Line "on-track" to re-open

By Richard Wright

Saturday, January 11, 2014


NETWORK Rail says it is confident Isle of Wight trains will be running again on January 20.

The network provider and South West Trains, which runs IslandLine, say work is ahead of schedule at 20 locations across three miles of track between Ryde and Shanklin washed away by the extreme weather.

Two hundred and eighty tonnes of ballast has been laid in the first week - more than half the total imported from the mainland - and 500 metres of signalling cable has been replaced in the Ryde tunnel, which was heavily flooded.

Many new railway sleepers have also been laid.
Contractors are confident work will be complete by January 20, provided there is no more flooding.

As well as repairing the damage caused in December, engineers are working to strengthen key parts of the track to offer protection against future bad weather.

Two crews are working from either end of the three mile stretch of track and repairs are also being carried out at the station platform at Smallbrook Junction and are almost complete at the flood-damaged depot at Ryde St Johns where two trains were badly flood-damaged.

In the meantime replacement bus and taxi services remain in place for around 17 hours a day and Southern Vectis buses on routes 2 and 3 are also accepting rail ticket holders between Ryde and Shanklin.

An IslandLine spokesman said:"We are very pleased with how repairs are going. It's not been easy for our staff or our contractors, they've had some difficult conditions to deal with, but repairs are going

Early estimates put the total cost of repairs at £1 million.

For further information and updates, follow South West Trains on Twitter @SW_Trains, or visit the South West Trains website

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