Network Rail has announced a 25 million GBP (29.09m euros | 33.7m USD) plan to rescue the Newport-Gloucester line, which connects south Wales with the west country, midlands and north of England.
The line is also an important diversionary route, maintaining a direct rail link between south Wales and London when the Severn Tunnel is closed.
Running alongside the Severn Estuary, the line is particularly exposed to rain, wind and sea, and more frequent extreme weather has seen it devastated by five major landslips in the last two years alone.
This has led to extended closures and temporary speed restrictions, delaying more than 200,000 trains.
As well as disrupting passengers, this also impacts essential freight services, with 43 freight trains passing through every week. The route also serves ‘Tesco trains’, keeping supermarkets stocked with supplies.
Work on the project, which represents the biggest investment in the Newport-Gloucester line since it opened in the 1850s, will begin next summer.
This will entail removing over 30,000 tonnes of material from the cliff face and installing a mesh and bolt system – using 1,000 soil nails and 9,000 metres of mesh – alongside three miles of track.
This will stabilise the rockface and prevent landslips from affecting the track below.
“We've seen a huge increase in extreme weather events across our network in recent years. Climate change is happening here and now, and across Wales and Borders we’re responding by building a more resilient railway.
“As well as saving taxpayers’ money and reducing delays for passengers and freight – we’re protecting this vital Welsh transport link for generations to come.”
TfL has launched a Power Purchase Agreement tender as the first step for powering the London Underground with 100 percent renewable energy.
The first design images have been revealed for HS2’s maintenance and control centre at the Washwood Heath Depot in Birmingham.
Transport companies have to have resilient cybersecurity systems in place so they can protect their assets and detect and respond to incidents.
Rail upgrades at the end of July will extend platforms and provide power for the Elizabeth Line in preparation for its next stage of opening.
Birmingham City Council has granted planning permission to HS2 Ltd to construct two viaducts in Birmingham.
More people are returning to rail travel post-pandemic according to the latest figures from the UK’s Office of Rail and Road (ORR).
Static testing has begun on the first of Avanti West Coast’s new fleet of trains at Hitachi Rail’s Newton Aycliffe factory.
A new project has begun that will help Reading station lower its carbon emissions and optimise its energy performance by approximately 20%.
HS2 has begun construction of the first of five ‘green tunnels’ that have been designed to blend into the landscape.
Network Rail has moved all signalling equipment from the outdated signal box near Philips Park to Manchester’s modern rail operating centre.
Balfour Beatty VINCI Joint Venture is trialling an electric, high-capacity drilling rig for construction in Warwickshire.
All signals at Birmingham New Street station have now been digitalised to meet 21st Century signalling standards.
Phase two of work on Nexus’ Gosforth Metro depot has been completed with the installation of three more sections of line on the site.
Testing of the Northern City Line’s new digital signalling system has begun, marking a milestone in the East Coast Digital Programme.
HS2 has announced that OpenSpace Group Ltd is using artificial intelligence (AI) and LiDAR sensors to develop future train stations.
Porterbrook has completed successful Level 2 testing on three Class 43 power cars retrofitted with the European Train Control System (ETCS).
Construction of the Colne Valley Viaduct has now started, overseen by HS2’s main works contractor Align JV.
More than one million passengers have used London's new Elizabeth line during its first week of operation.
Jonn Elledge wonders what the largest city in Great Britain is that doesn't have a direct rail link to London and what even is a city?
Balfour Beatty will begin upgrades on London Underground’s Piccadilly line this month, renewing ageing switchboards and installing HV cables.
DB Cargo UK launches new campaign to promote safety excellence throughout the business called 'Together. We’re Safer. Together. We’re DB’
Works have started on the Metro Flow track dualling project that will see an existing freight line upgraded and electrified in Tyne and Wear.
The Elizabeth line has officially opened to the public, increasing central London’s rail capacity by 10 percent.
Network Rail will begin its 145 million GBP (170.93m euros | 182.36m USD) upgrade of the Hope Valley railway line at the end of May.
Alstom has carried out the first testing of a train retrofitted with European Train Control System (ETCS) equipment at Network Rail's RIDC.
