Work to improve access to Wymondham town centre, as well as vital maintenance to the railway, will mean six consecutive days of rail replacement from Saturday 21 – Thursday 26 October 2023.
Housing developers are constructing a brand new subway under the railway as part of the planned growth in South Wymondham. The works will significantly enhance walking and cycling facilities to the rail station and the town centre.
The new subway for pedestrians and cyclists will be located between Wymondham station and the Station Road railway bridge. It will allow the existing footpath under Station Road bridge to be removed, helping to enhance traffic flows for motorists.
Enabling works for the building of the subway will be taking place in October 2023, with construction anticipated to be completed by the end of 2024, subject to necessary statutory approvals.
No road closures are planned for the works this October, but Greater Anglia and East Midlands Railway trains won’t be able to run on part of the line between Norwich and Cambridge / Stansted Airport / Liverpool Lime Street. This means that from Monday 23 – Thursday 26 October, there will be a stopping rail replacement bus service between Norwich and Thetford, and a direct rail replacement bus service between Norwich and Ely.
Network Rail is also carrying out engineering works on the railway during Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 October, making six consecutive days of rail replacement in total. Over this weekend, Greater Anglia will be running a rail replacement bus service between Thetford and Ely. On the East Midlands Railway route between Norwich and Liverpool Lime Street, rail replacement buses will run between Norwich and Peterborough. The same rail replacement services will be in place on the weekends of 7-8 and 14-15 October.
The housing developers delivering the new subway in Wymondham are being supported by Network Rail’s specialist asset protection team, which supervises any works being carried out by external organisations on or near the railway. This is to help keep everyone safe, as well as protecting the rail infrastructure while projects are being completed.
David Kang Gil, Network Rail Anglia head of asset protection, said: “We support external projects that will benefit our local communities wherever we can, and the new subway will make a real difference to Wymondham. We’re really sorry that passengers will face disruption in October, but it’s fundamental to allow the subway scheme to move forward, and to give us time to carry out important reliability upgrades on the railway itself.”
James Reeve, Greater Anglia area customer service manager, said: “The new subway will make it easier for people to travel around the town and access Wymondham station, and the preparatory work in October is essential.
“A rail replacement service will run while the work takes place and passengers are advised to check before they travel and allow more time for their journey. We would like to thank customers for their patience and understanding while this work is carried out.”
Dave Meredith, East Midlands Railway customer services director, said: “We would like to thank customers for their patience while these important works take place. We are advising customers to check how the rail replacement service might impact the length of time needed to complete their trip. More information is available on our website.”
Mark Chapman, technical and planning director at Taylor Wimpey East Anglia, said: “We are delighted to be able to start work on the new subway, which will benefit so many people in and around Wymondham. We are grateful to the team at Network Rail Anglia for supporting us to ensure that the works to the subway are efficiently progressed. We look forward to the subway being completed and opened to the public later next year.”
Robert Church, managing director of Vistry Eastern, which is building new homes under its Bovis Homes brand at Birch Gate in Wymondham, said: “We are working closely with Network Rail and the train operators to ensure that the enabling works for the building of the subway in Wymondham are completed with minimum disruption to rail services.
“Once completed, the subway will offer improved pedestrian access to the town centre for people living to the south of the railway line and encourage journeys on foot or bicycle.
“We are providing this key infrastructure improvement alongside a £2 million package of investment in local facilities which is being made as part of the planning agreement for the wider development of new homes.
“We would like to thank passengers and local people for their patience and understanding as the work is carried out.”