Funding. Place Projects - 17 January 2019

£53million Midland Main Line works backed by D2N2 LEP

Part of the Midland Main Line will be temporarily closed this summer (2019) to allow track improvements , as part of a £53million scheme backed by the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership.

The ‘Market Harborough Line Speed Improvement Project‘, will eventually enable trains to travel on the Midland Main Line at higher speeds. Network Rail will install almost two miles of track in a new, straighter alignment as well as new signalling equipment. The project will also mean a vastly improved Market Harborough station; with longer platforms for longer trains (picture shows station platforms under construction), new lifts and a new footbridge, and a better car park.

In order to complete the project, for six days between Tuesday May 28 and Sunday June 2 (inclusive), the track section of the Midland Main Line from Kettering to Leicester will be closed. No train services will run on this part of the line, with coach replacement services and diversionary routes in operation instead. There will also be an overall reduction of East Midlands Trains‘ services; between London St Pancras and Nottingham, and between London St Pancras to Derby and Sheffield, as services will need to use an alternative route to divert around Market Harborough. Services will resume as normal from Monday June 3.

Passengers are strongly urged to check before they travel via the dedicated web page at

The D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership is the private sector-led partnership of business, local authorities, skills and training providers, and community and voluntary services organisations which promotes economic growth across Derby, Derbyshire, Nottingham and Nottinghamshire.

Its resources include more than £250million in Local Growth Fund (LGF) allocation; money awarded via the UK Government to part-fund essential capital and infrastructure projects, which direct benefit the local economy. D2N2 has put £5m of its LGF allocation into the Market Harborough scheme, investing alonsgide neighbouring areas’ LEPs in a project which will improve local transport connectivity.

Rob McIntosh, Route Managing Director for Network Rail, said: “This vital work at Market Harborough will mean changes for all passengers using the Midland Main Line during this time.

“There’s never an ideal time to carry out this type of work and we do appreciate that the work will be disruptive. We are working closely with East Midlands Trains to keep passengers moving and we thank passengers for their patience. This project will make sure we can continue to meet the needs of the communities and economies which our railway serves.”

Tom Goshawk, Capital Projects Manager for the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership, added: “Fast and efficient transport is vital to economic growth. That is why the D2N2 LEP has put £5million of its Local Growth Fund allocation into the Market Harborough Line Speed Improvement Project; funding alongside neighbouring LEPs, Sheffield City Region and the Leicester and Leicestershire Enterprise Partnership.

“The six-day rail closure will allow vital works as part of this £53m project, enabling trains to travel more quickly along this length of the Midland Main Line, with major improvements also to Market Harborough railway station.”

Local Enterprise Partnerships are playing a vital role in driving forward economic growth across the UK, helping to build a country that works for everyone.

That’s why by 2021 Government will have invested over £12billion through the Local Growth Fund, allowing LEPs to use their local knowledge to get all areas of the country firing on all cylinders. UK Government analysis has shown that every £1 of Local Growth Fund invested could generate £4.81 in benefits.

For more on how the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership is using its Local Growth Fund allocation to boost its area’s essential infrastructure and economy see the D2N2 LEP website at

Further information about the D2N2 Local Enterprise Partnership can be obtained from the D2N2 Communications Manager Sean Kirby on 0115 957 8749 or email: 

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