5 minute read – Network Rail upgrades track in Grantham over August Bank Holiday weekend

©Network Rail

Network Rail upgrades track in Grantham over August Bank Holiday weekend – vast majority of services continue as railway welcomes passengers back

  • Essential work in Grantham will bring smoother, more reliable journeys
  • Work planned to minimise disruption as much as possible with some changes to LNER services on Saturday 28 August
  • Over 95% of Britain’s rail network will be open for business over August Bank Holiday weekend as railway welcomes back passengers

Network Rail is upgrading the track in Grantham over the August Bank Holiday weekend to bring smoother journeys for passengers travelling on the East Coast Main Line.

Overnight on Saturday 28 August, teams will be lifting and replacing the track on a section of the line between the north of Grantham and Claypole level crossing, near Newark-on-Trent. The ballast – stones which support the track – and the wooden sleepers will also be replaced.  

As well as bringing smoother, more reliable journeys for passengers, this work will also reduce the amount of maintenance which is required in future.

Network Rail has carefully planned the work which is taking place over the Bank Holiday weekend. Over 95% of Britain’s rail network will be open for business as usual, meaning passengers can reconnect with family, friends, and their favourite holiday destinations.

Most of the work in Grantham will be carried out overnight when there are no trains running on the line. There will be some changes to LNER services on Saturday 28 August:

  • The 19:45 Leeds to London King’s Cross and the 20:30 London King’s Cross to Leeds services will not run.
  • The 21:00 London King’s Cross to Newcastle service will depart earlier than usual. It will also be diverted, extending journey times.
  • The 22:00 service from London King’s Cross to Leeds will also set off earlier than usual and journey times will be extended.

Passengers can find out how their journeys will be affected with their train operator, via National Rail Enquiries, or by following #AugustBHWorks on Twitter.

Paul Rutter, Route Director for Network Rail’s East Coast route, said: “This vital work to upgrade the track in Grantham will bring smoother, more reliable services for passengers. We’re carrying out these improvements now to reduce the amount of maintenance and repair work required in future, helping to prevent disruption to services.  

“As we welcome passengers back to the railway, the vast majority of services are running as normal. We’re advising people to check their journey and allow plenty of time.”

People are advised to follow government guidance and wear a face covering in busy indoor settings, unless they are exempt. With good ventilation systems on trains, extra cleaning and improved information about quieter times, passengers can continue to travel with confidence.

Doncaster station transformed to give visitors a warm welcome to the region

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is celebrating the completion of work at Doncaster Station, which has seen the building transformed for the benefit of customers and the community, making a real statement in the regeneration of the town.  

The station has been given an impactful and brighter entrance, with feature lighting that is more sustainable and in keeping with the station’s heritage, created within the ceiling domes of the main concourse. Lights on either side of the concourse have also been restored, adding to the new light and fresh feel of the station.

With Doncaster Station classified as a Grade Two listed building dating from 1938 and the art deco period, the enhancement project has been meticulously planned to respect the building’s legacy, with the Railway Heritage Trust providing invaluable support throughout. 

Doncaster Station concourse_LNER.JPG

Externally, the former 1970s canopy has been replaced with a sleek glazed canopy, running across the front of the station to West Street car park. LNER, which manages the station, has invested £1.1 million into the improvement project.

Claire Ansley, LNER Customer Experience Director, said: “Doncaster Station has played an important role in the region for decades and we value its rich history. That is why we have been extremely careful in making these improvements to ensure they enhance the customer experience whilst being respectful of the building’s heritage and architectural qualities.

“The transformation, specifically to the entrance concourse, is striking and we’re delighted to have received a positive reaction from all parts of the community who use the station.“

The project is just one part of a series of improvements at the station, with the stairs and subway next to be refurbished.

Grantham Lifesaver Recognised With Prestigious Award

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) has recognised Scott Goodson, Duty Team Leader at Grantham Station, with a Lifesaver Award after he intervened to assist a distressed member of the public.

In August 2020, Scott was leading the Grantham Station team into the early evening shift when he observed a person moving towards the edge of the platform. Scott made his way to the area and attempted to engage them in conversation, realising straight away just how vulnerable they were.

Undeterred by the individual’s initial unresponsiveness, Scott continued to talk calmly and invited them to join him for a cup of tea. It was this gesture that successfully persuaded the individual away from the platform edge and into the safety of the station building. 

Recognising that professional help was required, Scott contacted the local crisis team and established that the individual had been reported as ‘missing’. Scott then called the police, who arrived at Grantham Station and were able to coordinate additional longer-term support.

