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Michael Palin's favourite railway line - between Coleraine and Derry in Northern Ireland - set to re-open following upgrade

Published 18/11/2016

The railway line runs along Northern Ireland's scenic north coast
The railway line runs along Northern Ireland's scenic north coast

A section of train tracks once described by travel journalist Michael Palin as "one of the most beautiful rail journeys in the world" is set to re-open following upgrade work.

Even the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh are fans of the section which runs from Coleraine to Londonderry, and enjoyed a train journey along it in June during a short visit to Northern Ireland's north coast.

The royals enjoy the view on board the steam train from Coleraine to Bellarena
The royals enjoy the view on board the steam train from Coleraine to Bellarena

Queen retraces Northern Ireland train journey from coronation year  

Translink has announced that train services on the world-famous railway line will return to normal from Monday following an 18 day closure to facilitate testing and commissioning of the new upgraded signalling system.

The services will be phased back into operation with the first passenger rail service departing from Coleraine at 7.43am, and the first departing from Derry at 9.33am.

Two earlier services from Derry will operate with a bus substitution.

Extensive track engineering work has been carried out alongside a programme of training to up skill rail signallers in the new systems using a new state-of-the- art simulator based in Coleraine. In addition, driver training has also been carried out to familiarise them with the new technology.

Infrastructure Executive Clive Bradberry said engineers have been “working round the clock” to get this phase of works completed on time.

“We would like to thank passengers and the local community for their patience during this important phase of the project,” he said.

“The overall project continues to make good progress and is due to substantially complete by the end of the year bringing a more resilient rail service for the North West.”

To celebrate the re-opening of the Coleraine to Londonderry line, a number of special offers have been announced.

These include a 25% discount on monthly rail tickets and a £50 pound discount on aLink cards on renewal.  Also day return tickets will be offered for the price of a single fare for passengers boarding between Coleraine, Portrush and Londonderry.

Passengers should keep up to date on the latest developments and timetable issues relating to this project through our website:  http://www.translink.co.uk and social media platforms @Translink_NI or call the Contact Centre on 028 90666630.

Train services on the Londonderry railway line are set to return to normal from Monday following an 18 day closure.
Train services on the Londonderry railway line are set to return to normal from Monday following an 18 day closure.

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