Wednesday, 6 May 2020

East West Rail Project Reaches Milestone at Bletchley

Network Rail reached a milestone on the major East West Rail project when they removed huge sections of the 1960s concrete railway flyover in Bletchley, Buckinghamshire.

The flyover was the most prominent railway structure in Bletchley. It was opened in 1961 to allow freight trains to and from Swanbourne yard to avoid the fast lines of the WCML.

 The flyover will be re-built to modern standards
and include new platforms for east - west travel
The flyover will be re-built to modern standards as the rail link between Oxford and Cambridge is re-established.
Tim Shoveller, managing director for Network Rail’s North West and Central region, said: “This is a major milestone for East West Rail – a new railway which will transform connectivity and journey times across the heart of the country. It promises to provide a greener, low carbon transport system which will bring huge benefits to passengers and businesses – driving economic growth and creating opportunities for housing and new jobs.” 

The Secretary of State for Transport has approved our Transport and Works Act Order application for the first rail link in more than 50 years between Oxford, Bedford, Milton Keynes and Aylesbury.

This approval has given us permission to start work on the next phase of the project, which will connect communities and business between Oxford and these large towns.

It will enable:

Two trains an hour each way between Oxford and Milton Keynes
One train an hour each way between Oxford and Bedford
One train an hour each way between Milton Keynes and Aylesbury

The new railway will also connect the Great Western Main Line, Chiltern Main Line, West Coast Main Line and Midland Main Line – providing passengers with much-improved cross-country rail links from East to West:

Phase 2 of the Western Section will upgrade and reconstruct existing and mothballed (no longer in use) sections of line that link Bedford with Bicester, and Milton Keynes with Aylesbury. This phase is being funded by the Department for Transport with a contribution from the East West Rail Consortium.

This improvement project will mean that passengers and freight services can make the journey between Bedford on the Midland Mainline and Bicester on the Chiltern Mainline without needing to travel via London. It will also link Milton Keynes on the West Coast Mainline with London Marylebone on the Chiltern Mainline via Aylesbury.