Showing posts with label NoToTrainCuts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NoToTrainCuts. Show all posts

08 November 2016

Southern Rail - Consultation on Cuts to Services

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) has launched an extensive consultation which sets out proposed changes to the timetable which will be operated by GTR in 2018 following completion of the Thameslink Programme.

These proposals include:
a) Diverting all our East Croydon services to West Croydon - making it take longer to get to Gatwick and other destinations in Sussex.
b) Reducing our peak services to London Bridge to four trains an hour (the same capacity as the rest of the day). These services would be replaced by five carriage Overground trains to Dalston Junction.
c) Increasing services via Crofton Park to four trains per hour

The Forest Hill Society opposes the first two of these changes and supports the third. But it is important that local residents respond to this survey to show the strength of feeling.

Survey responses should be completed at
To help you respond to the large number of questions across all the Southern, Thameslink, and Great Northern Services, we have compiled a list of the nine questions we believe you should answer, with some explanation of each.

Q No.
Our View
We recommend you respond to this based on your circumstances, but in favour of later running services on Friday and Saturday
We support the introduction of late night services from London Bridge or Canada Water. However, early morning services may be important to you.
Please mention late night services on Friday and Saturday in the comments section of this question.
We recommend you select Yes
This supports services through Crofton Park
We recommend you support this
This supports services through Crofton Park
We recommend you support this
This supports services through Crofton Park
We recommend you select No
These services would replace Forest Hill services to East Croydon
We recommend you select No
This makes more services fast on our line rather than stopping at Forest Hill
We recommend you select No
Unnecessary duplication of London Overground services to West Croydon.
Enforced interchange at Norwood Junction, a station that has no step free access for interchange (on the way to Gatwick Airport).
We recommend you select No
These services world replaces Forest Hill services to East Croydon
We recommend you support SN3.1 and reject SN3.8. We also recommend you reject the reduction in peak hour services to London Bridge

17 April 2010

DfT Replies to Petition

We have received a disappointing reply from the Department of Transport acknowledging our petition. Few of our concerns have been addressed and rather than providing the leadership we called for, the DfT will merely 'not stand in the way of the operators'.

A fuller rebuttal will follow in due course.

Train Services on the Sydenham Corridor

Thank you for your letter and petition of 23rd March 2010 to Chris Mole MP regarding changes to train services on the Sydenham corridor. I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department of Transport.

As the Minister stated in the recent Parliamentary Debate on this issue, any changes to train services, however small, are often unpopular but he restated the view that overall the package of changes to be introduced this May will significantly enhance the service provided in this area of South East London.

When discussing these changes it is important that both East London Line and Southern services are considered together. The provision of an extra 8 East London Line trains an hour on this route, and the improved interchange opportunities this will bring will significantly alter the demand patterns seen today.

From most stations on the route train frequencies will double with many stations receiving 14 trains per hour in the morning peak compared to 6 or 7 today. This will reduce demand levels on existing services to London Bridge.

It will take some time for demand patterns to stabilise after the new services are introduced as passengers alter their travel habits to take account of the new journey opportunities that the line will bring.

We expect the ability to easily interchange with the Jubilee line at Canada Water to significantly alter current demand patterns. It is also very unlikely that the suppressed demand that you refer to from the RUS will emerge straight away. Such demand would normally materialise over a number of years that would accord with the extra train capacity delivered by 10 car trains that are to be introduced in 2012.

You raise a number of other points and I will seek to address each in turn

Charing Cross Services

As you are aware the withdrawal of late evening services to Charing Cross was necessitated by the complete rewrite of the Southeastern timetable as a result of the introduction of High Speed Services. Timetable planners at Network Rail, Southeaster, Southern, First Capital Connect and London Overground attempted for a number of years to develop a timetable that allowed these services to continue to operate, but it was not possible to find appropriate train paths that would allow these services to continue.

If in the future a way of timetabling these services to Charing Cross can be found the Department of Transport would not stand in the way of the operators of doing this.

However it is also important to note that the Jubilee line serves large areas of the West End and passengers may choose to travel via Canada Water interchanging with the 8 trains per hour service toward Sydenham.

Sydenham Services and the East London Line

As stated earlier it is important that the combined Southern and East London Line timetables are looked at together, alongside the improved interchange opportunities that the East London Line will offer.

We expect journey patterns in this part of London to alter significantly when extended East London Line services are introduced. For example passengers travelling to Canary Wharf from Sydenham are likely to travel via Canary Wharf [sic] rather than London Bridge, especially as the journey will be cheaper (avoiding Zone One). For passengers travelling to other stations on the Jubilee line we expect the significantly quicker interchange at Canada Water will mean a number of passengers will divert via this route. Other similar changes are also likely.

Given this we expect a reduction in the number of passengers using London Bridge services.

You suggest that Southern are reducing capacity from London Bridge in the evening peak. Southern will be operating the same number of services from London Bridge although two of those trains will operate fast from London Bridge to Norwood Junction. This has been necessitated by the difficulties in timetabling East London Line and Southern services together on the corridor. For passengers travelling to Norwood Junction and West Croydon we expect these faster services to be an attractive option and many passengers to use these fast trains, reducing demand levels on the remaining 4 slow line services.

Again this timetable has taken a number of years to develop and has involved Network Rail, Southern, First Capital Connect and London Overground. However, it has not proved possible to match all the available paths from London Bridge with those on the East London Line and through key bottlenecks such as Windmill Bridge junction.

