Big 'thank you' as weekend rail work nightmare ends for residents

Network Rail carried out major works in Poulton
Network Rail carried out major works in Poulton
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Rail bosses have thanked the people of Poulton for their patience during ten weekends of round-the-clock upgrade works.

Network rail used powerful lights and heavy machinery through the night to prepare the line for electrification.

New drainage was installed in Poulton before tracks were realigned beneath a number of road bridges near the station. Improvements to the tracks were also made near Salwick station.

Alison Rowley, programme manager for Network Rail, said: “I’d like to thank passengers for their ongoing patience while we carry out this vital work. The upgrade and wider investment will result in a better, more reliable railway that will serve passengers for decades to come.

“I’d also like to thank local residents for their understanding. The work we carried out near to their homes was at times noisy but I know the local community will experience the benefits that a better railway will bring which will help boost the economy across the north of England.”

The work, being delivered with VolkerRailn and part of the national Railway Upgrade Plan, will see tracks into Blackpool and Kirkham & Wesham stations remodelled, with major changes to platforms. The changes to track, signalling and the platforms will allow trains to run more efficiently and reduce delays, providing better services for passengers.

Sharon Keith, regional director for train operator Northern, said: “The past 10 weeks have been extremely disruptive for our customers and we appreciate the patience and understanding they have shown as the work has progressed.

“Network Rail has, however, made great progress and the work carried out to upgrade the line will complement our own modernisation plans which will see the introduction of new and refurbished trains, improvements at stations across our network and enhancements to the services we offer.”

Further work to complete the upgrade, which will require a closure of the railway, will take place later in the year. Network Rail is working closely with Northern and Virgin Trains to manage this and will have more detail on the impact later in the year.

The entire Blackpool to Preston route will close for 19 weeks from November 11 to complete the upgrade work.