Early warning to rail passengers of Easter disruption at station
PASSENGERS travelling on the west coast line face major disruption during the Easter weekend as Glasgow Central, Scotland's busiest station, is to shut for major signalling work.
The closure on 7-8 April, the first in the station's 128-year history, is one of two phases of major work to take place there. Many services will also be cancelled over the weekend of 10-11 March.
The work is of part of an 85 million investment in the station and will include a revamping of signalling works, the creation of a new engineering access point and refurbishment of a signalling gantry.
First ScotRail have said that passengers using Central station will benefit from improved reliability and performance as a result of the work.
But rail watchdogs warned that travellers intending to use services should brace themselves for delays and inconvenience.
David Simpson, the route director, said: "The upgrades are essential to improve the reliability and performance of all trains arriving and departing from Glasgow Central. They will provide a welcome modernisation of the station infrastructure and improve the long-term performance of rail travel in Scotland.
"We have carefully planned this work over the past year, and our engineers will work round the clock to carry out these improvements."
Buses will take passengers affected by cancelled services to their destination, or to connecting rail stations.
Steve Montgomery, First ScotRail's operations and safety director, said: "These works will involve a high number of replacement buses, and it will be a major exercise to manage passengers. We are confident the planning on travel alterations will keep inconvenience to a minimum."
But he added: "Clearly, some journeys will take longer than normal and passengers should allow more time for travel."
Robert Samson, spokesman for the rail watchdog Passenger Focus, warned they expected the closures to affect thousands of travellers. "Closing the busiest station in Scotland will undoubtedly have a massive impact on passengers," he said.
"Obviously, the work will improve services going in and out of Glasgow and improvements are needed."
Rail passengers will also experience disruption between 6-10 April at Glasgow's Queen Street station.
And between 7-9 April, services between Edinburgh and Perth, Edinburgh and Dundee and Edinburgh and Inverness will be diverted because of work at Inverkeithing.
Replacement buses will provide an alternative service from Inverkeithing to Perth and Dundee.
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