WIRRAL rail commuters planning to use Liverpool Loop services face a month of disruption from this weekend as essential maintenance is carried out.

Between Saturday, July 13 and August 11 August inclusive, Wirral line trains will not call at Moorfields, Lime Street or Liverpool Central stations.

All Wirral line services will start and terminate at James Street station from July 15-August 9.  

There will be fewer direct trains to Ellesmere Port between 13 July and 11.

On July 13 and 14 July and August 10 and 11, Chester and Ellesmere Port services will start and terminate at Birkenhead Central.

During the same period, West Kirby and New Brighton services will start and terminate at Birkenhead North.

Lime Street station is already temporarily closed until August 22 for refurbishment, so will still be shut over the four-week period, as well. The track renewal work will have no effect on the Northern line.

There will be a rail replacement bus service between James Street station; St George’s Hall, opposite Lime Street station; and Moorfields station.

St George’s Hall is a short walk from both Lime Street and Liverpool Central stations. From 7am till 7pm, buses will run approximately every five minutes. At other times, they will be every ten minutes.

Over the four-week period, Network Rail will renew 220 metres of slab track between Liverpool Central and James Street stations.

This involves the replacement of the concrete on the track and is about maintaining a safe and reliable railway.

Dyan Crowther, Network Rail route managing director, said: "This project represents significant investment in the railway in Liverpool to make services more reliable and punctual for passengers.

"There is never a good time to carry out major work and after careful discussion, it was decided that delivering the project over the summer to coincide with the refurbishment of Lime Street lower level would, overall, cause least disruption."