`

Temporary closure of South Shields to Chichester Metro line just days away

South Shields Metro station.
South Shields Metro station.

Metro passengers are being reminded that the line between South Shields and Chichester stations will close for five weeks from Monday.

Transport bosses say the move is part of the £21million development of the town’s new bus and Metro interchange.

Nexus, the public body which owns and manages the Metro, has to carry out track and signalling upgrades so that Metro trains can serve the new interchange when it opens in 2019.

The major line closure will start from Monday and will run until Saturday, November 3.

When the line is closed a frequent replacement bus service, 900, will be provided.

Metro services will continue to operate as usual from Chichester towards Newcastle and Sunderland.

From Sunday, November 4, Metro trains will be unable to call at platform two at Chichester until the interchange works are completed in August 2019.

Further information about this can be found at www.nexus.org.uk/metro/modernisation

Managing Director of Nexus, Tobyn Hughes, said: “The £21million new transport interchange is a really exciting development for South Shields.

"We are now at a key stage where we need to get the Metro tracks and signals set up so that our trains can stop at the new interchange when it opens in 2019.

“We have to close the line between South Shields and Chichester for four weeks from October 1 so that the work can be done safely and effectively.

"We will also have to close platform two at Chichester Metro station until August 2019.

“I’m sorry for any inconvenience this will cause to our customers in South Tyneside.

"The long term benefit will be a brighter, better and more modern transport hub in South Shields, which we think will attract more people into the town for shopping and leisure.”

South Tyneside Council is working with partners Muse Developments and Nexus, and construction contractor Bowmer and Kirkland, to deliver the new South Shields interchange on Fowler Street and Keppel Street.

Construction of the interchange, which forms Phase Two of the £100million South Shields 365 regeneration masterplan, began in April.

It will provide South Shields with a landmark new building housing both the Metro and bus concourses under one roof.

Planning permission was granted last year for the transport interchange, as well as outline planning permission for Phase three, new retail and leisure development.

The project received £9.4million from the Local Growth Deal through the North East Local Enterprise Partnership.

The Local Growth Deal is supporting major capital investments to promote innovation, economic and skills infrastructure and sustainable transport across the North East LEP area.