Network Rail's new safety scheme will equip more than 15,000 British freight trains with technology to monitor the condition of wheelsets.
ORR has issued authorisations to all Elizabeth line stations due to open on 24 May, confirming the infrastructure is ready for passenger use.
An Office of Rail and Road (ORR) Investigation has led to Network Rail being fined 1.4 million GBP for a health and safety breach.
Network Rail joins with freight rail industry to tackle freight rail delays and safety risks with launch of new programme.
HS2 has reached an agreement to purchase Square One on Travis Street, Manchester from property provider Bruntwood.
TfL's Northern line Bank branch will re-open on 16 May following a 17-week closure as part of the Bank Station Capacity Upgrade project.
The ORR has launched its business plan for 2022/23, with details on how it plans to more closely scrutinise the work of Network Rail.
A new tool has been launched to help measure the social value of rail investments, infrastructure projects and day-to-day operations.
BREAKING: Transport for London (TfL) has announced the opening date for the Elizabeth line (Crossrail).
Stadler has introduced its Class 99 bi-mode Co’Co’ locomotives to the UK, following a successful rollout across Europe.
Jonn Elledge looks at the story behind Andy Burnham's pointed comments about the exorbitant costs of rail fares in Britain.
HS2 has unveiled updated environmentally-friendly designs for the Cubbington, Warwickshire section of the new high speed line.
Priority Seating Week marks five years since Transport for London launched its ‘Please Offer me a Seat’ badge.
Siemens Mobility’s train-borne conditioning monitoring system is one of six solutions being tested in Network Rail’s Lot 1 Operational Trial.
Network Rail will start engineering upgrades on parts of the Dartmoor Line next week, ahead of the introduction of new hourly services.
Network Rail and the Office of Rail and Road are collaborating to increase competitiveness and lower costs in the rail signalling market.
Siemens Mobility and Network Rail are celebrating the milestone of having upgraded 10,000 of 11,700 cab radios to the latest V4.0 version.
Over two thirds of suppliers (67%) have committed to Network Rail’s science-based targets initiative aimed at limiting carbon emissions.
It has now been over 900 days since the UK Government published its Rail Network Enhancements Pipeline reports the RIA.
HS2 has unveiled the final designs for the Thame Valley Viaduct, which will cross the River Thame’s flood plain near Aylesbury.
The ORR has made a number of recommendations after reviewing the safety issues that caused the Class 800 trains to be withdrawn last year.
ScotRail officially entered public ownership on 1 April, with Nicola Sturgeon marking the occasion at Glasgow Queen Street Station.
Network Rail has awarded Alstom the contract to deliver Phase 5 of the London Victoria Re-signalling Programme.
The Office of Rail and Road believes the Light Rail Safety and Standards Board is supporting safety in the light rail and tram sector.
Limited progress is being made regarding the UK Government's rail decarbonisation plans according to a Railway Industry Association report.
Following an investigation into the 2016 Sandilands tram derailment, the ORR has launched prosecutions for breaches of health and safety law.
GTR will continue to operate the Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern rail services, having been awarded a new contract by the DfT.
HS2 has unveiled designs for Chiltern Tunnel’s north portal, which focus on cutting noise from trains as they enter and exit the tunnel.
In this month's column, Jonn Elledge ponders the many places Crossrail could have gone, with decreasing plausibility.
A new report highlights the role of HS2 and high speed rail in general in reducing emissions and ultimately achieving net zero.
Progress on Scotland's Levenmouth Rail Link is moving ahead of plan as the first sections of rail are laid.
The UK is helping finance a new high speed electric railway line in Turkey that will connect Ankara with Izmir.
A competition-winning idea to support the decarbonisation of rail is currently being trialled at a rail freight terminal in Northamptonshire.
LSER has been issued with a penalty notice of 23.5 million GBP by the UK government, following a 'serious' breach of its franchise agreement.
Network Rail has announced an additional £2m in emergency funding to help protect the Cambrian Line from future extreme weather events
The two tunnel boring machines digging the HS2 twin tunnels under the Chilterns have reached the ventilation shaft at Chalfont St Peter.
Rolling stock leasing company Porterbrook and freight operator GB Railfreight are partnering to produce 50 new Greenbrier box wagons.
