Cambridge and King’s Lynn upgrade awarded

As part of a significant enhancement scheme to tackle congestion between Cambridge and King’s Lynn, VolkerFitzpatrick has been appointed to upgrade the stations at Waterbeach and Littleport, extending the platforms to accommodate longer, eight-carriage trains in the peak.

Waterbeach station
Waterbeach station

Appointed as principal contractor for Network Rail, the team will:

  • Extend both platforms at Waterbeach station and platform 2 at Littleport station to be able to accommodate eight car trains
  • Create a new siding for stabling at King’s Lynn, to support the longer train formations

Work is expected to start in October 2019, with completion in the summer of 2020.

At the first available opportunity, eight car services will then be introduced during peak times to provide a better experience for passengers by reducing overcrowding on existing services.

Meliha Duymaz, Network Rail’s route managing director for Anglia, said: “I know reducing overcrowding and increasing the number of seats available on services between Cambridge and King’s Lynn will make a big difference to passengers travelling on this busy route. Getting our contractor on board is a big step forward, and I know we’re all focused on delivering these upgrades for our customers and improving their journeys.”

Keith Jipps, Govia Thameslink railway infrastructure director, said: "We've had a long-held aspiration to run longer eight-carriage trains on our busy Fen Line between Kings Lynn and Cambridge to give passengers much needed extra space.

“We have been working closely with Network Rail on planning these important platform extension works and are excited that this work will start soon. We're ready with the trains and drivers to increase the length of the trains that can run on the line and will be introducing these at the first available opportunity after the work is completed.”

This is one of the first projects to progress to this stage, as part of the new Rail Networks Enhancements Pipeline process, which the Department for Transport and Network Rail now jointly use to manage the delivery of new rail infrastructure.


  • The Department for Transport approved the funding package for the project (approximately £27m) in February 2019.
  • VolkerFitzpatrick began GRIP 5 design services for the Kings Lynn service Enhancement Project, in November 2018. This is a continuation of that contract.
  • VolkerRail, sister company of VolkerFitzpatrick, is appointed to complete signalling, track and OLE works.
  • It is anticipated Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) will look to introduce longer eight car services as soon as possible following the completion of the infrastructure.