London Northwestern Railway is temporarily withdrawing its hourly service between Crewe and London Euston from tomorrow (Saturday 30 January) following a landslip on the Hillmorton section of the West Coast Main Line.
Heavy rainfall during Storm Christoph earlier this week caused movement of earth on the Hillmorton section of the line, prompting emergency repair work.
Trains are continuing to run over the line, but at a reduced speed - so the hourly service between Crewe and London Euston has been cut in an effort to reduce congesting.
Network Rail estimates the delicate repair work will take more than a week to complete.
A rail replacement bus service will call at affected stations on the route including Stafford, Rugeley Trent Valley, Lichfield Trent Valley, Tamworth, Atherstone, Nuneaton and Rugby.
Passengers are being reminded to adhere to the government's "Stay At Home" advice and to only travel for essential reasons such as work or medical appointments.
Lawrence Bowman, customer experience director for London Northwestern Railway, said: "This is a significant incident which is impacting our customers on the West Coast Main Line.
"As you would expect given the national lockdown, passenger numbers are extremely low at the moment so thankfully the number of customers impacted by this incident will be greatly reduced.
"I am sorry for the disruption caused to anybody who is using this route for essential journeys and I urge any key workers whose ability to get to their job will be impacted to contact us directly."
Ellen Wintle, infrastructure director for Network Rail's West Coast South route, said: “The sheer amount of rain we’ve had recently has caused the ground to slip, so we’re working hard to stabilise the area and put our plan into action for the repairs.
"Because this landslip was spotted early we have controlled the damage which means repairs can be carried out and I thank passengers making essential journeys during this period of national lockdown for their patience."
Any key workers experiencing difficulty attending work as a result of this disruption are invited to email [email protected] providing details of their journey.
Passengers can visit www.lnr.uk/plan for live travel information.