Festive work to affect train routes

Commuters travelling through some major train routes can expect disturbance as a result of engineering work during the festive season, it has emerged.

Some of the routes affected will include the West Coast Main Line and the Great Western, due to work in Birmingham and Reading, Berkshire, respectively.

The engineering work, to take place on particular days spread out from Thursday December 23 to Tuesday January 4, will affect up to 15 passenger train firms.

This may mean that a number ofcar insurance holders will then hit the road to reach their destinations during that time.

However, more trains are expected to run during the Christmas and New Year period than the previous one, and fewer replacement buses will be needed, according to theNetwork Rail (NR).

TheNR has said that 10,000 trains more than the 2009/2010 holiday season and more than 2,500 fewer replacement buses will be operational from December 24 to January 3.

Over 90% of networks will not be affected during the 2010/2011 Christmas and New Year season.

This year, theNR is spending £50 million, with almost 5,000 employees working for projects to be completed during the festive period.

Robin Gisby, operations and customer services director,NR, said: "Thousands more trains are running this Christmas time and many thousand fewer replacement buses. Few main lines are affected and this work is a vital investment to deliver a bigger and better railway in the future. Passengers should check the details of their journey before they travel."

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