Railway owners Network Rail have significantly scaled back plans for maintenance works that would have seen the busy line between Watford and Euston closed for 16 days this summer.
The decision comes following a detailed review of the works which revealed that the two proposed closures – one in August this year and another nine day closure in February 2015 – were no longer necessary.
A statement released by Network Rail said: “Following feedback from passengers and discussions with industry partners, a thorough review of the project has meant it has been possible to amend the planned work to be carried out over three weekends in August and two weekends in February, reducing the levels of disruption to passengers.”
The announcement of the line closure late last year had left commuters wondering how they would be able to get to work and train operator London Midland had issued advice to avoid travelling all together if possible.
The works are part of an £81 million investment to improve the reliability and punctuality on one of the busiest sections of railway in Europe.
The revised dates for works are Saturday, August 9 to MOnday, August 11, Saturday, August 16 to Monday, August 18, Saturday, August 23 to Tuesday, August 26, Saturday, February 14 to Monday, February 16 and Saturday, February 21 to Monday, February 23, 2015.
The work dates that remain unchanged are Saturday, May 3 to Monday, May 5, Wednesday, December 24 to Monday, December 29 and Friday, April 3 to Tuesday, April 7, 2015.