the Tyne and Wear Metro with new-look stations, refurbished trains, and new infrastructure including tracks, signals and overhead lines.

The programme began in 2010 and since then more than £200m has been invested in the Tyne and Wear Metro's infrastructure.

The Summer 2017 modernisation works include:

  • A £14m scheme to replace the Metro tracks and strengthen embankments between South Gosforth and Northumberland Park.
  • The bridge over Killingworth Road in Gosforth, which dates to the Victorian era, will be removed and a new steel bridge will be installed as part of a £5.5m scheme.
  • Essential maintenance of steel work at Northumberland Park Metro station.

The 2017 Major Line Closures in numbers:

  • 6.3 kilometres of new track
  • One new set of points
  • 890 tonnes of new rail
  • 1,400 metres of embankment stabilisation work
  • 9,000 new sleepers
  • 34,000 tonnes of new track ballast

Metro all change programme, progress:

  • 25 stations refurbished
  • 24.5km of new tracks
  • 2.9km of new drainage
  • 86 Metro trains have been refurbished and are back in service.
  • 18 escalators replaced
  • 12 lifts replaced
  • 5 new lift installations
  • 4km of overhead line
  • 5 level crossings upgraded
  • 50 new sets of point motors
  • 31.5km of refurbished cable troughing
  • 44km of signalling cables replaced
  • 12 bridges refurbished/reconstructed, with further 5 to be strengthened this year.
  • 5 redundant bridges removed.

For further information about the major line closures in North Tyneside passengers can find out more on the Nexus website, or by calling the Nexus Customer Service Centre 0191 20 20 747.

Information and updates will also be on the My Metro Twitter page @My--_Metro and the Tyne and Wear Metro Facebook page.