Welcome to Redhill, here’s why you’ll still be stuck at the station this weekend (again)

You will likely have heard about the issues at Redhill Station on Sunday 25 February – when thousands of passengers were left stuck trying to complete their onward journey to Gatwick and the south coast by a lack of Rail Replacement busses.

If you saw that (and our response to it last weekend) and feel like you were missing out by not being involved your luck is in, as it looks like it will be a very similar story this weekend when the same engineering works take place.

As a local rail users association we wrote to Southern Rail in response to their plans before the issues happened, and we’ve been speaking to them again since in a bid to secure a better service over the next two weekends when the same line closure is happening.

The good news – they’ve been listening to us

The bad news – they’ve not really doing anything to solve the problem at Redhill on the trains although they’re going to give running busses a better go.

Our point of view

On the face of it this weekend they’ll be doing what they should have been doing last weekend on the bus front. However there simply won’t be enough trains.

Passengers at Merstham and Coulsdon South were unable to board services  last Sunday as they were full. The issue isn’t really being dealt with. All that’s been added to the Redhill route is the 4 extra coaches on the Victoria – Tonbridge (via Redhill) route.

The capacity issue is made worse as everyone from London Bridge will be turning up at East Croydon to board these services too – as the Thameslink trains south will not be running at all.

There should be more trains per hour provided to cope with the passenger demand in both directions.

Oh and not to mention Brighton at home against Arsenal this weekend.

So here’s the detail (and they have made some positive steps)

Travelling to Gatwick Airport or further south

If you need to get to Gatwick on Sunday 4 March you have several options, and most of them involve not using Redhill at all.

– An additional hourly service will run from Victoria to Horsham (via Dorking) meaning you can get to Gatwick on that – the train takes a big loop through Dorking down to Horsham, Three Bridges, and then Gatwick. It’ll be a 10 or 12 car train!
– You can also get one of the 2 trains per hour to East Grinstead from Victoria, and then transfer to a bus to Gatwick Airport.

In summary all your options are:

– 3 trains per hour Redhill – Victoria
– 1 train per hour Tonbridge – Victoria via Redhill
– 1 train per hour Gatwick Airport – Victoria via Horsham/Three Bridges
– 2 trains per hour East Grinstead – Victoria (with a bus link to Gatwick Airport)
– Buses between Gatwick Airport – East Grinstead
– Buses between Redhill – Gatwick Airport – Three Bridges

The Tonbridge train will now be 8 coaches instead of the 4 that it was last weekend. The Victoria to Redhill trains will be 12 coaches again.

Southern also tell us that they have extra standby busses to support the demand if needed, and some of the busses will run direct from Redhill to Gatwick Airport without pulling into all the other stations.

They also tell us that an ’emergency train’ will be sitting at Victoria in case it’s needed (why they don’t run it we don’t know).

At Redhill they tell us they’ll be doing a better job of making sure people and busses are managed effectively. There will be extra staff and bus controllers. The carpark at Redhill will be used to marshal people onto the busses with clear options for each destination.

 

The sneaky way Southern Rail avoid paying Delay Repay (UPDATED)

Delay Repay

Now other Train Operating Companies take note – this sneaky tactic by Southern Rail is one you should be copying. Here’s one simple move you can use against your paying commuters to remove all responsibility to get them to where they paid to be taken to – and avoid Delay Repay or the need to put on replacement busses.

This shocking tactic by Southern Rail is simple:

It all starts with some careful planning and the intention to not run  a train that is in the timetable. Simply don’t send the train…leaving the passengers standing on the platform or struggling to get home – but you have to do it in advance.

By doing it in advance you have the sneaky sneaky option of deleting the train from the timetable. Don’t report it as delayed or cancelled. Just delete it like it was never meant to be there.

This is brilliant, because people turn up at the time they would expect the train to run – you know because we plan ahead like the station announcements always tell us to do – some of the non season ticket holding customers even buy a ticket at the station. But when they turn up at the platform, the information board is simply blank. When they check their handy train time application – the train doesn’t appear to be showing in the timetable.

What’s more – you don’t have to provide any rail replacement busses, because the train was never in the timetable for the day.

And finally – when those angry commuters fill in the delay repay forms to claim compensation for the lack of train and the disruption of their journey – you can reject them – because you never timetabled it.

If you want to see this tactic in operation first hand – head to Reigate station in Surrey. Southern do it here quite a lot!

