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Families set for frustrating Bank Holiday getaway

PUBLISHED: 07:07 27 August 2009 | UPDATED: 11:41 06 July 2010

Work is planned on the railways this bank holiday weekend.

Work is planned on the railways this bank holiday weekend.

Families planning a bank holiday getaway from Norfolk look set to be in for a frustrating time with rail and road delays expected this weekend.

The Reading and Leeds music festivals, the Notting Hill Carnival in London, and the Rugby League Challenge Cup final, being played at Wembley on Saturday, are some of the attractions on offer for those looking to leave the county over the next few days.

Families planning a bank holiday getaway from Norfolk look set to be in for a frustrating time with rail and road delays expected this weekend.

The Reading and Leeds music festivals, the Notting Hill Carnival in London, and the Rugby League Challenge Cup final, being played at Wembley on Saturday, are some of the attractions on offer for those looking to leave the county over the next few days.

But just weeks after a series of rail strikes in the region, which affected services between Norwich and London in addition to local services, passengers looking to take the train should brace themselves for more misery.

Planned improvement works are due to be carried out by Network Rail over the August Bank Holiday weekend mean from Saturday to Monday passengers travelling on the Norwich to London line will have to use a replacement bus service between Ipswich and Stansted Airport. Alternatively passengers from the city can travel to and from Liverpool Street via Cambridge.

While on Sundayservices on the Norwich to London line will be replaced by buses between Ipswich and Newbury Park, for a connection with London Underground Central Line services to and from Liverpool Street.

National Express East Anglia (NXEA) passengers have also been warned that a Sunday service will operate on most routes on Monday.

Peter Meades, a spokesman for NXEA, apologised for the disruption the work would cause and said it was mainly the Norwich to London line which was affected with no problems expected on all other local routes out of Norwich.

“Our advice to passengers is to check travel details in advance before travelling over the bank holiday weekend,” he said.

Meanwhile bosses at East Midlands Trains, which runs services between Norwich, Sheffield, Manchester, and Liverpool, have pledged that the majority of services will run as normal over the weekend.

On the roads, long delays are expected as roadworks are carried out on some of the country's busiest routes including part of the M25, sections of the M4 and the A46 in the West Midlands.

However, a spokeswoman person for Norfolk County Council said: “The bank holiday weekend will certainly see some of Norfolk's roads busier than usual, but the main routes across the county will be free of any planned roadworks.”

Anyone thinking of flying out of Norfolk had better act quickly with nearly all charter flights from Norwich International Airport this weekend almost fully booked apart from the 5.45pm Thomas Cook flight to Corfu on Monday.

“Pretty much all our charters for the weekend are fully booked,” said a spokeswoman, with flights to Menorca, Majorca, Ibiza, and Malta proving particularly popular. “It's one of our busiest weekends for flights going out - it's bank holiday weekend and one of the last before schools go back.”

For those unable to get away this weekend some of the attractions closer to home include the first Annual Norfolk Balloon Festival at Old Buckenham Airfield, a raft race being held at Salhouse Broad on Sunday to raise money for the upkeep of the beauty spot and charity Nelson's Journey. There is also an annual snowboard and freestyle ski competition at the Norfolk Ski Club at Trowse on Saturday.

National Express East Anglia customers should check amended timetable information at stations on the website www.nationalexpresseastanglia.com, or by calling National Rail Enquiries on 08457 48 49 50.

East Midlands Trains Customers should check train times for the bank holiday weekend by visiting www.eastmidlandstrains.co.uk

For up to the minute information about road works in the region log onto www.norfolk.gov.uk and click on road works or alternatively www.highways.gov.uk.

For more information about flights from Norwich International Airport call 0844 748 0112 or log onto the website www.norwichairport.co.uk

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