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Train travel on late May Bank Holiday weekend

We are traveling by train from Penzance to Newbury on Saturday 28 May, with a first class rail pass (if that makes any difference). I assumed, perhaps erroneously, that train travel would be easier on the Bank Holiday weekend than driving - especially as we're headed away from Cornwall rather than to it. However, now I'm worried that railway works might muck us up. Any thoughts from those with more experience as to how we might be impacted? I'm afraid our dates aren't really flexible, and it's too early to see what schedules will be for May.

Posted by
205 posts

You'll need to check planned engineering works on the Nationalrail.co.uk site but a bit nearer the date as it seems to be showing only up until mid-April at the moment. Fist classes passes won't help if there are no trains and they put you on a bus.

Posted by
112 posts

Oh boy - I hope it doesn't come to that! (bus, that is)

Yes, I will check National Rail closer to the date. Thanks!

Posted by
205 posts

I would think they would do most major work ove Easter but just keep checking. Also is the pass purchased? Is point to point possibly cheaper?

Posted by
112 posts

It would be great if most of the works were going to take place over Easter! Yes, the passes are already purchased. We are traveling by train from Edinburgh to York, then from York to Penzance and finally to Newbury. I wanted to go first class mostly because of the length of the journeys, and the cost of the pass was actually far less for the two of us than advance first class fares (based on fares for the next 12 weeks).

I don't have a Plan B at the moment. Part of our timing was based on being able to visit Highclere Castle when it's open, which is over the BH weekend. We already have tickets to Highclere for 29 May, so I guess we'll just hope for the best!

Posted by
28075 posts

My biggest concern at the moment would be the leg into Cornwall. That will be operated by Great Western Railways and the main GWR line is presently being electrified. Because that is a huge project it does have implications on weekends and bank holidays when they get as much work done at a time as they can.

You do need to check. Possessions of the railway need to be advertised 12 weeks in advance and National Rail will have a whole Easter and Bank Holiday area of information as we get closer.

Posted by
205 posts

Yes it's the GWR section that might be the issue, but only might. I travel the York - Cheltenham stretch regularly and there shouldn't be any issues.

Posted by
112 posts

Well, it sounds as though we'll at least have time to make alternate plans if they post the work 12 weeks prior. Thanks so much for your replies.

Posted by
4731 posts

This is on the GWR site - may not affect significantly this journey as such as will be routed via Westbury and the Berks and Hants line (although times might change) but is bank holiday work in the West Country:

Filton

From 28 to 30 May, the railway between Bristol Parkway, Severn Tunnel Junction and Filton Abbey Wood will be closed while Network Rail carry out major signal improvements.

During this time, there will be an amended timetable and buses will replace trains on some routes. We’ll update this page as more details become available.

Posted by
112 posts

Thanks for the link and info, Marco. I hadn't found that on the GWR site. It doesn't sound as though it should affect our journey, and is perhaps encouraging that they've got that posted on their site (maybe that's all they're doing that weekend?). I won't hold my breath, but now I know exactly where to look.

Posted by
112 posts

I hope not! Thanks again for everyone's replies.