Busy festive getaway expected in South Yorkshire

Traffic congestion is expected over the Christmas period
Traffic congestion is expected over the Christmas period
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Road and rail users in South Yorkshire are being advised to start planning their Christmas getaways ahead of expected disruption and delays around the country over the festive period.

Transport bosses are urging those planning trips around Christmas and New Year to prepare for their journeys - despite hopes that South Yorkshire will be among the least affected areas for disruption.

No engineering works are currently planned on the railways around South Yorkshire, but there will be reduced services, with Northern Rail, East Midlands and First TransPennine Express all ending services early on Christmas Eve and not resuming them until Saturday, December 27.

For those travelling further afield by rail, engineering work taking place along the West Coast main line is to shut the route between London Euston and Hemel Hempstead in Hertfordshire from after services end on Christmas Eve until Monday, December 29. The line will also be shut between Stafford and Crewe until December 28.

Michael Goodeve, a spokesman for Network Rail, said while South Yorkshire is not expected to be affected by engineering works, services are still expected to be under pressure.

He said: “The trains will still be busy and services will finish earlier on Christmas Eve and there is nothing on Christmas Day and Boxing Day as normal. The best thing people can do is check before they travel.”

Those using the roads around the festive period will face continuing delays on the M1, where a 50mph limit has been imposed along some stretches of the road as part of an ongoing project to turn the hard shoulder into a fourth running lane between Junctions 28 and 35A. There is also ongoing resurfacing work on the M180 between Doncaster and Scunthorpe, as well as changes on the M18 between the M1 interchange and junction 3 near Sheffield and Doncaster.

A spokeswoman for the AA said: “Plan your route to avoid major traffic hot-spots and try to travel at non-peak times if possible. If you are going on a longer journey, check your vehicle and prepare entertainment and refreshments for all members of the family, especially the younger ones.”