On investigating the incident further and reviewing CCTV the individual’s actions clearly showed there could have been an incredibly sad outcome. Scott had undoubtedly made a very timely and important intervention.

Looking back on the event, Scott, who has worked for LNER for two years, said: “A combination of experience, training and most importantly my instincts told me I needed to check on the person to see if they were okay. It’s frightening to think about what could have occurred if I hadn’t done such a simple thing as starting a conversation.”

Claire Ansley, Director of Customer Experience at LNER, said: “It is a sad fact that the railway is no stranger to the worst effects of mental ill health. LNER works closely with organisations such as Samaritans and our charity partner the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) which works to prevent suicide, to raise awareness of mental health and to deliver training to our  teams about how to manage situations such as the one encountered by Scott.

“Thankfully on this occasion, Scott’s awareness and composure meant he was able to save a life and we felt it was important to recognise his actions with this Lifesaver Award. His experience is a brilliant example of how we must all look after ourselves but also those around us.”

For more information about how LNER work to support CALM, please visit https://www.lner.co.uk/about-us/the-calm-zone/

LNER NAMEPLATES AUCTION RAISES MORE THAN £40,000 FOR CHARITY

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) nameplates have raised £41,000 for charity, after famous names from the iconic Intercity High Speed Train (HST) fleet attracted interest from around the world at an online auction.

43308 Highland Chieftain proved most popular among enthusiasts, selling for £13,900, with 43300 Craigentinny and one Crest fetching £6,500. Auctioneers claim these are record prices for Class 43 HST nameplates.

The proceeds from the auction will go to LNER partner charity, the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM), in support of suicide prevention.

David Horne, Managing Director of at LNER, said: “We are delighted these symbols of rail history have generated such interest and raised much needed funds for CALM.

“CALM has seen record demand for its helpline services this year with teams answering more than 70,000 calls and chats since lockdown in March. This money will help support even more people during these uncertain times.”

Seven nameplates were up for auction and all sold:

  • 43308 Highland Chieftain – £13,900
  • 43300 Craigentinny and one Crest – £6,500
  • 43238 National Railway Museum 40 Years 1975-2015 – £6,100
  • 43290 MTU Fascination of Power – £4,600
  • 43257 Bounds Green – £4,100
  • 43274 Spirit of Sunderland – £4,100
  • 43208 Lincolnshire Echo – £1,700

The proceeds of the auction will be added to the £230,000 LNER has already raised for CALM since the start of the partnership in October 2018.  The charity works to prevent suicide, the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK and the cause of 18 deaths a day.

Simon Gunning, CEO of CALM said: “LNER has been absolutely brilliant championing the CALM cause and raising funds for our vital helpline services. This auction is another example of its generosity.

“A lot has happened over the past eight months and the pandemic has affected our lives in many ways, which is why people are needing CALM and our helpline services more than ever.”

The nameplates, celebrating the heritage of the East Coast route, were auctioned on 14 November 2020 by G.W Railwayana Auctions. Further information can be found at  www.gwra.co.uk 

ENTHUSIASTS CAN OWN A PIECE OF LNER’S HISTORY

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is offering people the chance to own a piece of its history this weekend (14 November) as nameplates are auctioned in aid of charity. 

The nameplates 43308 Highland Chieftain, 43300 Craigentinny and one Crest, 43238 National Railway Museum 40 Years 1975-2015, 43208 Lincolnshire Echo, 43257 Bounds Green, 43274 Spirit of Sunderland and 43290 MTU Fascination of Power will go up for auction on the 14th of November 2020, with proceeds going to LNER’s partner charity, the Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM). 

The sought-after memorabilia includes some famous names from the iconic Intercity 125 High Speed Train fleet that was retired from the East Coast route last year. 

David Horne, Managing Director at LNER, said: “We hope these pieces of our proud past, that celebrate the heritage of LNER’s route, will now support our communities as well.

“Our partner charity CALM has seen record levels of demand for its helpline services during the Coronavirus pandemic, which makes the proceeds of this auction even more important.

“Funds raised from the auction will be added to the £230,000 we have already raised for CALM through fundraising activities and customers donating ‘Delay Repay’ claims, further aiding the charity to help save lives and be there for those who need the support.”   

CALM works to prevent suicide, the single biggest killer of men under 45 in the UK and the cause of 18 deaths a day.

Enthusiasts have been able to preview the collection of nameplates since July and auctioneers, G.W.Railwayana Auctions, say they’ve already seen significant interest in advance of the sale.  

