Finally some good news for rail commuters

Crispin Blunt MP is delighted that the Rail Minister has responded to local rail users’ prolonged campaign for fairer fares, with a series of ticketing measures announced today.

Firstly, customers with (or purchasing before 1st January) Southern Only season tickets will have their ticket upgraded so they can use all Thameslink services (all services except Gatwick Express).

Secondly, regulated fares for customers travelling from Redhill, Reigate and other local stations* will be frozen. The average increase of 3.6% will not apply to these local stations, in recognition of the relatively higher prices rail users have been paying on this part of the network.

Thirdly, the Rail Minister, Paul Maynard MP, has initiated work that will look at options to rectify the injustice of higher fares at Redhill and local stations – known as the ‘Redhill Hump’ – with a view to implementing changes before the end of the life of the current Govia Thameslink franchise in 2021. This should also enable the new fare structure to take advantage of future ‘smart ticketing’ arrangements.

Fourthly, they are looking again at the May 2018 timetable to see if it can further improved for Redhill commuters, but all parties recognise the difficulty.

These undertakings were made at a meeting with the Rail Minister and his key officials on Wednesday. The Minister and his team acknowledged both the strength of the Reigate, Redhill & District Rail Users’ (RRDRUA) campaign and that they have a good case.

Crispin Blunt commented:

“After a prolonged campaign for fairer fares, I’m delighted that Redhill and Reigate rail users have been given a Christmas present in the form of this fares freeze and a Ministerial commitment to try to address the historic anomaly of higher fares for passengers using Redhill, Reigate and other local stations.

“Our campaign has been going since 2014 and I am grateful that we have a Rail Minister who is finally demanding regular updates on how the system can address the unfairness to local commuters.

“Paul Maynard has listened to the concerns that the Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users’ Association and I have raised with him and has given this issue his personal attention. I want to thank him for his openness, responsiveness and commitment to rectifying the ‘Redhill Hump’. I am obviously very pleased that we have been given a fares freeze as a first step. It’s a nice note on which to go into the Christmas season and I would like to thank all the rail users who have given their active support to this campaign.”

Stephen Trigg, Chair of the RRDRUA commented:

“I’m delighted our hard work at RRDRUA (being assisted in Parliament by Crispin) is finally being recognised by the Department for Transport, and that the passengers along the Redhill Route are finally starting to get the treatment they deserve. Thank You Paul Maynard for taking the bull by the horns and getting us a small start along the route to fair fares and we look forward to helping the Department with further improvements in 2018.”

Notes:

Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR)/Department for Transport (DfT) announcement:

My train has changed from a Southern service to a Thameslink service and I hold a “Southern only ticket”. Is my ticket still valid?

If your ticket says ‘Not Gatwick Express’ or ‘Any Permitted’ then you can continue to travel as usual. If you have a ‘Southern only’ ticket, this will be valid for travel up until 31st January 2018 on the new Thameslink trains. After this time, you will need to change your ticket for a ticket that says ‘Not Gatwick Express’ or ‘Any Permitted’. Please speak to the staff in the ticket office on how to do this. If you hold a season ticket with an expiry date after 31st January, please visit the station to change your ticket free of charge as soon as possible.

*GTR and the DfT have reviewed fares on the Brighton Main Line and we’re pleased to announce that this has resulted in a fares freeze for certain season ticket prices at the following stations:
•    Gatwick Airport
•    Horley
•    Earlswood
•    Salfords
•    Redhill
•    Reigate

This will result in a simplified fares structure for customers in line with timetable changes being made in relation to the Thameslink programme.

Response to GTR Phase 3 Consultation (May 2018 Weekend & Evenings)

Introduction

We would first like to take this opportunity to thank GTR for their time and effort in consulting upon this major timetable change. Although we feel it is still short of what we would like to see for our Rail Users, thanks to the consultative approach it is far better than the initial proposals to our rail users benefit and thus GTR’s consultative approach has been appreciated.

The Redhill line generates around 10,000 journeys a day and this is around 10% of the total journeys from the Brighton Main Line (which when you consider Gatwick and Brighton – two major centres – are on the route this is a very large portion of other journeys).