UPDATE

Southern Rail via Twitter now say that despite these trains being deleted from the timetable you can claim Delay Repay so we’re really like to hear from commuters who have tried and if you’ve been successful. Please let us know in the comments below.

However it’s still apparent that deleting the train from the timetable removes their responsibility to put on Rail Replacement busses.

Redhill chaos: And there’s 2 more weekends like this to come!

This weekend (24 & 25 February) saw line closes on the Brighton mainline and through Redhill to allow Network Rail to carry out necessary track improvement works.

Having seen the advance notice provided by Southern Rail of the shutdown and that on Sunday – specifically all Gatwick and South Cost bound passengers from London would be terminating at Redhill to transfer to busses – we wrote to Southern/Gatwick Express/Network Rail to warn that Redhill station couldn’t cope with the number of passengers arriving  or that there would be enough trains for onward travel for those returning to London.

Sadly, despite replying to our emails they didn’t listen or take any further action. And seeing what has happened this weekend – especially today at Redhill Station – Our Chairman Stephen Trigg has written again asking that they listen and take action.

Stephen’s note is below in full:


From: Stephen Trigg

Subject: ABSOLUTE FAILURE TO PLAN AHEAD [REDHILL 25/02/2018]

Date: 25 February 2018 at 18:28:27 GMT

To: Angie Doll, Stuart Cheshire
Cc: Tracy Hall  Scott Brightwell , Halsall John, Crispin Blunt, Jo Johnson, Linda McCord , Tim Bellenger, Tim Leighton

Dear Angie and Stuart,

As Passenger Directors of GTR Southern and GTR Thameslink I direct this email at you.

We tried as a Rail Users organisation to ask for better provision of services around the major closure between Gatwick and Redhill this Sunday (25/02) as we foresaw your plans were inadequate. We wrote to you and your teams several times concerned about the lack of service but only received replies from junior members of your team who didn’t seem to understand the problem. This is something you and your senior teams should have been on top of.

Today (Sunday) we have sadly been proved right. The situation at Redhill is extremely dangerous, not helped by the inadequate subway at the station that needs replacing anyway, inadequate space for buses to turn round and there are hundreds of passengers running all over Redhill Town centre trying desperately to get to their destinations by taxi or whatever other means they can find.

There is obviously not enough trains to get passengers to London nor are there enough buses to get people to Gatwick or the South Coast.

I have just driven past the station and there are people running across the main road with heavy cases. The situation is not just at the station but right into the town. I can see the police have been called to assist with the chaos your Company has created.

After the problems at Finsbury Park with overrunning engineering work in Christmas 2016, and at London Bridge the first day of the service cuts, we would have thought you would have tools to measure what is required for adequate provision of service. It sadly seems not.

I trust that you and Network Rail will cancel the next two weekends line closures until a point where you can work together to find a proper and safe solution.

We look forward to finding out how you will be doing this in future and happy to discuss if it will help.

Best Regards
Stephen

Stephen R Trigg | Chairperson | Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users’ Association
E Chairperson@rrdrua.org.uk

Slow Victoria Trains Killing Redhill

Tomorrow, GTR will launch their new Thameslink and Southern timetable that is supposed to transform travelling along the Brighton Main line. However passengers from the Redhill route are getting stuffed. The #RedhillMoo

In 2015 when cutting over half their London Bridge services Redhill commuters were promised, by no less than the “Passenger Service Director” of GTR Southern, that in May 2018 there would be a significant improvements to their services. This was a false promise, a complete lie to placate very angry commuters.

Well those commuters again are very angry, in May their Victoria service will take 11 minutes each way longer, that’s 22 minutes every day longer commute, that’s almost 2 hour longer commuting a week, or 3 and half days a year more on the train. An absolute nightmare for the 4 to 5,000 commuters who rely on these Victoria trains every day.

2,215 signed a petition calling on the DfT and GTR to reinstate the fast Victoria services, Charles Horton of GTR could not even be bothered to reply. The Ministers at the DfT both said it’s tough luck and undemocratically ignored the thousands of commuters from Redhill.

The DfT did say that the London Bridge services are better than the post cut service, true when you take out most of the trains as they did in 2015 and then reinstate some of them it will be better than the cut state. Reality is that between 6:30 and 8:00 there was 11 trains to London Bridge or Blackfriars in 2012 and in the new timetable there is just 9. That is not an improvement. They will also be the new Thameslink trains with Ironing board seats. So the new trains are less comfortable, less useful for working on due to lack of space around the seats, and more there will be less seats – the new trains drop from 754 seats in the old ones to just 666 in the new ones. Seats given away on services routinely full and timetables to take either 30 or 40 minutes to London.

