Major upgrades on the West Coast main line to improve future rail journeys for passengers and freight services is now complete.

The railway between Rugby and Stafford reopened on Tuesday 23 January, after essential signalling improvements to the West Coast main line through Staffordshire. The project has been ongoing since 2017, but over the four-day closure, Network Rail has completed upgrading; 39 signals, 124 axel counters (the system used to detect if a section of track is clear or unoccupied) and combined and moved Colwich and Trent Valley workstations to be based from the Rugby Rail Operating Centre as part of a £85m investment to improve future journeys on this important rail route through the West Midlands.

Network Rail has thanked passengers for their patience during the essential investment over the four days. James Dean, Network Rail route director for the West Coast South Route, said: “We know this work has meant longer journeys for passengers travelling over the weekend, so I’d like to thank everyone impacted for bearing with us while we carried out essential upgrades.

“We worked closely with train operators to keep people on the move, and now work is complete, this vital section of the West Coast main line will continue to deliver safe, reliable journeys for passenger and freight services.” With work now complete, a normal timetable has resumed through the West Midlands from the start of service this morning, Tuesday 23 July.

People are encouraged to always plan their journeys and check before travelling.