We believe there would be far more journeys if the service was improved because of the high level of car usage from the greater Redhill area into London every day due to three reasons: –

  • Slow and overcrowded trains from Redhill to London
  • Expensive and full parking facilities at Redhill Station
  • Relative proximity of Redhill area to London

RRDRUA represents Rail Users from the Redhill route including stations listed above and are very active with our membership of almost 2,000 daily commuters (around a fifth of total daily commuters)

The loss of fast services from Redhill to Victoria will be keenly felt and they will affect several thousand daily passengers. We are also concerned about capacity to Victoria having previously been 3 trains per hour in the high peak hour to just two now. This is the most difficult to accept in the general reduction of services at Redhill compared to the 2012 timetable (which is the last stable timetable to compare to). We still strongly feel that this half hourly all day fast service from Redhill to Victoria should be reinstated as a matter of urgency.

Phase 3 – Main Concerns and highlights

Key positives: –

  • Reinstatement of after midnight service from Victoria (00:08)
  • Sunday services to Reigate
  • Saturday service mirroring off-peak weekday is excellent

Our key concerns with the current proposals for weekends and overnight services are: –

  • Last trains from London to some parts of the Redhill Route
  • Uneven service on Sundays to some stations
  • Provision of Overnight Services to the Redhill route
  • Journeys to Brighton

The Key changes we would like to see: –

  • Services to Redhill route from Crossrail at Farringdon & Blackfriars continuing in the late evening at least 30 minute frequency seven days a week until at least 00:30 to match up with the new frequent all day service to these destinations
  • Last service from Victoria at 00:08 to call additionally at Earlswood and Salfords
  • Additional late night shuttle service to/from Reigate to connect off the 23:36 from Victoria at 00:20 and last Tonbridge service delayed to also connect with this train.
  • Merstham on Sundays – better balancing of timetable hopefully with third train calling to break up long gap
  • Overnight services at all stations on the Redhill route

Last Trains to Redhill Route from London

This best done on a station by station basis and then conclusions at the end. Obviously if our proposal for overnight services is accepted and implemented this section would change drastically but the thoughts below assume this is not the case.

Realistically we think last trains should be after 23:30 to allow time to get from entertainment events with 23:00 curfews (relatively common in London)

Redhill

Redhill is the core of the service along our route and what affects Redhill will also affect much else.

From London: –

  • Victoria
    • Sun Night to Thur Night 23:36 & 00:08
    • Fri/Sat Night 23:36, 00:08 then 01:08
  • London Bridge
    • Mon Night to Fri Night 23:30
    • Sat Night 23:30
    • Sunday 23:19 & 23:45
  • Blackfriars (Thameslink)
    • Mon Night to Fri Night 23:24
    • Sat Night 23:24, then 00:31 & 01:01 Add calls at Redhill
    • Sunday 23:35, then 00:32 & 01:02 Add calls at Redhill

We are pleased to see the reinstatement of last train from Victoria at 00:08. We would like to see two minor changes to the Victoria proposals.

  • 23:36 to run 3 minutes later at 23:39 to match the all day times to the Redhill route from Victoria (Reigate services leave at xx:09 & xx:39 all day – xx:36 is Arun Valley service time)
  • 00:08 to Gatwick to run 1 minute later throughout – also so the xx:09 is constant all day

Blackfriars is a very odd situation with late night services some nights but not others. There is likely to be a change in pattern for our rail users returning from some of London late night, especially when Crossrail opens connecting both the West End and Stratford/East London to Thameslink. This will move some passengers away from the Victoria services and onto Thameslink services.

As this is encouraged during the day we believe there should be regular services into the late evening for returning passengers. Thus, we would like to see regular trains up until after Midnight from Thameslink to the Redhill route to provide the continuity from the all-day services, especially with Farringdon becoming a major interchange. Up to the point of that train, direct services to Redhill should have not more than a half hour gap. The hour plus gap on Sat/Sun nights is too long.

Half hourly until the 00:31 would be ideal every night.

Reigate

Reigate has a much-improved service but has always suffered from lack of late night connection. We think this timetable is better but there are still some issues

From London: –

  • Victoria
    • Mon- Sat night 23:09
    • Sun night 21:05
  • Blackfriars/London Bridge – last connection
    • Mon- Sat night 22:59/23:05 Change ECR
    • Sun night 20:50/20:56 Change RDH

Monday to Saturday, these are all too early. We appreciate that it may not be possible to run direct services after these times but would ask whether the last Reigate train could operate a later shuttle to connect with the 23:36 from Victoria to Horsham at Redhill (although we’d prefer this to operate from Victoria at 23:39).

