National Rail Operators Issue Travel Tips For Christmas And The New Year28/11/2003
National rail operators today advised passengers who intend to travel by train over the Christmas and New Year period to follow three simple steps before doing so.
Plan your train journey as soon as possible by checking timetable information. This information is available by calling National Rail Enquiries (08457 48 49 50) or checking the internet site www.nationalrail.co.uk which provides links to all train operating companies and retailing websites.
To ensure a comfortable journey for longer distance travellers, reservations where available are recommended between Friday 19th December and Sunday 4th January 2004.
On the day prior to travelling, check if your route will be affected by engineering work either by calling National Rail Enquiries, checking the Today’s Train Running Information page on the National Rail website - www.nationalrail.co.uk, or by calling the local train operator.
ATOC Director General, George Muir said: "The Christmas and New Year period is traditionally a busy time for the railways, especially the long distance operators. It is also a period when major infrastructure works are carried out by Network Rail. For this reason I advise passengers to make use of the information systems available to them to ensure a comfortable journey and avoid any unnecessary inconvenience."
For more information call: ATOC Press Office on 020 7904 3010
Note to Editors – National Rail operators have more detailed summaries of their services on their websites, at stations or through a media release. A list of engineering work sites over Christmas and the New Year is now available from Network Rail.
The following is a general summary of train services over the Christmas and New Year period.
Saturday, 20 December to Tuesday, 23 December
Normal services will run as scheduled.
Wednesday, 24 December
A normal weekday service, however, many operators’ wind down services earlier than usual - between 2000hrs and 2200hrs. Sleeper services will not run.
Thursday, 25 December
Heathrow Express will operate a frequent service between Paddington station and Heathrow Airport. Gatwick Express operate a coach replacement service, departing at half hourly intervals between 06:00 and 16:00 (final coach at 16:45) from London Victoria and between 06:00 and 17:00 from Gatwick. Journey time will be approximately 70 minutes. No other train services will run.
Friday, 26 December
Generally train services will not operate except.
ScotRail. An amended service will be in operation in the Strathclyde area.
Heathrow Express. Frequent Airport services between London Paddington and Heathrow Airport
Gatwick Express. Frequent Airport services between London Victoria and Gatwick Airport.
Stansted Express. Frequent Airport services will operate between London Liverpool Street and Stansted Airport.
c2c. A half hourly service from 09.35 to 19.35 will operate between London Fenchurch
Street and Southend Central.
South Eastern. An hourly service from 08.33 to 20.33 will operate between London Victoria and Orpington. In addition, from 08.54 to 20.54 an hourly service will operate between London Charing Cross and Ashford International And an hourly service from 1003 to 2103 will operate between London Victoria and Gillingham
South Central. A half hourly service from 08.00 to 22.00 will operate between London Victoria and East Croydon via Selhurst.
Thameslink. A half hourly service from 08.00 to 23.00 will operate between Flitwick and West Hampstead, and between London Blackfriars and Brighton.
Eurostar. Operate a Sunday service
Friday, 27 to Tuesday, 31 December
All train companies will run services during this period. Passengers should check with NRE or their local operator on the type of service. (i.e. normal, Saturday, Sunday or Bank Holiday timetable). On New Year’s Eve, some operators in south-east England will schedule extra services to carry people in and out of London. Some operators outside the capital may wind down services earlier than scheduled.
Thursday, 1 January
No service for ScotRail and Valley Lines except for the Cardiff Central to Maesteg service. All other train companies will run either a Saturday, Sunday or Bank Holiday service.
Friday, 2 January
Train companies operate either a weekday or Saturday service.
Saturday, 3 January onwards
Normal timetables are resumed.
National Rail Enquiries (NRE)
Anyone intending to travel is advised to check their arrangements with NRE on 08457 48 49 50. NRE will be able to provide callers with details of timetable and fare information. NB: NRE will be closed from midnight 24 December to midnight 25 December.
Reservations will be available on most long distance trains and travellers are urged to reserve a seat to ensure a comfortable journey. Operators that accept bookings include Anglia Railways, Hull Trains, GNER, First Great Western, First North Western, Midland Mainline, ScotRail, South West Trains, Virgin Trains, Wales & Borders, and Wessex Trains.
Weekend First on longer distance journeys will be available between Saturday 27th December and Sunday 4th January inclusive.
SuperSaver tickets will not be valid from Monday, 15 December 2003 to Friday, 2 January 2004 inclusive.
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