Edinburgh commuters warned over major disruption ahead of Haymarket rail works

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Commuters and seasonal revellers are being warned of major disruption on Edinburgh’s rail network this weekend due to an upgrade of Haymarket East junction.

ScotRail are advising customers planning on travelling to Edinburgh on these dates to consider making alternative arrangements, particularly on Saturday.

ScotRail say there wil be significant disruption. Picture: TSPL

ScotRail say there wil be significant disruption. Picture: TSPL

The works will run from December 25 to 29, as Haymarket East junction undergoes a major upgrade to renew
rails which move to switch trains from one line to another while over 250m of track is replaced. Normal services will resume on all routes into the city from 10:00am on Sunday.

Liam Sumpter, Network Rail Scotland route director, said: “Haymarket East junction is a key part of Scotland’s Railway and is used by hundreds of trains a day travelling to destinations across Scotland and England.

“We understand the inconvenience this work will cause some passengers, but renewing such a complex piece of our railway cannot be accomplished without a short-term closure of the line.

“Our engineers have carefully planned this project to be completed as quickly as possible and we are working hard alongside our train operators to keep passengers informed of the changes to services during this important investment in the railway.”

Haymarket junction is one of the busiest junctions on Scotland’s railway and is used by up to 30 trains an hour.

The station had to close one platform just before Christmas for a short period while engineers assessed potential damage when heavy gales battered the Capital.

The upgrade will help to improve the reliability of the track and will mean the junction won’t need to be renewed for several decades. It is part of an £8 million programme of enhancements being delivered over the festive period.

Glasgow will see considerable work carried out on 300m of line at Shields Road on the south of the Clyde. A major signalling upgrade will also take place in South Lanarkshire, with the control of signalling on the West Coast Mainline transferred from Motherwell Signalling Centre to the new, £200m West of Scotland Signalling Centre in Glasgow.

More than 2,500 railway staff will be out at sites around the country to complete vital projects – renewing life-expired tracks and junctions, upgrading signalling systems and enhancing our major stations.

The complex project will take several days to complete and has been timed to coincide with the Christmas and Boxing day holidays, when no ScotRail trains run into Edinburgh.

A breakdown of how journeys will be affected over the Christmas period can be found by visiting www.nationalrail.co.uk.