We also don’t have late night GWR services which could provide this late connection. Currently however their last train operates from Redhill at 23:34 which would be too early to provide such a connection. There are however several later trains from Reading stopping at Reigate.

Tonbridge Line

Last train on weekdays from Redhill is the 23:59 all stations which connects with 23:09 from Victoria and 23:14 from Blackfriars.

On Saturday oddly, this departs 4 minutes earlier at 23:55 and doesn’t call at all stations. We would like to see the same last service on a Saturday as the rest of the week.

On Sunday the last train is 23:07 which seems to early and we would like to see a similar 23:59 service.

For all of these services we would like to see them put back until 00:25 to connect off the 23:36 from Victoria making a much better connection from London events than the 23:55 does.

Merstham

Every day the last calling train is the 00:08 from Victoria – this seems appropriate and provides a suitable level of service from this station.

Earlswood/Salfords

The last calling train most nights is the 23:14 Blackfriars & 23:20 London Bridge service (22:05 from Bedford).

We think the 00:08 from Victoria could easily call at these stations as it terminates at Gatwick.

However, we appreciate that the train is operated by Southern and would be one of only a few Southern services calling here. If this is a problem, we have also asked for later half hourly services from Farringdon/Blackfriars to Redhill route and some of these could call at these stations.

Horley

Similar to Earlswood and Salfords although the 00:08 does call. Horley has had overnight trains for many years so we are not sure why the new proposal removes this. However, our overnight proposals would reinstate this service.

Sundays: Uneven Services to Some stations

Sundays seems to be a bit of a temporary measure to get through a period until services can be ramped up some more on Sundays.

The regular half hourly service between Bedford and Gatwick provides a good service to Redhill, Earlswood, Salfords and Horley. However, there is an hour gap between the 21:07 from Bedford leaving central London and the first of the services from London Bridge at 23:19.

There are three options to fil this void: –

  • A train from London Bridge at 22:45
  • An additional train at 21:37 from Bedford
  • The 21:28 from Cambridge to Three Bridges adding calls at Earlswood, Salfords and Horley

For Coulsdon South and Merstham there is an odd pattern during the day where the Thameslink Peterborough to Horsham and Southern’s Reigate to Victoria trains depart 10 minutes apart at these stations and then there is no train for 50 minutes.

This seems to happen because the alternate Cambridge train (to the Peterborough one) runs non-stop from Purley to Redhill. We think this needs to call at Merstham and Coulsdon South – however this will create a tight turn round time at Gatwick but something needs to be done to stop this very poor services at these two stations.

We are delighted to see Reigate get a Sunday service even if only hourly and hope in time this can be half-hourly like the rest of the week.

We are concerned by last train times both at Reigate and Tonbridge and have covered this above.

Train Services to Brighton

We are naturally disappointed to be losing our Direct service to Brighton on Sundays. However this has been offset weekdays by good connections at Gatwick.

This does not seem to be the case on Sundays but as we can’t see the GWR services this may be an error. Journey times to Brighton should not exceed 50 minutes and we hope this is the case.

Provision of Overnight Services

We have considered the overnight service from Bedford to Three Bridges and would like to see this call at Purley, Coulsdon South, Merstham, Redhill, Earlswood, Salfords and Horley. This has been a long term aim of many rail users along the route and the May 2018 timetable change is a good time to implement this.

To achieve this would need an extra train and train crew be utilised on overnight services and would mean a slower journey from Central London to Gatwick Airport.

We believe the improvements for staff working and living locally at Gatwick Airport plus the improvements for many rail users locally wanting overnight services from London would more than justify this change in service pattern.

We understand that Network Rail will need access to the line for overnight maintenance and hence we have proposed that two nights per week a bus service regularly replaces the overnight trains between Purley and Horley to enable this maintenance to take place. This will provide passengers with certainty through the week.

We have set out a more detailed proposal below:

Proposal for overnight services between London and Gatwick to call at local stations

Stations along the Redhill route do not have any overnight service from London, but London is both an entertainment and employment centre for the residents of East Surrey. When working late nights in London it is often hard to get home and often last trains leave before events finish.

