Timetable changes as £9m flood defence work gets underway

Tuesday 28th August 2018
Services between Crewkerne and Exeter will be disrupted from 15 September and 10 November as Network Rail delivers a £9 million flood defence scheme to better protect the railway line. Two 550-tonne underground culverts are being installed at Axe Valley, reducing the likelihood of flooding from a one in five year risk, to a one in twenty year risk.

Between September 15 and 23, the line will be closed between Crewkerne and Exeter and a bus replacement service will be in operation.  There will also be some changes to services running between Sailsbury and Exeter St Davids between Monday 24 September and Saturday 10 November.

The work, being delivered in partnership with the Environment Agency, will not affect Great Western Railway services between Exmouth and Exeter / Paignton.

Details of the revised timetables and bus replacement services can be found on SWR’s website: https://www.southwesternrailway.com/plan-my-journey/crewkerne-to-exeter-line-closure

A South Western Railway spokesperson said:
“We would like to apologise for customers for any inconvenience caused by Network Rail’s engineering works. The work will, however, make the West of England line more resilient to adverse weather, reducing the risk of disruption caused by heavy rainfall.”

 Rebecca Wells, project manager for Network Rail, said:
“I’d like to thank passengers in advance for their patience as we undertake this vital flood resilience work in the Axe Valley.

“Flooding can be devastating for local communities and it’s crucial we do all we can to protect the railway and keep the train service moving.

“This £9.5 million investment, part of our Railway Upgrade Plan, will significantly reduce the risk of the line flooding in the area, benefiting passengers and the local community for many years to come.”

In addition to this work, Network Rail has scheduled essential maintenance on the Waterloo to Exeter line on Sunday 30th September, Sunday 7th October and Sunday 21st October.
  • Sunday 30th September - the lines between Honiton and Exeter will be closed all day.
  • Sunday 7th October - the lines between Salisbury and Yeovil Junction will be closed all day.
  • Sunday 21st October - all lines in the Salisbury area will be closed Sunday until late afternoon.
If the planned RMT strike on 15 September goes ahead, SWR will publish a revised timetable. Customers are advised to check before they travel.