Tyne & Wear

Rail maintenance work to affect Great North Run weekend

The Red Arrows fly over the Tyne Bridge
Image caption The Red Arrows fly over the Tyne Bridge during the half-marathon

Runners and spectators could face delays when travelling by train to Newcastle for the Bupa Great North Run.

Maintenance work across the weekend of 15 and 16 September could force passengers from Scotland to travel to Newcastle via Carlisle in Cumbria.

Race organiser Nova International communications director David Hart said the timing of the works was a "significant inconvenience".

A Network Rail spokesman said journey times would be extended.

The spokesman added: "Runners travelling from Scotland are still expected to travel on the Saturday as, even under the normal timetable, the earliest Sunday train would not get them to Newcastle in time for the race.

"There is still a train service; albeit with extended journey times. Return journeys are also extended.

"The majority of people travelling to this event by train are unaffected as all routes into Newcastle from the south and west remain open as usual."

Race organiser Nova International communications director David Hart said: "If it happens, it happens, and we'll get on with it... but we could do with significant inconveniences like this not cropping up so close to the weekend of the event."

The half-marathon attracts about 54,000 runners from all over the world to the North East for the run on 16 September.

Leader of Newcastle City Council Nick Forbes said: "Any disruption will not only be embarrassing for the run, disruptive to the runners but could potentially damage our regional economy."

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