Passengers who use Euston station to travel to and from London are asked to avoid rail travel for two days over the August bank holiday while works takes place to prepare for HS2.
The Euston shutdown will impact all services on the West Coast main line including trains serving Northampton, Milton Keynes, Watford, Hemel Hempstead and Leighton Buzzard. All services are expected to be extremely busy, passengers are unlikely to get a seat, they may need to change trains and queuing systems may be in place at key stations. Passengers are urged to not travel on 26 and 27 August unless essential.
Those planning to attend cultural or sporting events in the region are encouraged to plan ahead and allow extra time for their journeys.
Euston’s shops and access to the Underground will still be available throughout the bank holiday weekend. London Underground services from Euston will be unaffected by the work.
While trains are not running on the West Coast main line into Euston, Network Rail will also be completing significant maintenance and improvements elsewhere as part of its national Railway Upgrade Plan.
Antonia Buckland, high speed rail sponsorship director for Network Rail, said: “The advice to passengers planning travel to or from Euston station this bank holiday is clear: plan your journeys on days other than Saturday and the Sunday and only travel by train on those days if absolutely essential. If you do travel, trains will be busier than usual, journeys will take longer and unless you have reserved one, you won’t be guaranteed a seat.
“Travel between Scotland, the north west, West Midlands and London on the Saturday and Sunday is discouraged and the whole rail industry - Network Rail, HS2 Ltd and train operators - is working together to give passengers plenty of warning and information about the planned disruption.”
The HS2 preparation work, part of Britain’s Railway Upgrade Plan, involves relocating a key power supply at Euston station to clear the way for future HS2-related work - an important early step towards delivering the first phase of the high speed line between the West Midlands and London.
Rob Carr, programme director, HS2 Ltd, said: “HS2 is working closely with Network Rail to deliver a brand new high speed railway that will boost the UK’s economy and revolutionise rail travel in the UK - increasing capacity and better connecting cities in the Midlands and the north to each other, as well as to London.
“As a part of our extensive construction programme we are working hard to keep disruption to a minimum and appreciate the understanding of all passengers who are affected by the two day closure of Euston station.”
London Midland’s head of West Coast Services, Steve Helfet, said: “The bank holiday works will play a key role in providing the infrastructure and capacity to deal with the growing popularity of rail travel. As a result of the disruption the advice is, avoid travelling this bank holiday and save your trip to or from London for another day. All rail routes between the Midlands and the capital will be busy this weekend.”
Peter Broadley, executive director for customer, operations and safety at Virgin Trains on the west coast, said: “We know upgrade works can impact on people’s travel plans, particularly over a bank holiday weekend. There will be no trains to or from London Euston on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 August, and we expect our services to be extremely popular on Friday 25 and Monday 28 August. If customers choose to travel, we strongly recommend they book their tickets in advance, make a seat reservation and allow longer getting to their destination. Customers should also double-check the National Rail Enquiries and our website before travelling.”
Customers requiring mobility assistance are urged to book help in advance with their train operators. All customers are urged to check on www.nationalrail.co.uk for the very latest travel information. Further detail on these works can be found at www.nationalrail.co.uk/eustonworks.
Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41