GWR train

Sleeper service returns to South Devon following £37.4m resilience project

Great Western Railway’s (GWR) Night Riviera sleeper service is set to return following the completion of engineering work at Parson’s Tunnel.

The £37.4m resiliency project was recently completed in South Devon to construct a rockfall shelter north of the tunnel.

The railway was closed recently as the work took place to protect the railway against future rockfall.

The project between Dawlish and Holcombe forms part of Network Rail’s wider South West Rail Resilience Programme (SWRRP).

The SWRRP is helping protect the key rail artery to the south west which will help provide a reliable train service for years to come.

Mark Hopwood, GWR Managing Director commented on the return of the sleeper service to South Devon.

Mr Hopwood said: “Our Night Riviera sleeper service is extremely popular and provides an important link between London and Devon and Cornwall.

“We are sorry for the disruption that this vital engineering work has caused.

“By carrying out the work when the Night Riviera sleeper service is quieter means it has caused the least disruption to our customers.

“[This] now means it is ready for the busy spring and summer period.”

Mike Gallop, Network Rail Western Route and Strategic Operations Director spoke on the work done at Parson’s Tunnel.

Mr Gallop said: “I would like to thank passengers for their patience while we have progressed important piling work at Parson’s Tunnel.

“The safety of both our engineering teams and passengers is paramount.

“While it was frustrating to have to temporarily close the railway overnight, this was the only option to enable our teams to complete their work safely.

“This is a critical project for the south west which… will help protect trains against falling rocks along this vital stretch of railway.”


Mike Gallop is set to speak at this TransCityRail South event where rail industry leaders will discuss the huge rail projects and investment on the South's rail network, click here for more information.

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