DFT also said the journey time to London Bridge is faster to compensate for the Victoria trains going slower. Two very clear points from this, passengers for Victoria have no interest in a train service to London Bridge – its half way across town and if your commute is to Victoria, it is because you want to go to Victoria not London Bridge. Second when we used to have peak services to London Bridge in 2012 that took 25 or 27 minutes from Redhill, how can that be slower that the new services that take 30 minutes. More lies pedalled out.

The local passengers at Redhill want their Victoria service reinstated at 28 minutes to Victoria every half hour as it has been since the 1970’s.

This artile has been written because of the huge number of people realising that their daily lives are going to be heavily disrupted by the huge changes in services along the Redhill route. Arun Valley trains no longer call to save 5 minutes for their other passengers but the higher volume of passengers from Redhill are given 11 minutes extra to sit in trains. This will have an economic impact on Redhill as well, when local firms are already struggling to attract the right staff from London and Brighton. Yet we keep seeing publicity about transforming rail services and “It’s time for a new generation of Rail Travel” plus “tube like” timetables – well we are not getting that. Were getting less and slower trains.

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.

GTR Southern surprise thousands of Redhill, Reigate and Horley rail users at Christmas with a sneaky 14% Fare Increase!

GTR Southern surprise thousands of Redhill, Reigate and Horley rail users at Christmas with a sneaky 14% Fare Increase!

  • Many fares along the Redhill route subject to stealth increase of up to 14% on Monday 10th December which has not been communicated to passengers.
  • This increase is on top of the previously announced 3.6% annual increase due in January – thus together hard-pressed commuters will find their fares will rise by 17%.
  • A further example of the unfair fare treatment applied to passengers on the Redhill route

Commuters on Monday morning will, without warning, find a special Christmas present from Southern, some of their daily trains will have transferred to Thameslink and their “Southern Only” tickets will not be valid on the replacement trains, forcing them to pay higher fares on the new Thameslink services. Both Thameslink and Southern are operated by the same parent company GTR.

And to add further misery to commuters the new ‘improved’ Thameslink services have less seats than the Southern trains they replace.

Clair Read on the RRDRUA Facebook group who travels daily from Horley said:

Horley is currently only served by Southern trains so we’ve all bought Southern only season tickets. The new January timetable says that one of the only 2 direct rush hour trains to London Bridge will be changed to Thameslink. So, we’ll have to pay an extra £288 +3.3% fare increase to receive that same (dis)service that we do now. It’s just another way for them to squeeze extra money out of us. We can’t buy a Thameslink only ticket as the trains home are all Southern 😠.”

GTR are offering to replace cheaper “Southern Only” tickets with more expensive ones, as the majority of tickets used are “Southern only” this creates a price rise as there will no longer be Southern Services. No Solution in place even for Season Ticket Holders of “Southern Only” tickets bought in good faith that the service would continue.

The “Department for Transport” are fully complicit in this change, it is there responsibility to prevent this kind of problem from happening. The DFT have directed the change of service provider but not engaged on the effects with local passengers. RRDRUA have written several times to make them aware of this enforced price rise and also on the “Redhill Hump” where fares from Redhill route are between 11 and 40% higher than other nearby stations in the first place. DfT have refused to engage or even assist local passengers on this.

We have written to Chris Grayling Secretary of State and have met with Paul Maynard Transport Minister. Mr Maynard promised a solution for the Redhill route in September but has not yet made any suggestions.

In 2015, over 3,300 Redhill Route passengers petitioned for London Zone 6 pricing to make the fares fair from the Redhill route. Oyster readers have been installed along the line but are the only Oyster readers in use that do not guarantee the lowest fare and often paper tickets are cheaper – adding to the loss and confusion felt by thousands of Redhill passengers daily.

Stephen Trigg RRDRUA Chairman said “The DfT again let down Redhill passengers with more overpriced tickets, we need Travelcard Zone 6 along our stations now and definitely before May next year when even more trains go to Thameslink and many more passengers receive this back-door Fare increase.”