Gatwick Airport is a major employer in the Surrey region and staff often have to make their way to the airport for shifts that start at 4am or finish at 2am. It would be appropriate to have a service through the night between Redhill route and the Airport.

Currently there is a bus service (100) to part of the area from Gatwick but nothing at all from London to the Redhill Area.

There is proposed from May 2018 that there will be an overnight service from Bedford, through central London and East Croydon and then fast to Gatwick Airport running every 30 minutes.

Our proposal is that it simply stops at Purley, Coulsdon South, Merstham, Redhill, Earlswood, Salfords and Horley on its way to/from Gatwick Airport. We estimate this will add 14 minutes each way to the journey time.

Benefits

Journeys made available between Redhill route stations and the airport will benefit both the employees at the airport who know they can always get a train to work and the customers of the airport can get there for early flights or return home by train on late flights.

The knowledge that there is a train every 30 minutes makes this a good choice for passengers when a train is delayed.

Journeys made from London to Redhill route stations will run through the night and will not only benefit residents of the area that there will be an all-night service when enjoying entertainment in London but also for London workers in the restaurant and entertainment industries as they can be sure of getting home after work.

Costs

The extra journey time on the proposed services will mean that an additional train set would be required to be used for overnight trains as the timings at Three Bridges change. Similarly, at least one extra driver and on-board manager would be required every night to cover these services.

It is unlikely to affect existing passengers to Gatwick, as at that time of night the service existing is more important than the speed of the service. A 15 minute extra journey time is unlikely to cause much inconvenience for airport passengers.

It would be expected that CDS/MHM/ERD/SAF & HOR would be unmanned at this time of night but there would anyway be minimal manning at Purley and Redhill all night.

As the railway is already there, signalman are operating it and the stock purchased, it is just the extra cost of running a single unit that makes this service possible.

Complication for Maintenance

Network Rail need to maintain the line between Purley and Earlswood through the Merstham tunnels and need clear working time to do this. So a compromise is needed to provide this time.

We expect they could do the maintenance with two nights of 4/5 hours clear every week with regular planned maintenance. It may also mean they can reduce weekend work on the line as well.

To do this we propose that the Purley to Redhill/Earlswood section is closed after the 23:09 Victoria to Reigate and 22:05 from Bedford (23:21 LBG) which both connect for last train to Tonbridge. This would be set to happen every Monday and Tuesday night to allow Network Rail regular access and can get the appropriate equipment into the area for two consecutive nights per week.

If the line is closed after this then the route will be available to Network Rail for just under 5 hours from midnight to 5am to close the line and work intensely (probably means around 3-4 hours actual work as setting up and clearing takes time). First train in the morning leaves Purley at 05:10 and Redhill at 4:49 although this could be part of the overnight buses. The gap is similar to that left by the Victoria closure so we would expect it would be good for Network Rail to do their work.

It would affect GWR services as well. Their current final service from Gatwick passes Redhill around the same time as the Reigate train. The last train from Reading may need truncating some nights depending on the work required at Redhill station itself each night but as GWR trains are diesel they don’t need power and thus some nights may be able to pass by without affecting the works.

To replace the trains, a bus service will need to run from Purley. The timings of the bus should leave Purley every 30 minutes to connect with the trains. Each train should get initially a single bus calling all stations to Gatwick and return. We estimate it would take two hours to cycle the buses and thus with a driver’s break probably needs 5 buses to run.

Even though the trains can still call at Horley, it is better that the passengers are taken straight to Gatwick to avoid the difficulties of timing the bus to a train – the two services (train and bus) can work independently at the Gatwick end.

When Network Rail have access GTR would be able to run the service with one less unit of stock.

2017 AGM Meeting invitation to Transport Secretary Chris Grayling

The provisional date for the 2017 Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users Association AGM has been set for the Thursday 30 March, 19.30 in the Harlequin Theatre, Redhill.

Our annual AGM is more than just a formal meeting of members of the rail user group. We also invite representatives of the Rail Operating companies to share news, updates, and answer questions. And we’ve already had confirmation that Angie Doll, Passenger Services Director for Southern will be attending.

Entry to the AGM is for full members only. If you’re interested in attending membership is just £5 and you can find our more on our membership page.

