About the Railway Upgrade Plan

The Railway Upgrade Plan is the biggest programme of investment since the Victorian era. This investment is needed to maintain and build the railway passengers want and the country needs and to meet future demand.

The £50bn-plus Railway Upgrade Plan includes:

  • £11.6bn being spent on 5,500 new carriages.
  • £31.3bn of renewals and enhancements to the railway infrastructure between 2014 and 2019 by Network Rail, including:
    • electrification of the Great Western Mainline bringing faster, cleaner, more reliable journeys plus new intercity express trains;
    • a series of improvements to the railway in the North of England to allow thousands more trains to run, plus replacement of old Pacer trains;
    • and, completion of the Thameslink Programme which will see a ‘tube frequency’ service with up to 24 trains an hour running through the heart of London.
  • Spending to complete the £14.8bn Crossrail project, fully opening between Reading and Heathrow to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in December 2019 – which will increase central London’s rail capacity by 10%, with trains carrying up to 1,500 passengers running through central London every two and a half minutes at peak times.
  • £7.7bn on HS2 by April 2019 – to lay the foundations for a vital new railway that will create space to run many of the extra trains Britain’s rail network needs.

For further detail on these projects, digital railway and more, please visit Network Rail's Railway Upgrade Plan site at https://www.networkrail.co.uk/our-railway-upgrade-plan/.