Norwich to Lowestoft services to be temporarily replaced by buses from Thursday 21 December 21:00 to Friday 22 December 12:00 due to the risk of severe flooding following advice issued by the Environment Agency.

Published on: Wednesday, 20 December 2023
Last updated: Wednesday, 20 December 2023

Rail passengers travelling between Norwich and Lowestoft are advised to allow more time for their journey and check before they travel on Thursday 21 December and Friday 22 December. A section of the line near Haddiscoe will be temporarily closed due to a significant risk of flooding following an expected tidal surge.

Network Rail, in consultation with Greater Anglia, has made the decision to close the line following advice from the Environment Agency that warns of a significant risk of flooding in the Haddiscoe area. This is the same location which experienced flooding in January 2022. The railway line was badly damaged and, as a result, it was closed for almost a week.

The precautionary closure will be in place from 21:00 on Thursday 21 December until approximately 12:00 on Friday 22 December, pending a safety inspection.

The last services on Thursday 21 December will be as follows:

  • 20.05 Norwich – Lowestoft
  • 20.57 Lowestoft – Norwich

All other services will be replaced with a rail replacement bus service until approximately 12:00 on Friday 22 December.

Customers can also use their rail tickets to travel on local buses operated by First Eastern Counties.

It is important to note that Cantley, Reedham, Haddiscoe, and Somerleyton are not accessible by the rail replacement bus service due to access issues. Customers at these stations are advised to use the station help points to contact our customer service team who will arrange taxis.

Customers will also be able to use their tickets to travel on Saturday should they choose to not travel on the dates affected by the precautionary closure.

Jamie Burles, Managing Director, Greater Anglia, said:

“The line closure is a precautionary measure to help protect customers, colleagues, and railway infrastructure in the Haddiscoe area.

“Updates will be communicated via the Greater Anglia website, app, and social media channels.

“We apologise for any inconvenience caused - customers are advised to check before they travel and allow more time for their journeys.”

Katie Frost, Network Rail Route Director for Anglia, said:

“Our priority is the safety of our staff, passengers and members of the public. The risk of flooding on the line between Norwich and Lowestoft means we’ve taken the difficult decision to close it.

“I am sorry that this will disrupt journeys at a time when many of our customers are getting ready for Christmas, but we must put safety first.

“We will have people on-site monitoring the situation, will do a thorough track inspection on Friday morning and will work closely with Greater Anglia to reopen the line as soon as possible once we are assured it is safe to do so.”

Due to the displacement of trains caused by the line closure, the 0640 Lowestoft-Ipswich service on Friday 22 December has been cancelled.

Train services between Norwich-Great Yarmouth and Norwich-Sheringham will be unaffected.

Customers can find all train times by using the journey planner on the Greater Anglia website or app.