TRAIN services between Westbury and Taunton will be amended over the Easter period, to allow for track maintenance to be carried out.

Network Rail will be carrying out a variety of upgrades within Somerset, including track renewals at Witham Friary and Somerton Tunnel, signalling upgrades, and replacing a bridge over the River Tone at Athelney level crossing, in Stoke St Gregory.

Direct, fast trains between London Paddington and the South West will use an alternative route between Reading and Taunton, extending journey times by around 40 minutes, between Friday, April 2, and Thursday, April 8.

Semi-fast, stopping services will terminate at Westbury from Good Friday (April 2) to Easter Monday (April 5), or Castle Cary (April 6-8), and will run to an amended timetable.

Trains between Bristol Temple Meads and Weymouth will terminate at Westbury or Frome, where buses replace trains to Yeovil Pen Mill, between April 2 and April 5.

Network Rail project manager Ed John said: “The work we will be doing over the Easter period is really important, and will help make the railway more reliable for passengers and freight services for years to come.

“We’d like to thank our neighbours and passengers for their patience while we carry out these essential upgrades.”

A Great Western Railway spokesman commented: "We have been working hard to make sure that people can be confident to travel safely, and that includes running as many trains and carriages as we can to make extra room, as well as enhanced cleaning and social distancing measures.

“Network Rail do, however, need to continue their planned programme of improvement works and to take best advantage of this time when fewer people are travelling.

“For those who do need to travel we would encourage you to check your journey beforehand.”

Customers whose journeys involve rail replacement services may prefer to travel either before or after the Easter weekend, when train services will be running as normal.

Those who require step-free access to change between trains and replacement buses should use Westbury instead of Frome or Castle Cary.

Westbury station is equipped with lifts to/from the platforms and an accessible taxi will be available to enable those customers to complete their journey.