Upgrading the Island Line

Island Line Upgrade

New trains, improved timetables, and more

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We're temporarily closing the Island Line while we improve your trains for a smoother ride and more frequent service. Download our full replacement bus timetable to plan your journey.

How we're upgrading the Island Line - new trains, infrastructure upgrades and more

Why is the Island Line being closed?

In September 2019, alongside the Department for Transport, we announced a major upgrade to Island Line, securing the long-term future of the line.

Funding provided by the Department for Transport, Solent Local Enterprise Partnership and the Isle of Wight Council, will see £26m invested into Island Line helping us to deliver a modern railway for the Isle of Wight.

Newer trains

As part of this project we will replace the existing 82-year-old Island Line fleet, with newer and reliable trains, the Class 484.

In keeping with Island Line’s tradition, these trains will be former London Underground trains, extensively refurbished by Vivarail in Long Marston. These newer trains will thoroughly modernise the customer experience on Island Line bringing new features such as free on-board Wi-Fi, improved passenger information, at seat charging points and wheelchair spaces.

With five trains in service, we will also be able to run longer trains at busier times, such as during the summer.

Take a look inside the Class 484

Visit the Vivarail website to take a look at the Class 484 train interiors.

Better journeys

This investment will also see us deliver upgrades to Island Line’s infrastructure, including a new passing loop at Brading, which will allow us to run regular 30-minute services improving connections with Wightlink ferries. The work to upgrade the track will also make journeys smoother, and upgrades to platforms to improve access to the Class 484 trains.

From January 4 2021, services on Island Line will be replaced by buses, whilst the work to upgrade the line’s infrastructure is carried out. Following these works, the Class 484 trains will be introduced into service, with the regular 30-minute service introduced in May 2021.

Improving stations

We’re also making improvements to our stations, with free station Wi-Fi being rolled out across Island Line, and providing new ticket vending machines at Shanklin, Sandown and Ryde St Johns Road.

Planning your journey

Throughout these works, an hourly replacement bus service will run to keep our passengers moving. Buses will run between Shanklin and Ryde Esplanade. Wightlink Ferries are currently suspended due to the latest lockdown meaning the replacement mini bus along Ryde Pier Head is not in operation.

Download the
replacement bus timetable

Project updates

Work completed in January 2021

Island Line Project Progress -  new train arrivals, platform adjustments, rail replacements

Engineering work gallery

See the latest images from the construction work taking place. Click the image to see it full-size in a new tab.

Brading Loop Construction
Brading Loop Construction
Brading Loop Construction

Building the new passing loop at Brading station

Lake Platform Work
Lake Platform Work
Lake Platform Work

Providing level access at Lake station by raising the height of the platform

Shanklin track replacement
Shanklin track replacement
Shanklin track replacement

Replacing railway track at Shanklin station

Ryde Electrical Upgrade Work
Ryde Electrical Upgrade Work

New third rail power supply equipment at Ryde St Johns station

Smallbrook platform improvement

Providing level access at Smallbrook Junction station by raising the height of the platform

Latest news

Iconic Isle of Wight trains reach the end of the line

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Latest news

Former London Underground District Line trains swap the City for Island life

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Latest news

Dates announced for engineering works to transform Island Line

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