May Day rail investment programme delivers better, more reliable railway for passengers in the South East

May Day rail investment programme delivers better, more reliable railway for passengers in the South East

(Network Rail Image)

Britain’s commuters returned to work today on a better, more reliable railway thanks to the efforts of Network Rail’s orange army, who worked round-the-clock to improve the network over the bank holiday weekend.


More than 11,000 engineers worked through the long weekend, delivering another slice of Network Rail’s Railway Upgrade Plan, which will provide a bigger, better, and more reliable railway for passengers and businesses across Britain.

The weekend marked the culmination of a £44m scheme to replace the signalling – the system that controls the safe movement of trains – between Balham and Streatham on the Brighton Main Line.

This project saw the complete replacement of more than 50 signals, dating from the 1970s, and control was moved from Victoria to our new control centre at Three Bridges.

Network Rail’s area director Steve Knight said: “Our engineers and our contractors, Atkins, did a fantastic job this weekend, under considerable pressure. Hundreds of trains run on those tracks every day and by replacing the signalling system we can continue to improve their reliability and improve the journeys of the millions of passengers who travel on the Brighton Main Line each year.”

Mark Carne, Network Rail chief executive, said: “I would like to thank passengers for their understanding while we worked to improve the railway over the long weekend, part of the £40bn we are spending to keep passengers and freight moving. I am proud of the efforts of our engineers who worked tirelessly to deliver another slice of our Railway Upgrade Plan aimed at providing better, more reliable journeys for passengers and businesses across Britain.”


In addition to the work at Balham this Bank Holiday, work took place elsewhere on Network Rail’s South east Route at Abbey Wood, south east London, in connection with Crossrail; follow-up work to the major signalling project in the Medway Towns in Kent, track renewals near Dover, Kent, and around Battersea Park.


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Balham-Resignalling work. (Network Rail Images)