The massive upgrade work to boost capacity at London Waterloo by 30 per cent has been extended after a partial train derailment last week.
Network Rail announced today that platforms 1 to 14 will be shut for an extra day, from Thursday 24 August, and then throughout the bank holiday weekend, with fewer than half of normal weekday services operating on Thursday 24 and Friday 25 August.
Passengers have been warned to expect significant disruption and a very reduced service if they have to travel to or from the station during that time.
The extended closure had been planned from next Friday before the works began, but the Thursday was tagged on as a result of last week's problems at Waterloo. Travellers were advised to avoid the station altogether after a train partially derailed last Tuesday.
Platforms 1 to 10 had been closed since 5 August to allow for the lengthening of platforms, but the derailment meant trains were unable to access 13 of the station's 24 platforms.
Network Rail said the upgrade works are still on track to wrap up on time though, with all platforms at the station planned to reopen on Tuesday 29 August.
A Network Rail spokesperson said:
We’re committed to delivering this project on time for our passengers. That is why we have brought forward the planned extended bank holiday closure by 24 hours following the partial derailment of a passenger train earlier this week at the station.
This is not a decision we have taken lightly and we always said we would monitor the project very closely after the partial derailment to check for any impacts.
We apologise to our passengers for the added disruption to their journeys and thank them for their patience. This all about delivering a bigger better Waterloo station fit for the 21st century.
Passengers are now being advised to make alternative travel arrangements across South West Trains routes, which will now be known as South Western Railway after FirstGroup and MTR took over the franchise, from Thursday 24 August, up to and including Monday 28 August.