DOUBLE-TRACKING OF the line between Kettering and Corby was due to be completed during a blockade between 17 and 25 February.
Network Rail has installed a second track on the sevenmile stretch, as well as junctions, signals and foundations for overhead line equipment as part of electrification from Bedford, which is due to be completed in 2020. The nine-day period of testing will see trains replaced by buses.
NR says work so far on the line has included strengthening of 14 bridges and viaducts, including the 12-arch Harpers Brook Viaduct, the laying of 12km of new track and renewal of 9km of existing track, installation of 4km of drainage equipment, completion of 15km of railway embankment stabilisation and laying of 73km of signal and power cabling. Six new signal gantries have been erected, while the route has been gauge enhanced to allow larger freight containers to use it.