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Half term railway works defended as replacement bus services step in

PUBLISHED: 14:20 09 February 2018 | UPDATED: 14:20 09 February 2018

Great Yarmouth train station.
March 2015.

Picture: James Bass

Great Yarmouth train station. March 2015. Picture: James Bass

Archant Norfolk © 2015

A decision to replace all train services between Great Yarmouth and Norwich over the half term has been defended, with the message that the works need to be done.

Network Rail will be carrying out improvement to signalling systems across the route and as a result, replacement buses will be in place for nine days.

The decision to time these works for the half term holidays have been criticised by many on social media, however, Steve Hewitt, chairman of the East Norfolk Transport Users Association, feels this was the correct decision to make.

He said: “I feel they have picked the right time to do it. I understand it may be a pain but the work needs to be done, and with it being half term, fewer people will have work commutes to make.

“I have every sympathy for regular rail users because travelling by bus is not ideal for them, but improvements have to be done at some time - some of the signalling systems at the moment are Victorian.”

Mr Hewitt added that when previous work was carried out over the October half term, his association received little to no complaints about the situation.

He added: “It is something that has to be done and there has always been so little investment in our railways over the years, so it is positive something is being done.”

Alongside these works there will also be upgrades made to level crossings on the line, which will see the Brundall crossing closed to vehicles and pedestrians overnight on Sunday, from 6pm until 7am on Monday.

Mick Castle, county councillor for Yarmouth North and Central division, said: “I am really disappointed to see another nine days of disruption on trains but work being done on signalling and replacing manned level crossing should make things better for the future.”

There were also concerns that with regular service not resuming until Monday, February 19, the line closure would prove problematic for football fans travelling to the East Anglian Derby between at Carrow Road on Sunday, February 18.

Trains will be restored from Monday, February 19.

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