RAIL passengers travelling from Newport during the Christmas and New Year period are being warned to check travel details, as normal services will be affected due to engineering work.

Buses will replace trains between Newport and Gloucester, and Newport and Bristol Parkway, from the evening of Monday December 24 until Wednesday January 2.

This is due to round-the-clock engineering work to modernise the South Wales main line.

Passengers are being urged to plan ahead and check their journey at www.nationalrail.co.uk

“We would like to thank passengers for bearing with us this Christmas and New Year, as over 700 of our railway workers across Wales and Borders work around the clock to deliver crucial upgrades to the network," said Bill Kelly, route managing director for Network Rail's Wales and Borders region.

“We are working closely with our train operating partners to minimise disruption, and while most of the rail network across Wales and Borders is open for business as usual, some routes are affected.

"There is also essential rail upgrade work taking place across Britain, so we strongly advise passengers to plan ahead.”

Meanwhile, GWR is advising passengers travelling to London Paddington and on through London, to check their travel details at www.GWR.com as work at this station and at Waterloo may result in disruption

From Sunday-Wednesday December 23-26, and on Sunday December 30, there will be no direct trains to or from London Paddington, with GWR services starting and ending at Reading. Passengers are advised to use the South Western Railway service between Reading and London Waterloo as an alternative.

And from Sunday December 23-Thursday January 3, Cardiff-Portsmouth services will not travel through Westbury, with passengers needing to use rail replacement buses between Trowbridge-Westbury-Warminster.

Train services between Bristol and Trowbridge, and between Warminster and Portsmouth, will run to an amended timetable.

"We advise customers to plan their journey in advance," said GWR operations manager Rob Mullen.

“While we recognise the disruption this work will cause, and thank passengers in advance for their understanding, it is vital to enable us to run more of our brand new Intercity Express Trains.

“These new trains are already delivering more seats, and will after timetable improvements agreed by Network Rail, deliver more frequent and quicker services, on more modern and reliable infrastructure.”

Colin Lea, commercial and customer experience director for Transport for Wales, said: “It’s important for customers to plan their journeys carefully this Christmas and New Year with essential engineering work taking place.

“This work is crucial for the long term improvement of the railway but equally we recognise customers will be affected and we will be doing all we can to minimise the disruption in partnership with Network Rail.

“National rail websites, station booking offices, our journey check site - journeycheck.com/tfwrail/ - our Twitter account, and our bilingual help centre based in north Wales can all help when planning your travel.”

Over the Christmas and New Year period, more than 7,700 workforce hours will be spent delivering vital rail enhancements and maintenance across Wales and Borders. The work taking place between Newport and Bristol forms part of Network Rail’s railway upgrade plan to modernise the South Wales Main Line.