At the start of the busiest weekend of the year so far, with half-term holidaymakers jostling with Valentine city-breakers, many of the millions on the move face transport problems.
A combination of flooding, engineering work on the rail network, together with a resumption of strikes after a few days of respite, will make train travel difficult in the UK.
In addition, airline passengers seeking to get to or from Britain’s busiest airport, London Heathrow, will find the Tube link is closed for the next five days.
These are the key trouble spots.
Flooding between Swindon and Bristol Parkway on the Great Western Railway between London and South Wales is causing long delays and cancellations.
Between Shipley and Ilkley in West Yorkshire, the line remains closed due to a landslip on Thursday.
On the East Coast main line, which connects London King’s Cross with Yorkshire, northeast England and Scotland, LNER has announced cancellations, curtailments and delays on a number of Friday evening trains. The causes: a combination of a shortage of train crew, delays at depots and a fault on the signalling system.
The start of the half-term for many schools in Britain will coincide with widespread engineering work.
London Liverpool Street, hub for the Greater Anglia network, will have no trains on the main lines between the capital and Southend, Ipswich and Norwich. The Elizabeth Line will also be affected. The railway is closed between London and Shenfield in Essex. Passengers are being offered bus replacements services to and from the London Underground station of Newbury Park.
Over the weekend, links on the East Coast main line are being disrupted by work at various locations on the route. Grand Central has cancelled all trains between Sunderland, York and London, and LNER is urging passengers between the capital and Newcastle to travel via Derby or Sheffield on East Midlands Railway.
Work in conjunction with the controversial HS2 project will close the line between Birmingham and Coleshill Parkway, affecting CrossCountry services.
Other lines facing disruption due to engineering work include:
- Preston and Blackpool North (Sunday only)
- Reading-Ascot/Gatwick airport
A strike by members of the RMT union who work for CrossCountry at Craigentinny depot near Edinburgh means many trains will run no further north…