We believe that a combination of
  • Some Norwood Junction (and beyond) passengers diverting to 'fast line' services
  • Some West End and most Canary Wharf passengers diverting to East London Line services via Canada Water
  • Additional East London Line services south of New Cross Gate
will reduce demand on evening peak Southern services from London Bridge.

The combined evening peak capacity on the 'slow lines' south of New Cross Gate will increase by around one third when the new timetable is introduced.

Southern are committed to keep this situation under review after the introduction of the new services and officials will liaise with Southern and London Overground on demand levels later this year. Again demand patterns on the revised services will take some time to stabilise as people try out the new journey opportunities.

If additional services or stops can be accommodated within the timetable in future the Department would not stand in the way of these being introduced.

Platform Lengthening

Network Rail are committed to a programme of platform lengthening on the Sydenham route (and across South London) that will allow trains with 25% more capacity - an additional 2 carriages - to stop at all station son the corridor, with works to be completed by 2012, in advance of the start of planned works at London Bridge.

Yours sincerely,
Matthew Lodge, Franchise Sponsor

02 November 2009

Letter to South London Press

Below is the text of a letter published in the South London Press from the Forest Hill Society, other local civic societies, and local councillors.

Dear Sir,
We are deeply concerned by the proposed deep cuts to already overcrowded train services run by Southern Railways via Sydenham, Forest Hill, Honor Oak Park, Brockley and New Cross Gate. Passengers are rightly outraged by these cuts and concerned that an already overcrowded and unpleasant commute will turn into a daily nightmare.
We welcome the introduction of the East London Line extension which is due to start in May 2010, but local residents were promised by Transport for London that existing services would not be cut once the East London Line became operational. These promises have been broken. From December all direct evening services to and from Charing Cross will be stopped. From May 2010 Southern intend to cut 1/3 of all main line services during the day and most importantly during the evening rush hours.
Over 11 million people used this train service in the years 2007/8 and Department for Transport figures and Transport for London figures all show that this line has suppressed capacity of up to 40%. In other words, were train services to improve the numbers of people using this line would increase significantly. The argument put forward by rail bosses that passengers will immediately transfer to the East London Line do not stack up. Improved services will create extra demand for all services, not less.
As representatives of Local Residents Groups, Locally elected politicians and as Chair of the London Assembly Transport Committee we have written to the Minister at the Department of Transport requesting an urgent meeting on these issues. The Department of Transport sets the requirements of the Train contracts that train operators have to run. It is the Department of Transport who can resolve this problem. Both TFL and Southern have made it clear that solutions must come from the Government Department. We have asked the Minster to travel on an evening peak time train service with us to see for himself how overcrowded it is. The Department must take responsibility for this issue, engage with local residents, and provide solutions to their concerns.
Kind Regards
Lewisham Councillors:
John Russell; Philip Peake and Alex Feakes - Liberal Democrat Councillors Forest Hill Ward.
Dean Walton; Romayne Phoenix and Darren Johnson - Green Councillors Brockley Ward.
Chris Best, Marion Nisbet and Seamus McDermott - Labour Councillors Sydenham Ward
Susan Wise, John Paschoud, -Labour Councillors Perry Vale Ward
Local Residents Groups:
Richard Hibbert, Chair; Michael Abrahams; Tony Petim - Forest Hill Society
Tim Lund, Chair - Sydenham Society Executive Committee
Malcolm Bacchus- Telegraph Hill Society
London Assembly Members:
Caroline Pidgeon AM - Chair, London Assembly Transport Committee.

25 September 2009

Council Supports NoToTrainCuts! Campaign

The council last night unanimously passed a resolution calling on the Mayor to write to Southern Railway, TfL and the Secretary of State for Transport in support of our campaign against the cuts in National Rail services later this year.

The motion was put forward by Green Party Councillors Dean Walton and Darren Johnson of Brockley ward. An amendment put forward by Bellingham Councillors Ami Ibitson and Alan Hall (Labour) added the final paragraph concerning the South London Loop service via Denmark Hill.

Councillors Pete Pattisson (LibDem, Whitefoot), John Muldoon (Labour, Rushey Green), Philip Peake (LibDem, Forest Hill), Heidi Alexander (Labour, Evelyn) and John Paschoud (Labour, Perry Vale) contributed to the debate.

The Council RESOLVED that the following motion be agreed
  • “This council calls on the Mayor to write to Southern rail, Transport for London and the Secretary of State for Transport to:
    • Express the council's grave concerns about Southern's plans to reduce off-peak and evening peaktime services to and from London Bridge on the Brockley/Sydenham line from six to four per hour, a reduction of one third, and to oppose these service cuts;
    • Ask for an explanation for Southern's refusal to attend a recent meeting with council officials and residents to explain the planned service cuts and invite them to a further meeting, to include the Mayor himself and ward councillors from affected areas;
    • Seek a full explanation of the planned service cuts and clarification on the maximum capacity of the rail line for both East London Line and London Bridge services;
    • While wholeheartedly welcoming the new East London Line service, oppose any reduction in services to London Bridge that are carried out purely for financial reasons rather than capacity reasons and lobby instead for the maximum possible services to London Bridge.
    • That in the eventuality that it is shown to be unfeasible for the current South London Line ‘loop’ service between Victoria and London Bridge via Denmark Hill to continue to run to London Bridge to facilitate Thameslink works, to urge the reinstatement of the originally intended mitigating measure of diverting the South London Line to Bellingham, as recently recommended by London Travelwatch.”