Less-used services have been cut back in order to guarantee that enough staff are available that the most-used ones can run as planned. This reflects the staffing challenges GWR is facing due to increased sickness and self-isolation during the current Covid-19 wave.
The temporary timetable was originally scheduled to run from Saturday 8 January to Saturday 15 January, with the option to roll it over for another week if staff numbers continue to be badly affected by Covid. This has proved to be the case, so the temporary timetable will remain in place for at least the whole of next week, with no changes beyond some minor adjustments to the Didcot and Gunnislake services.
GWR will also roll forward the timetable unchanged from Sunday 9 to cover Sunday 16 and Sunday 23 January. Further changes are planned for Saturday 15 relative to the services that ran on Saturday 8 to reflect improvement works that will be carried out on that day.
These changes appear in journey planners from today, Tuesday 11 January. The changes can also be viewed on the GWR website as a pdf. Customers are advised to check before travelling to get an up-to-date view of the situation.
Under the temporary timetable, most train services continue as normal, but others have been reduced. This is to enable GWR to prioritise the services that are most important for schoolchildren, students and key workers, ensuring that crews are available to enable these services to run as planned.
The Book with Confidence scheme that allows customers to change non-refundable tickets has been extended until March. The measures continue to be reviewed weekly, and GWR hopes to return to a full service soon.