Further information about the auction can be found online: www.gwra.co.uk 

LNER RECOGNISES THOSE WHO HAVE SERVED

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is proud to reveal a special Azuma train in recognition of all those who have served and who continue to serve ahead of Remembrance Day.

Azuma train (800 101) has been decorated with a dedicated poppy design alongside ‘To those who have served, Thank You’ text on either side of the front and back of the train.

The train can be seen along the East Coast route from Monday 2 November and will carry the special commemorative design throughout the rest of the month.

Earlier this year, LNER achieved the Armed Forces Covenant Silver Award as part of the Employer Recognition Scheme (ERS). The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise from the nation to those who serve or who have served, and their families which ensures they are treated fairly and are not disadvantaged in their day-to-day lives.  

From Thursday 5 November 2020 the newly launched Veterans Railcard can be used by those who have served in Her Majesty’s Armed Forces to secure one third off most rail travel.

LNER Poppy Azuma (800 101) .JPG

LNER MARKS £230,000 RAISED FOR CAMPAIGN AGAINST LIVING MISERABLY WITH
NEW LIMITED-EDITION AZUMA FACE MASK

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) has passed a milestone fundraising target for charity partner Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM) with more than £230,000 now raised for the mental health charity since October 2018.


LNER customers and staff united to raise £200,000 for CALM through a combination of fundraising events, along with the Delay Repay Donation scheme pioneered by LNER in Since launching, more than £138,000 has been donated by the 3,234 customers who have opted to gift their Delay Repay compensation to the charity.


Following the requirement of face coverings to be worn on public transport due to the Coronavirus pandemic, LNER launched a series of regionally inspired face coverings, with proceeds from sales going to CALM.


To mark World Mental Health Day 2020, LNER is now launching the latest in the series of regionally inspired face masks, with a design featuring the state of the art Azuma train.


Following a social media poll allowing customers to vote on their preferred design, the new mask features the iconic train in the LNER vibrant colours of the livery.


It is expected this design will be the most popular yet and will raise even greater funds for CALM from sales of the Azuma mask. To date, almost £2,500 has been raised for the charity from sales of the masks.


LNER Director of Communications, Kate McFerran, said: “We know how passionate our communities are about our trains and our destinations along the LNER route. We are sure that the new Azuma design will be hugely popular with our customers and colleagues who travel on our route. Whilst we all adjust to these new ways of going about our daily lives, including using our services, we continue to ensure that customers can travel safely and in style.


We’re immensely proud of how our colleagues and customers have rallied together to show support for CALM since the launch of the partnership and would like to thank everyone who has donated their time or money to supporting the cause.”


In addition to the new design, customers can still also select a uniquely-designed Scottish thistle, Tyne Bridge, Yorkshire Rose or London Eye face mask, with proceeds going to the official LNER charity partner, CALM. The masks have been locally produced and distributed as LNER continues to support communities and businesses on the East Coast.


Ben Hawley, Marketing and Communications Director at the Campaign Against Living Miserably said, “LNER have been staunch supporters of our life-saving work over the years, and we remain extremely grateful for their continued support. In these uncertain times people are needing CALM and our helpline services more than ever.”


The launch of the LNER face mask designs is just one of a series of measures by LNER to support CALM. In addition to the funds raised by the face mask sales, 120 LNER colleagues are trained as CALM warriors to support those struggling with their mental health. An additional £80,000 has been raised by LNER colleague fundraising and LNER initiatives, taking the total raised to £232,913 to date.

Restored Zero Mile post returns to York

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is proud to reveal the restored Zero Mile Post has returned to York Station.


Mile posts were a historic system used by railway companies to measure lines and calculate fares, with ‘Zero Posts’ marking the start of where each line was measured from.


Ten lines or routes shared a Zero Post located at the centre of York Station although it is thought that the original may have been melted down as part of the wartime drive for scrap metal.


A replica post which was installed in 2004 to celebrate the 150th anniversary of The North Eastern Railway has now been reinstalled after being restored to reflect York’s rich railway heritage.


LNER Managing Director David Horne, said: “LNER is proud of our heritage in York, a city with a rich history steeped in the railways.


“It is wonderful to see the Zero Post return to its home in York station and looking so magnificent. Although distances between our destinations have not changed, the speed, comfort and service offered to our customers has been transformed. It is great York remains home to this important piece of history from the era of the North Eastern Railway.”


The North Eastern Railway was formed in 1854 and inherited all sorts of mile posts, sometimes measured from unlikely places. In 1905 it was decided to re-measure all North Eastern Railway lines using a standard system.