Yesterday the RRDRUA President Crispin Blunt MP has written to Chris Grayling asking for his attendance too.

Chris Grayling letter

A copy of the letter can also be downloaded in PDF.

Open letter on behalf of passengers who use Southern & Thameslink services

The RRDRUA has sent and published the following open letter to the Prime Minister. A PDF copy is also available for download.


The Rt. Hon Theresa May
Prime Minister
10 Downing Street
London
United Kingdom

10 December 2016

Dear Prime Minister,

The Residents of Southern England are fed up with the continuing disruption to their daily lives cause by the problems at Southern and Thameslink Railway companies. The key fact in this disruption is the Industrial Dispute about Guards on trains and station staff. This dispute is leading to the breakdown of family life, health / stress issues and the reduced productivity for British Business lost waiting for trains that don’t run.

We have listened to your rhetoric about your government being for the ordinary people of this Country. We are Ordinary people and call on you to intervene directly in this dispute, to get it resolved quickly and swiftly for all our sakes.

It is no good stating this is a dispute between GTR and the Unions because that is not totally correct. Your Department for Transport is demanding modernisation which the Rail Company is trying to implement so your Government is a fully responsible party to this dispute.

As this is an open letter we also call on the leaders of ASLEF and the RMT to come back and negotiate swiftly on these issues with an open mind, whilst suspending all strikes and overtime bans. Entering the room and just saying no is inexcusable. It doesn’t help your members or the passengers they serve. Come into the room with proposals that will resolve the dispute and make Driver Operation work. The world has moved on and technology is improving safety and process throughout life and you and your members need to embrace this.

Here are some suggestions from us: –

  • Embrace Driver only door operation as it is safe within reason (nothing is 100% safe) but add conditions: –
    • Good Lighting at all stations where it operates
    • Dispatch staff at all large stations where crowding may occur such as Redhill
    • On Board Staff on all non-metro trains who are safety trained to evacuate trains in live rail situations.
  • During disruption to avoid cancelling trains where On-Board Staff are delayed, drivers able to take trains without on-board staff to avoid further disruption to passengers, with processes in place for on-board supervisors to be placed on train as soon as reasonably possible.
  • Extension of On Board Staff to Thameslink trains in non-metro area (for example South of East Croydon through Redhill)
  • In Metro Areas Guarantee of at least 2 stations staff with full trains safety training on all stations throughout day

In Conclusion, we ask Prime Minister, that you personally get around a negotiating table with the leaders of the RMT and ASLEF and create an agreement perhaps along the lines of our suggestions that can get Southern England back to work and resolve the issues once and for all.

When this is complete can you look to your Governments Infrastructure and Projects Authority to invest in much needed improvements to the Brighton Main Line, which includes for us Redhill Line passengers, a flyover at Stoats Nest Junction, Remodelling of Redhill Stations and Platform 3 at Reigate Station.

Thank You

For and on Behalf of the Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users’ Association

 

Stephen Trigg
Chairperson

Southern Isn't Working

2018 Timetable Consultation Meeting

Venue Paul Rispoli Theatre,
Reigate College,
Castlefield Road,
Reigate,
RH2 0SD
Date and Time Wednesday 16th November 2016 at 7pm – 9pm
Free and open to all

In association with Surrey County Council and Reigate and Banstead Council we’ve arranged for Govia Thameslink Railway to come and present their proposals for the 2018 Southern and Thameslink Timetable.

Govia Thameslink Railway’s Director Phil Hutchison will explain their proposals and RRDRUA will respond at a free public meeting to be held in Reigate College on 16th November 2016 

The Next 20 Years for Services on the Redhill line are being decided in the next few months – make sure your view is heard. It affects our lives, businesses and commutes.

Southern/Thameslink have proposed for 2018 Redhill Line Timetable

  • Cutting Victoria Services from Earlswood and Salfords
  • Removing London trains from Reigate – shuttle to Redhill only
  • Increasing journey times to Victoria by over 40%
  • Removing weekend & Evening services to Brighton and South Coast

The consultation can be viewed here http://www.southernrailway.com/2018consultation

Timetable Consultation meeting

Redhill route disruption in December / January

Is there ever is such a thing as a ‘Normal December’ on the railways?

