Rail service improvements and disruptions

New Great Northern timetable creates 15,588 more seats a week

New Great Northern timetable creates 15,588 more seats a week

15.10.14: Great Northern is to introduce a new timetable that will create an extra 15,588 off-peak seats a week on its services. The timetable, to be introduced on 14 December, includes changes on the Northern City Line, Cambridge, King’s Lynn...

Innovative work underway to tackle leaf fall impact

Innovative work underway to tackle leaf fall impact

14.10.14: Network Rail is working ‘even closer’ and more innovatively with rail operators to tackle the impact of autumn’s leaf fall on the network this year.  Leaves and vegetation on the rails can be compressed into a dense a...

Arriva Trains Wales hit by 24-hour conductor strike

Arriva Trains Wales hit by 24-hour conductor strike

10.10.14: Arriva Trains Wales (ATW) faces 24-hours of strike action starting at noon today from conductors on its north Wales rail services. The action, from members of the rail union RMT, is being taken over the sacking of two conductors by Arriva a...

Clegg proposes reopening ‘Varsity’ route in full

Clegg proposes reopening ‘Varsity’ route in full

07.10.14: The rail link between Oxford and Cambridge will be reopened in full, announced Nick Clegg at the Liberal Democrat party conference in Glasgow. The line through the "brain-belt of Britain" will be built to serve five new garden cities, the L...

Grand Central adding five more Class 180s to its fleet

Grand Central adding five more Class 180s to its fleet

07.10.14: Open access operator Grand Central Rail has announced a £7.8m fleet upgrade and station refurbishment plan, including the addition of five more Class 180s to its fleet. The investment follows the extension of its operating licence in...

Network Rail to reconnect rail lines at Port of Sunderland

Network Rail to reconnect rail lines at Port of Sunderland

02.10.14: Network Rail has started work to reconnect the Port of Sunderland to rail lines that were last used almost 20 years ago.  The project, set to boost the port’s import and export credentials, will take up to six months to complete...

New Glasgow Queen Street designs unveiled as second consultation begins

New Glasgow Queen Street designs unveiled as second consultation begins

02.10.14: The second public consultation on the proposed £104m transformation of Glasgow Queen Street station has been launched by Network Rail, with updated designs also unveiled.  Glasgow Queen Street is Scotland’s third busiest st...

More East Midlands train services under £2m package

More East Midlands train services under £2m package

30.09.14: A £2m package of improvements for rail services in the East Midlands has been announced by the Department for Transport. The funding comes from both local and central government pots and is for East Midlands Trains to provide a combin...

TOCs received £167m for delays but only paid passengers £22m – TSSA

TOCs received £167m for delays but only paid passengers £22m – TSSA

30.09.14: Train companies received over £167m in payments for delays from Network Rail this year, while only paying out £22.2m to passengers for disrupted journeys, according to rail union TSSA. When releasing the figures the union accuse...

Preliminary MetroWest rail project plans receive approval

Preliminary MetroWest rail project plans receive approval

26.09.14: Plans to develop regular shuttle rail services in the Bath and Bristol area – with stations at Saltford and Corsham – have moved a step closer to becoming reality.  It now has both government funding and planning approval.&...

Great Western electrification ‘under review’ as costs soar – Labour

Great Western electrification ‘under review’ as costs soar – Labour

25.09.14: Great Western Main Line electrification is failing with its “budget blown” and is “under review”, the Labour party has claimed.  Network Rail admits that "costs have risen", but says the project still represents...

Virgin Trains to invest £50m into West Coast services

Virgin Trains to invest £50m into West Coast services

18.09.14: Virgin Trains is to spend £50m on improvements for its West Coast services, including station upgrades and new on-board facilities. The investment includes £20m for station refurbishment, such as improved waiting rooms, extra ti...

Plans to build long-awaited Horden station ‘progressing’

Plans to build long-awaited Horden station ‘progressing’

17.09.14: Plans to build a new station in East Durham are ‘progressing’ and it could be operational by as soon as spring 2016, officials at Durham County Council (DCC) say. Work on the long-awaited station at Horden could start next year...

Delays mar first day of new operator’s Thameslink services

Delays mar first day of new operator’s Thameslink services

15.09.14: Delays have marred the first day of the new “mega rail franchise” operated by Govia. The first phase of the new Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern (TSGN) began today as Govia ran its first services since taking over operati...

Midland Main Line closures for bridge works ahead of electrification

Midland Main Line closures for bridge works ahead of electrification

11.09.14: Network Rail is to carry out reconstruction work on three bridges between Bedford and Wellingborough this month as part of its £1.5bn investment to electrify the Midland Main Line.  The modifications at Hartops bridge and Radwell...

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‘Time is running out’: MSP and union leaders call for government intervention into Springburn depot

19/02/2019‘Time is running out’: MSP and union leaders call for government intervention into Springburn depot

Scottish Labour and union leaders have called on the government to take the Springburn depot under public control as min... more >
South Western Railway strikes suspended after ‘significant breakthrough’ in guard dispute

19/02/2019South Western Railway strikes suspended after ‘significant breakthrough’ in guard dispute

Strike action by workers on the South Western Railway (SWR) have been suspended after a “significant breakthrough&... more >
MPs make joint-pledge to back rail investment in Liverpool Manchester corridor in Parliament

19/02/2019MPs make joint-pledge to back rail investment in Liverpool Manchester corridor in Parliament

More than 20 MPs from Liverpool and Manchester have signed a commitment to support rail investment in the north west. ... more >

editor's comment

23/01/2018Out with the old...

Despite a few disappointing policy announcements, especially for the electrification aficionados amongst us, 2017 was, like Darren Caplan writes on page 20, a year generally marked by positive news for the rail industry. We polished off the iconic Ordsall Chord (p32), hit some solid milestones on Thameslink (p40), progressed on ambitious rolling stock orders (p16), and finally started moving forward on HS2 (p14) ‒ paving the way for a New Ye... read more >

last word

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

Encouraging youngsters to be safe on the railway

This summer, Arriva Group's CrossCountry and the Scout Association joined to launch a new partnership to promote rail safety among young people. Chris Leech MBE, business community manager at the... more > more last word articles >

'the sleepers' daily blog

Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

05/02/2019Williams Rail Review: The end of saying sorry?

Keith Williams’ ongoing Rail Review presents a golden opportunity to rebuild the industry’s weakened relationship with its users and set it on a better track for the future, argues David Sidebottom, passenger director at Transport Focus. Passengers waiting at stations today are not peering down the line looking for a strategy ... more >
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TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

05/02/2019TrackWater: Embracing data in flood prevention

Mike Harding, from Lancaster University’s Data Science Institute, introduces us to TrackWater: an innovative project between Lancaster Univ... more >
High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

05/02/2019High-speed rail cannot stand in isolation

Last year, the Scottish Government announced two feasibility studies to better understand the economic and environmental implications of options ... more >
Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

05/02/2019Flying Banana reaps the fruit of its labour

Steve Quinby, Network Rail’s head of data collection, gives us the rundown on the state-of-the-art ‘Flying Banana’ train. ... more >
Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

05/02/2019Introducing the new Passenger Assist app

Jacqueline Starr, managing director of customer experience at the Rail Delivery Group, explains how a new app developed for the rail industry wil... more >

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TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

22/01/2019TfN Strategic Transport Plan: not just for transport's sake

Peter Molyneux, Transport for the North’s (TfN’s) strategic roads director, has been leading on the development of the seven economic... more >