Rail bosses say major plans to upgrade the railway between London and Shoebury are expected to take up to four years to complete.

It means there will be rail replacement bus services for passengers in south Essex at some weekends until at least 2024.

Network Rail is spending £80 million on replacing 50 kilometres of wire between Fenchurch Street to Hornchurch and to Pitsea, along the Tilbury line.

Tracks and points are also set to be replaced throughout the next four years between Fenchurch Street and Shoebury, as well as the Tilbury line.

Once replaced, the track and points are expected to last approximately 25 years.

Network Rail says this will result in fewer track faults, fewer closures for maintenance and increased reliability.

Work begins on Sunday, April 4, and passengers are advised to check services before they travel.

Rail replacement bus services will be in operation between Upminster and Pitsea on the Sunday and between Upminster and Grays on Monday, April 5.

Buses will also replace train services between Southend Central and Shoeburyness from 23:55 on Monday, April 5 April.


Ellie Burrows, Network Rail’s route director for Anglia, said: “We are investing over £80 million to completely renew the track and overhead lines between London and Shoeburyness.

“This huge package of work will take time to complete, and I’d like to thank passengers for their patience and support during this time.

“This investment aims to improve reliability on this line for the benefit of passengers, freight customers, communities and the wider economy, for years to come.”

Laura McEwen, Delivery Director for c2c, said: “It’s vital that transport companies work collaboratively whenever possible to improve the passenger experience.

“We are working together with Network Rail to ensure the service during the Easter weekend is as reliable and dependable as our customers have come to expect.

“We thank our c2c customers in advance for their patience while these engineering works take place."