Through Southern, Thameslink, and event Great Western there is planned disruption that will impact the Redhill Route.

The table below will be updated as information evolves.

With strikes already planned from RMT, and further action possibly coming form ASLEF on top of planned engineering works from Network Rail which will even impact the Reigate – Redhill – Gatwick service on a few occasions.

Updated:

  • 28 November – Added ASLEF Driver strikes and extended timeline into January
  • 01 December – Moved RMT strike dates from 23/24 December to 19/20
Service Information Details
Thur, 1 Dec
Fri, 2 Dec
Sat, 3 Dec

Sun, 4 Dec

Engineering Works Busses replace trains between Purley and Redhill

Thameslink

On Saturday, trains from Bedford to Three Bridges will not call at: Coulsdon South, Merstham and Redhill. Customers should use Southern buses between Purley and Redhill.

Trains from Three Bridges to Bedford will run to an amended timetable. On Sunday, trains will run to an amended timetable.

Southern

All weekend, Buses replace trains between Purley and Redhill

Your train ticket will be valid on the replacement buses.

Non folding bicycles are not allowed on rail replacement bus services at any time. Folding bicycles are allowed if fully folded. For more information, please see here

Mon, 5 Dec
Tues, 6 Dec RMT Guard Strike London Underground strike by drivers if you manage to get into London will impact the Piccadilly and Hammersmith & City line
Wed, 7 Dec RMT Guard Strike  London Underground strike by drivers if you manage to get into London will impact the Piccadilly and Hammersmith & City line
Thur, 8 Dec RMT Guard Strike
Fri, 9 Dec
Sat, 10 Dec
Sun, 11 Dec Engineering Works Engineering work is taking place between Purley / Reigate and Earlswood, closing some lines.

Great Western Railway trains between Reading and Gatwick Airport will run between Reading and Reigate only. Buses will run between Reigate and Gatwick Airport (taking 20 minutes), and between Reigate and Redhill (taking 10 minutes). Please depart Gatwick Airport and Redhill 15 minutes earlier than normal to ensure you meet your train connection at Reigate.

Southern trains will be diverted between Purley and Horley, and will be unable to call at Coulsdon South, Merstham, Redhill and Earlswood. Buses will run between Purley and Horley to provide connections for customers going to and from the stations without a train service.

Thameslink will have an amended service, more details here.

Your train ticket will be valid on the replacement buses. Non folding bicycles are not allowed on rail replacement bus services at any time. Folding bicycles are allowed if fully folded. For more information, please see here

Mon, 12 Dec
Tues, 13 Dec ASLEF Driver Strike
Wed, 14 Dec ASLEF Driver Strike
Thur, 15 Dec
Fri, 16 Dec ASLEF Driver Strike
Sat, 17 Dec
Sun, 18 Dec
Mon, 19 Dec  RMT Guard Strike
Tues, 20 Dec  RMT Guard Strike
Wed, 21 Dec
Thur, 22 Dec
Fri, 23 Dec
Sat, 24 Dec Festive Period: Planned Services (subject to strike adjustments)

A normal Saturday service will run through the day. Trains will stop running for the day at 23:00

Sun, 25 Dec Festive Period: No services
Mon, 26 Dec Festive Period: Planned Services

An hourly service will run between London Victoria and Brighton. A half hourly service will run between London Victoria and Sutton and also between London Victoria and East Croydon

Tues, 27 Dec Festive Period: Planned Services

A Saturday service will run

Wed, 28 Dec Festive Period: Planned Services

A Saturday service will run with additional trains running at peak times

Thur, 29 Dec Festive Period: Planned Services

A Saturday service will run with additional trains running at peak times

Fri, 30 Dec Festive Period: Planned Services

A Saturday service will run with additional trains running at peak times

Sat, 31 Dec RMT Guard Strike Festive Period: Planned Services

A normal service will run. Additional early morning New Years Eve special services will run from 01:07 to 05:07 between London Victoria and East Croydon calling at all stations

Sun, 1 Jan RMT Guard Strike Festive Period: Planned Services

A normal service will run with minor alterations to late evening services

Mon, 2 Jan RMT Guard Strike Festive Period: Planned Services

A Saturday service will run with minor alterations to some late evening services

Tues, 3 Jan
Wed, 4 Jan
Thur, 5 Jan
Fri, 6 Jan
Sat, 7 Jan
Sun, 8 Jan
Mon, 9 Jan ASLEF Driver Strike
Tues, 10 Jan ASLEF Driver Strike
Wed, 11 Jan ASLEF Driver Strike
Thurs, 12 Jan ASLEF Driver Strike
Fri, 13 Jan ASLEF Driver Strike
Sat, 14 Jan ASLEF Driver Strike
Sun, 15 Jan

Strike week travel information for commuters from Redhill

With the strike going ahead as planned, here’s our understanding of the options available for travel into London for Redhill route passengers.

