WEEKEND disruption to railway journeys in Ayrshire is to rumble on until the middle of next month.

Services in the area will be affected for the next four Sundays because of engineering work between Kilwinning and Paisley.

ScotRail trains on the Glasgow-Ayr, Glasgow-Ardrossan and Glasgow-Largs routes will be by the work, which will see Network Rail renew more than a mile of track at various locations between the city and Kilwinning.

The project, which began earlier this month, has been described as essential by rail bosses, who say it will cost £4 million.

They will be replacing old, worn railway track by removing it and laying new stone ballast, sleepers and rails.

Irvine Times: Track renewal in AyrshireTrack renewal in Ayrshire

And due to the nature of the work, Network Rail says the project cannot be delivered without some short-term closures of the line.

Liam Sumpter, the infrastructure company's route director for Scotland, said: “The work we are undertaking is vital for the long-term future reliability of the line.

“Our engineers will be working around-the-clock to complete these complex projects as quickly as possible.

“We understand the inconvenience these works will cause to some passengers and residents and we thank them for their patience.

"We are committed to completing this work quickly and limiting disruption as much as possible.”

The line closure will affect journeys on January 31, February 6, February 13 and February 20.

Replacement bus services will operate on each of those dates between Paisley Gilmour Street and Kilwinning.

A direct bus will also operate between Glasgow Central and Ardrossan Harbour to connect with ferry sailings.

Journeys south of Kilwinning and east of Paisley will not be affected, and Monday to Saturday services will run as normal.

Passengers can check how their journey may be affected by visiting www.nationalrail.co.uk or www.scotrail.co.uk/