Chairman of the North Eastern Railway Association, Neil Mackay, said: “The post became a celebrity after it was installed, though many were puzzled by the line initials shown. Our association is delighted to have helped maintain the links between today’s railway and its predecessors.”


The Zero Post has been cleaned and repainted by the North Eastern Railway Association and is now displayed in the original location near the stairs between platforms 5 and 9.

Boost for LNER customers as services return

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is to introduce a number of extra services to the existing timetable from next week. This will add more than 1,600 seats for customers each weekday compared to the current timetable.

The increase, which comes into effect from Monday 7 September 2020, will see extra services, including 10 Anglo-Scottish services, return to the timetable. Destinations such as Peterborough, Doncaster, York and Newcastle are all set to benefit from additional services as a result.


The September timetable follows the recent introduction of a new London to Bradford service as well as the return of services to destinations such as Lincoln and Harrogate.


LNER Managing Director, David Horne, said: “The changes that we’re introducing from 7 September will increase our service levels from around 75 per cent up to 85 per cent of our pre-Covid timetable, so it’s a significant step forward as we welcome more passengers back to our services


“These additional services will also provide a welcome boost to communities along our route, such as Peterborough, York and Newcastle, which are just some of the destinations set to benefit.


“We are seeing more people travelling on our trains and these extra services will ensure that we can maintain social distancing in the coming weeks. We continue to work hard to ensure that travel on our trains is safe, with enhanced cleaning on trains and at our stations, complemented by our reservation-only approach to ensure everyone has a sociallydistanced seat.”


LNER continues to run reservation-only services and is offering a limited catering offer onboard to support customers in maintaining social distancing. Mandatory reservations allow social distancing and give customers peace of mind knowing they will have a seat and be safe onboard throughout the duration of their journey.


Research by the Rail Safety and Standards Board (RSSB) has found the risk of Covid-19 infection being less than 0.01% on an average journey. The analysis has shown the risk of contracting Covid-19 while travelling by train is about 1 in 11,000 journeys. This is equivalent to a chance of less than 0.01%, based on an hour-long train journey in a carriage with no social distancing or face coverings.


The report which was supported by LNER also shows that the risk more than halves if passengers wear a face covering. These have been mandatory when travelling by train since June, unless exempt.


The extra safety measures implemented by LNER to support the safety of customers and staff has been recognised by Visit Britain’s UK-wide industry standard and consumer mark to reassure customers businesses adhere to Government and public health guidance.


An enhanced cleaning regime is also undertaken both on LNER services and at LNER stations along the East Coast route. This is part of the LNER Safer Travel Pledge which also offers:


• Worry-free ticket booking which allows easy changes
• Encouraging the use of e-Ticketing for simpler and speedier access to tickets
• Mandatory seat reservations ensuring a safe number of people onboard


LNER has also developed and launched an easy to use online seat finder tool to help customers identify quieter trains and travel outside of busier times as customer numbers continue to grow.

LNER eases Friday peak to assist with social distancing

London North Eastern Railway (LNER) is easing ticket restrictions on Fridays to spread demand throughout the day, further supporting customers in maintaining social distancing when travelling by train.


The move, which comes into full effect from Friday 21st August, allows customers to purchase Super Off-Peak tickets throughout the entire day on Fridays. Restrictions are being eased on all routes to and from London King’s Cross and Stevenage except for customers travelling between Stevenage and London King’s Cross and vice versa.


It is set to make a big difference to customers, as Fridays are traditionally one of the busiest days of the week with both business and leisure travellers on the move. Whilst demand has not yet reached pre-lockdown levels, Friday services have continued to be some of the most popular.


Suzanne Donnelly, Commercial Director at LNER, said: “Relaxing our restrictions on Fridays allows us to spread demand across the entire day, helping our customers to maintain social distancing, save some money and have more choice about when they travel. Combined with our reservation-only services and the enhanced cleaning of our trains and stations, this will allow us to further provide both a safe and enjoyable experience for our customers.”


Transport Secretary Grant Shapps said: “I very much welcome LNER’s decision to ease ticket restrictions, which will help free up more space for social distancing by giving passengers more choice on when they travel.


“As services begin to return to normal levels and passenger numbers increase, it is our upmost priority to ensure everyone stays safe when travelling, which is why we’ve taken action to make face coverings mandatory on public transport, continued to advise people to travel at quieter times, wash their hands regularly and maintain social distancing, and delivered initiatives to encourage cycling and walking.”


Friday restrictions will remain eased until the 4th January 2021.