Planned Strike Week Running information

REDHILL – Trains running – PEAK to London

  • To London Bridge 06:34 …………………and that’s it
  • To Blackfriars 05:04, 05:34, 06:26, 07:11, 08:11, 09:25
  • To Victoria 07:21, 07:51, 08:21, 08:50, 09:21

REDHILL – Trains Running – Off Peak

  • To Blackfriars from 11:17 – xx:17 and xx:47 – last train 17:19 (although there is one at 00:48??)
  • To London Victoria – all daytime – xx:21 & xx:51 to 16:51, then 17:28, 17:57, 18:26 & 18:51
  • LAST TRAIN TO LONDON 18:51

REDHILL – Trains Running – return from London

  • Blackfriars from 10:08 – xx:08 & xx:38 until 16:38
  • Evening Peak 17:20, 17:52, 18:30 & 19:08
  • Victoria from 07:09 – xx:09 & xx:39 – to 16:09
    EVENING PEAK 16:36, 17:03, 17:35, 18:04, 18:35 and that’s it
  • No Service from London Bridge

Other stations:

  • Merstham – NO PEAK SERVICES
  • EARLSWOOD/SALFORDS – CLOSED
  • NUTFIELD / GODSTONE and TONBRIDGE BRANCH CLOSED
  • Horley – NO PEAK SERVICES

Southern have suggested they hope to run an evening service from Victoria to Redhill (leaving Victoria at xx:09 & xx:39 to 23:39). They cannot confirm they can because it depends on numbers of Drivers/Guards turning up – they will not know if they can until late Monday Morning – they will publicise if it does happen.

Alternative Travel

DORKING (All services running as normal)

  • Southern will run DOO services to/from Victoria roughly every half hour – they take about an hour as they stop at most stations via Sutton
  • SWT run trains every half hour to Waterloo (via Clapham Junction) and they take about 55 minutes

ALTERNATIVE KINGSWOOD (or Chipstead)

  • A little known station on the Tattenham Corner branch which is just over the other side of the M25 – about 10 mins drive from Reigate/Redhill.
  • All services are DOO so will be running as normal
  • Trains run to LONDON BRIDGE approx. every half hour and take 55 minutes in peak and 50 minutes off peak.
  • There are also a few Victoria trains in the peak

EVENING ALTERNATIVE

  • Go Via GATWICK AIRPORT after Redhill services finish and catch
    Thameslink 00:39 to Redhill or
  • GWR service from Gatwick to Redhill and Reigate
    Depart Gatwick at 20:03, 21:03, 22:22 & 23:18
  • Don’t forget 100 bus also runs between Gatwick and Redhill – see Metrobus for times

Options using MetroBus

  • Between Redhill & Reigate on routes 420, 430, 435 & 460.
  • Between Redhill, Earlswood, Salfords, Horley, Gatwick, Crawley and Three Bridges on routes 100, 400 & 460
  • Between Redhill, Nutfield, Godstone on route 400 between Redhill Station, Nutfield (A25) & Godstone village (not evenings).

The ‘Sink Hole’ effect on the Redhill Route

Southern Sink Hole

Following the ‘Sink Hole’ Southern have introduced an emergency timetable on top of the existing emergency timetable for trains from London Bridge.

Chairperson Steve Trygg of the Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users Association has sent the following letter to Southern Rail.

A letter from RRDRUA Chairperson Steve Trygg to Southern Rail

Re Redhill Route : Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users’ Association

I am normally the first to back up Southern Rail in the difficult situation the Southern Rail service has found itself in over the last few years, but todays emergency timetable on an emergency timetable has made me very angry indeed, as well as being very disappointed.