Northern and Network Rail have launched an appeal for information after vandals threw a log into the path of an oncoming train near Bolton.
The Rail Accident Investigation Branch (RAIB) has released its report into the Stonehaven Derailment, in which three people lost their lives.
HS2 has shared updated designs for its high speed railway terminus station at London Euston, which will be set across three levels.
Alstom has won a £49 million signalling contract as part of Network Rail's Portsmouth Direct upgrade project.
Laser scanners and drones have been used to plan essential maintenance of the 19th century Whalley railway viaduct in Lancashire.
Network Rail has begun construction of the Levenmouth Rail Link, including the removal of the old track bed.
Network Rail has overhauled platforms at Carlisle station for a total sum of 6.5 million GBP, improving drainage and fitting tactile paving.
Hitachi Rail and its subsidiary Perpetuum have won a contract with Network Rail to develop condition monitoring technology in Scotland.
Transport for Wales (TfW) has completed the refurbishment of its fleet of Class 158, as part of a £40m upgrade programme.
Jonn Elledge muses whether train operating companies currently have a perverse incentive to avoid running more services.
Network Rail has introduced specially trained sniffer dogs to track down the metal thieves that cause major delays to services.
Network Rail is continuing major railway upgrades between Manchester and Stalybridge as part of the Transpennine Route Upgrade (TRU).
Alstom has been awarded a 130 million GBP contract as part of Network Rail’s Cambridge re-signalling project.
The Rail Accident Investigation Branch has published its interim report on the Salisbury Tunnel junction collision which occurred in Oct 21.
Network Rail has appointed Rob Morton as its new Route Services Managing Director, taking over from the outgoing Susan Cooklin.
The Mace and Dragados joint venture (MD JV) – HS2’s construction partner for Euston station – is ramping up procurement this month.
Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth confirmed in a statement to parliament on 9 February that ScotRail would transfer into public ownership.
This summer the University of Huddersfield’s Institute of Railway Research will launch Harold 2.0 – a full-scale bogie test rig.
Weekend work will take place during February and March as part of the East Coast Digital Programme to upgrade tracks and signalling.
In his January column, Jonn Elledge muses about how former non-entity Stratford (London) became Britain's busiest station in 2020/21.
Network Rail has released its new Third Adaption Report, which outlines the risks climate change poses to the UK’s railway.
A new piling technology, known as hollow impressed precast energy reusable pile (HIPER), is being trialled at HS2’s Euston station site.
HS2 has signed the Rail Supply Group’s Work Pipeline Visibility Charter and will share its rail systems' technical specifications publicly.
The ‘High Speed Rail (Crewe-Manchester) Bill’ – HS2 Phase 2b Western Leg – will be introduced in parliament today (24 January 2022).
Network Rail is about to start a new trial project to improve lineside biodiversity on the West Highland Line.
As the first phase of the Elizabeth line trial operations comes to an end, passenger services are set to begin in the first half of 2022.
HS2 has chosen TK Elevator to manufacture and install approximately 160 lifts and 130 escalators at its four main stations.
Overnight engineering work begins on 24 January to improve the railway line between Dawlish and Holcombe in Devon.
HS2 archaeologists have excavated a vast roman settlement in Northamptonshire - one of over 100 sites HS2 has examined since 2018.
HS2 has published its Net Zero Carbon Plan, which sets out how it plans to make the project net zero carbon from 2035.
HS2 has revealed the first images of its 1.5 mile-long Greatworth tunnel - one of three ‘green tunnels’ to be built in Bucks and Notts.
Experts from industry and academia are developing an on-board system that can identify low adhesion hazards such as leaves on the line.
Balfour Beatty VINCI (BBV) has launched a recruitment drive to support HS2 construction works planned for 2022 and beyond.
Network Rail has begun track, bridge and station works designed to improve services for travellers between London and Anglia.
Britain: There have been no rail services on Christmas Day for 40 years and once again Network Rail has delivered a swathe of upgrades.
Jonn Elledge gets into the Christmas spirit and does some finger-pointing as to who is really to blame for the state of Britain's railways.
Platform construction has started at Winslow as part of the East West Rail project. 500 precast concrete platform units will be laid.
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