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Cambridge North Station rail systems


VolkerRail was appointed by sister business unit VolkerFitzpatrick to deliver the rail systems work for Cambridge North Station and associated remodelling work of the old Chesterton sidings yard as part of the CP5 Multifunctional Framework in Anglia.

The p-way main line works consisted of the renewal of one Dv crossover, and the installation of four new turnouts and 500m of plain line track for the new bay platform.

The sidings remodelling work was completed within a two-week blockade, which included four hand points switches and crossings units and 2,500m of plain line track.

Overhead line equipment (OLE) works, to clear the way for the new station and install new infrastructure; to provide full electrification to the new p-way layouts included the installation of:

  • Five new portal structures
  • Eleven new OLE masts
  • New wires running into the bay platform and across the 1108 points, once renewed
  • 650m of contact and catenary wire and associated terminations
  • 675m of insulated return conductor
  • 500m of bonding


The team also completed signalling remodelling of the south entrance to the sidings, which included the removal of the obsolete St Ives branch and alteration of the main line signalling, within the Chesterton interlocking to provide stopping at the new station. Additional works included:


  • Five new location cases
  • Eight new signals
  • Five new track circuits (and modification of others)
  • An automatic warning system (AWS) and train protection warning system (TPWS)
  • Provision of TRTS/RA plungers and CD/RA indicators in the platforms for train dispatch
  • AWS and TPWS provision for all of the alterations
  • Alterations to the Cambridge signalling panel to reflect the infrastructure remodelling
  • Alterations to the GETS TD and TDM data to reflect the infrastructure changes


Due to tight program constraints as a result of ground conditions and tight design timeframes, VolkerRail and VolkerFitzpatrick worked with VolkerRail’s plant division to ensure the correct plant provision was available for all the possessions and blockades. This included the use of VolkerRail’s Kirow 810 and 250 cranes, a twin jib crane and the beaver tamper.


The works have been successfully delivered and the station re-opened to the public on 22 May 2017.

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