The Emergency Timetable shows again the contempt that Southern Rail treats the Redhill route with and it is getting way beyond acceptable.

Firstly, at the station where Southern has already cut 55.5% of Peak London Bridge Services in 2015, that Southern then decides should not to have any peak or other service to London Bridge today. Yes, even our decimated peak services did not run. Whereas a large % of services from East Grinstead (which is peak only), Uckfield and Caterham/Tattenham trains ran.

Then off peak – where Southern has already cut in your emergency timetable all services to Victoria (meaning our 28 minute journey to Victoria is now 48-52 minutes depending on connections if any at East Croydon), that you then truncate/cancel our service to London Bridge meaning we have NO direct services to the main terminuses in London at all.

However Off-peak – East Grinstead, Uckfield, Caterham and Tattenham who have no off-peak cuts in services, all get a full normal off-peak service.

Why does the Redhill Route have to continually suffer from a lesser service than any other Southern Routes, especially in disruption?

Over the last few years Redhill Misery Route has been constantly Southerns worst performing route by a country mile! When are Southern going to create some focus on the Redhill Route to correct these problems and show fairness when cutting trains or are we to continue being the sacrificial lamb to all the other Southern Routes?

It is totally unacceptable the service reductions today even with the big problems you have. As I said Southern has treated Redhill Route customers with utter contempt in a very difficult period.

Best Regards
Stephen

The Sink Hole impact (19 July 2016)

Ticket availability

Southern and Thameslink have confirmed passengers may use:

  • London Underground services between the London Terminals (including London Victoria, London Blackfriars, London St Pancras International, and London Bridge)
  • London Overground services in the South London area
  • London Buses in the South London areaSoutheastern services in Kent,
  • Tonbridge, and the South Coast. You can use your ticket between Lewisham and London Bridge
  • Gatwick Express between London Victoria and Gatwick Airport / Brighton
  • Tramlink services between Beckenham Junction and Wimbledon via East Croydon
  • South West Trains between Portsmouth / Southampton / Dorking and London Waterloo

London Bridge to Horsham trains are starting from East Croydon this afternoon. As you know all Victoria to Redhill trains are cancelled

For Merstham and Redhill (plus Reigate/Tonbridge) best bet is to go to Blackfriars for a through train to Redhill – it is slow through south London but direct and without change at ECR

Earlswood/Salfords and Horley customers may prefer to get first train to East Croydon and pick up Horsham service there

Train Running information

London Bridge

  • 16:29 London Bridge to Horsham due 17:44 – This train will be started from East Croydon.
  • 6:59 London Bridge to Horsham due 18:14 – This train will be started from East Croydon.
  • 17:32 London Bridge to Horsham due 18:50 – This train will be started from East Croydon.
  • 17:59 London Bridge to Horsham due 19:09 – Totally cancelled
  • 18:26 London Bridge to Horsham due 19:47 – This train will be started from East Croydon.
  • 18:55 London Bridge to Horsham due 20:14 -This train will be started from East Croydon.
  • 19:33 London Bridge to Horsham due 20:42 – This train will be started from East Croydon.

After 20:00

  • xx:08 LBG to Horsham trains will start from East Croydon
  • xx:38 LBG to Horsham trains will start from Victoria (not calling CLJ)

Balckfriars

  • Trains to Redhill are xx:08 and xx:38 until 16:38 (all call at Merstham)
  • Then 17:20, 17:52, 18:30 & 19:08 – all Redhill only

Southern Rail Isn’t Working.

A message to the leader of the RMT, the Department for Transport and Southern Rail

We, your passengers, have had enough. Enough of the daily cancellations, enough of the ubiquitous delays, enough of the unofficial strikes and enough of your inaction. All of us are suffering uncertainty and stress on a daily basis, and some of us have even lost our jobs because of your imploding ‘service’. Only you can stop this, so we are asking you to get around the table now, immediately, today, and work out a deal. Don’t leave the room until you have one. We can see sense, it’s about time you did too.

From the Reigate, Redhill & District Rail Users’ Association, on behalf of all Southern Rail passengers.

Southern Rails Isn't Working. A message to the leader of the RMT, the Department for Transport and Southern Rail

A PDF of this advert can be downloaded here (1.7MB)

As featured in the Times newspaper on 6 July 2016.

Times Advert clipping