Cornwall’s iconic St Ives rail line extended for additional summer services


There are now even more seats on Cornwall’s finest train journey.

There is now capacity for an additional 2,000 passengers a day on the branch line to St Ives and a more reliable main line to Cornwall following the completion of a number of recent railway improvements.

Over the past nine days, Network Rail and contractor BAM Nuttall have extended the platforms at Lelant and St Erth stations as part of a £1.14million investment in this ever-popular branch line.

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The company said the upgrades will allow GWR to run longer five-car trains to stop at all stations along the St Ives branch line.

Network Rail said the investment will result in a 25% increase in capacity, providing an additional 2,000 seats and a total of 10,000 seats to and from St Ives during peak summer days.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: ‘This additional provision will significantly support business and tourism in and around St Ives, with this iconic railway line carrying large numbers of passengers to and from this picturesque port town , particularly during the busy summer months when thousands of tourists visit this part of Cornwall.

At Lelant, the existing platform has been extended by 13 meters while at St Erth the platform has been extended by 6 metres.

The platform upgrades follow a £3million investment in the St Ives branch line, the largest such investment on the St Ives branch line in 60 years.

Dan Parkes, Network Rail Program Manager – Capital Delivery Building and Civilians, at Network Rail added: ‘The longer platforms will have a really positive impact on supporting business and tourism in and around St Ives. by allowing GWR to operate an additional car during peak hours. summer months.

The extended platform at Lelant station, which was carried out by Network Rail, will allow even larger trains to use the St Ives branch line

“The mainline improvements mean the reliability and lifespan of this stretch of railway has been increased, helping to support regular and reliable rail services to and from Cornwall.

“We appreciate the disruption caused when we have to temporarily close the railway to make these improvements, but we hope that passengers, local residents and visitors will enjoy the benefits of these improvements over the coming months.”

On the mainline between Truro and Penzance, Network Rail’s engineering team has also renewed 1.8km of new track, sleepers and ballast, helping to support the reliability and lifespan of this important mainline railway towards Cornwall, while replacing the Bodriggy Bridge in Hayle, which has expired.

Mark Chorley, Regional Station Manager GWR, West, said: “We have worked hard to ensure people can travel with confidence, and that includes running as many trains and carriages as possible to make additional space.

“Last year the St Ives branch line experienced its busiest period and this work will allow us to provide additional summer services, providing much needed extra capacity.”

Derek Thomas, MP for St Ives, West Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, also gave the project his stamp of approval, adding: ‘Improving capacity on the branch line to St Ives is a vital part of our work to reduce the pressure on traffic in the city center, so this is a big step in the right direction.

“At St Ives we have the ambition to achieve a low carbon transport network and we have appreciated the way Network Rail and GWR have engaged with us as we work towards this common goal.

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