Shropshire Star

Confirmed: No train services between Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton until further notice due to landslip

No trains will be able to run between Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton until further notice, due to the landslip in the Wellington area.

Last updated
Engineers are working on the problem.

The Wolverhampton to Shrewsbury section of the line was closed yesterday following the discovery of the landslip.

An image of the area of track affected showed a large section of the bank which appeared to have fallen away.

The situation caused chaos for commuters with services terminating at Wolverhampton or Shrewsbury – depending on which route passengers were travelling.

Coincidentally, planned engineering works were taking place this weekend (March 9 - March 10) between Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton, with rail replacement transport in operation.

But it has now been confirmed the disruption will stretch beyond Monday.

This morning, Network Rail warned the issue might not be resolved until March 28, and have since suggested March 25 might be the date services are up and running again.

"Approximately 5,000 tonnes of material has slipped beneath a 50 metre section of the railway after persistent heavy rainfall over the winter months has weakened the earthwork beneath it," said a Network Rail statement.

"Rail engineers are working around the clock to plan major repairs to re-stabilise the embankment and begin mobilising engineers and equipment on site.

"Before structural repairs can begin Network Rail teams need to cut back and clear vegetation from the railway embankment," the statement continued.

"This critical clearance work will help to understand the scale of the damage, check that there is no risk of further landslips and provide access for materials and equipment. Once this work has been completed, a full plan for repairs will be confirmed."

"Passengers are being advised that the railway is likely to remain closed until at least Monday 25 March."

The landslip is likely to close the line until at least March 25

Adam Checkley, infrastructure director for Network Rail, said: “I’m really sorry to passengers affected by the landslip near Oakengates station which means the line is likely to remain shut for at least two weeks while we plan and deliver complex repairs to the failed railway embankment.

“While the railway is closed I want to urge passengers to check for the latest travel advice.”

Jonny Wiseman, West Midlands Railway customer experience director, said: "This is a significant landslip and I would like to thank our passengers on the Shrewsbury Line for their patience while Network Rail carries out these safety-critical repairs.

"Rail replacement buses will be operating for the duration of the line closure and I urge passengers to check their travel plans carefully and leave extra time for their journeys."

This afternoon, West Midlands Railway also confirmed that the issue would be ongoing from Monday and beyond.

In advice issued on their website they said: "Rail replacement transport will be in operation between Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton in both directions, calling at all stations.

"West Midlands Railway local services will continue to operate between Wolverhampton and Birmingham New Street.

"Transport for Wales services are also affected between Birmingham International and Shrewsbury," the advice continued.

"We're really sorry to all affected customers for the inconvenience and disruption this will cause."

They also issued ticket acceptance advice for people who have to travel between the affected locations.

You can see the extent of the damage caused by the landslip in the Wellington area.

Travel Advice

You can use your ticket on the following services between Wolverhampton and Birmingham, at no extra cost:

  • London Northwestern Railway

  • West Midlands Railway (alternative services)

You can also use your ticket on the following services, at no extra cost:

  • National Express West Midlands Bus Route 5 [Wolverhampton] (NXWM): Wolverhampton - Bilbrook - Codsall

  • Arriva Buses Midlands:

Bus Route 4 [Telford] (Arriva Midlands): Telford - Wellington - Oakengates

Bus Route 9 [Wolverhampton] (Arriva Midlands): Bridgnorth to Wolverhampton

Bus Route X10 - Telford Central to Shrewsbury

Bus Route 55A - Telford Central to Stafford

Bus Route 5E - Telford Central to Stafford NOT calling at Muxton