Network Rail has upgraded 259km of track between Elstree & Borehamwood station near London and Chesterfield for increased line speeds, 90km of which has been cleared for 200km/h operation.

The project has reduced the fastest London – Sheffield journey time to two hours, with the average journey time falling by seven minutes, while five minutes have been cut from the London – Nottingham journey, with the fastest trains completing the trip in 1h 31min.

Further journey time reductions are expected next year and electrification is due to be completed to Nottingham by 2019 and Sheffield by 2020.