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Home Network Rail Digital signalling work outlined by Network Rail for Northern City Line

Digital signalling work outlined by Network Rail for Northern City Line

Network Rail has detailed work due to be delivered on the Northern City Line to Moorgate.

Over the next three weekends, teams will be installing the latest signalling equipment to ensure that signallers can communicate to current in-cab train technology. Great Northern’s line is expected to have full digital signalling by 2023, although passengers heading into the City of London will notice a difference, Network Rail says, by summer next year.

The infrastructure owner and manager says more work will take place on the scheme over the Christmas period. From after the last service on Christmas Eve until before the first service on Wednesday 29 December, Network Rail’s teams will continue with essential work to upgrade the track and signalling system on the route as part of the East Coast Digital Programme. With no timetabled train services on Christmas Day and Boxing Day on this part of the railway, Network Rail is taking the opportunity to make major progress on the project, to reduce disruption at busier times.


Because the work is complex, Network Rail says some services will need to change in the approach to Christmas. For improvements to take place safely, the section of the line between Finsbury Park and Moorgate will be closed and trains will divert into King’s Cross on:

  • Saturday 20 and Sunday 21 November
  • Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 November
  • Saturday 4 and Sunday 5 December
  • Monday 27 December and Tuesday 28 December

Travellers are advised to plan ahead and allow plenty of time.

Network Rail’s Director, industry partnership digital, Toufic Machnouk, said: “We’re continuing to make progress on the Northern City Line and the work over Christmas will be an important step towards bringing a more modern, reliable railway for passengers.

“We want to thank passengers for their continued patience. Trains are being diverted to keep people moving and we advise passengers to check their journey and allow extra time.”

Customer services director for Thameslink and Great Northern, Jenny Saunders, said: “We’re delighted with this investment to replace the ageing signalling system on our popular route into the City of London with the latest in cutting-edge digital technology.

“Closing the line for vital work such as this is never an easy decision but with trains diverted into King’s Cross, passengers will still be able to reach Moorgate, using their tickets on the Tube or 271 bus.”     

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