Contact:

Stephen Trigg     steve@rrdrua.co.uk
07801 552 915       www.rrdrua.org.uk
Chairperson – Reigate, Redhill and District Rail Users Association

Notes to Editors:

The unfair Redhill pricing hump – this is where prices rise by 47% from Stations along the Redhill route after London Travelcard zones and then fall by 15% as you reach Sussex. Meaning Redhill Passengers pay more than Sussex passengers who services are faster and more regular into London

Stations in order from London Cheapest Annual

Z1-6 Travel Card

% Increase by Station from Coulsdon % Increase by Station from Redhill
Coulsdon South £2,492.00
Redhill £3,652.00 47%
Horley £4,204.00 69% 15%
Gatwick Airport £3,448.00 38% -6%
Three Bridges £3,448.00 38% -6%

Thameslink – Southern services to London Bridge are being taken over by Thameslink in May 2018. As part of this shift key peak trains are changing in December 2017.

Price Comparisons – showing how fares are changing

2018 Prices Shown Current From 10 Dec Cost %
Ticket Price Ticket Price Increase Increase
Horley to London Bridge GTW to LBG (Southern only) £2,524.00 GTW to LBG (Any) £2,820.00 £296.00 12%
Horley to Z1-6 Travelcard GTW – Z1-6 (Southern only) £3,944.00 GTW – Zone 1-6 Travelcard £4,504.00 £560.00 14%
Redhill to London Bridge GTW to LBG (Southern Only) £2,524.00 RDH to London Terminals £2,804.00 £280.00 11%
Reigate to London Bridge Dorking West to LBG (Southern only) £2,564.00 Rei to London Terminals £2,844.00 £280.00 11%

GTR have this advice on their Website in the small print 

In the FAQ section here https://www.southernrailway.com/travel-information/plan-your-journey/timetable [Screenshot].

“My train is changing from a Southern service to a Thameslink service. 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 not be valid on the new Thameslink trains and you will either have to travel on an earlier or later Southern service or 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.”

Petition calling for Zone 6 : https://www.change.org/p/patrick-mcloughlin-secretary-of-state-for-transport-redhill-route-stations-including-reigate-nutfield-and-stations-between-merstham-and-horley-to-be-included-in-oyster-zone-6

Article: http://reigate.uk/rail-petition-handed-to-government/

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

RRDRUA 2018 Timetable Consultation Response Guidance Notes

For anyone who is completing the Timetable Consultation Response for the Redhill area here are our guidance notes for responding to the questions.

Of course, feel free to amend or adjust as you prefer. Importantly you don’t need to answer every question as reflected below.

The full timetable consultation information can be found on the Southern Railway website.

And the link to complete the response to southern’s Timetable consultation is https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/2018timetableconsultation

Question 14:

Do you support proposals to approach engineering works differently? Please select all options you support.

Reduced frequency on some routes after 2300 on Weekdays and Saturdays

Earlier last trains on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays on some routes

Later first trains on Sunday mornings on some routes

I don’t support proposals to change the current engineering works hours

Any further comments on this proposal?

RRDRUA supports the principle of setting specific times each week for maintenance. For Example, we would be happy if on Monday and Tuesday nights the 23:02 from Victoria was the last train to Redhill on Monday and Tuesday nights, provided that bus services would be provided for later passengers to return from London as shifts do not change just because the Railway is closed.

However, we would like this to reciprocated by additional late night services to Redhill Line. For example, later services to Reigate, Merstham, Earlswood and Salfords plus overnight London to Gatwick trains calling at Redhill right through the night on other days. Additionally, earlier morning services to Gatwick from Merstham, Redhill, Earlswood and Salfords arriving at Gatwick before 5am for shift workers.

Question 15:

Do you support the proposed frequency increase for Thameslink services at Luton, Luton Airport Parkway, Harpenden, St Albans City, Radlett, Elstree & Borehamwood, Mill Hill Broadway and West Hampstead Thameslink with the introduction of a new semi fast service?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not affect our services

Question 16:

Do you support the proposal for Thameslink services on the North Kent line serving Greenwich, Abbey Wood, Dartford and Medway Towns?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

We are concerned that we are constantly informed our services cannot be increased because of the need to avoid flat crossings at Stoats Nest and Tinsley Green, yet here is a proposal that will create another flat junction that will affect reliability of our trains.

It seems strange that an issue that affects us does not affect other rail users

Question 17:

Do you support the proposed increase in frequency of Thameslink services on the Catford Loop line?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not affect our services

Question 18:

Do you support the proposal for Thameslink Maidstone East services to operate via London Bridge instead of Elephant & Castle restoring train services previously withdrawn in 2009?

 Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services. We are though pleased that the number of trains between Thameslink core and London Bridge is remaining with the loss of Caterham/Tattenham trains.

Question 19:

On balance do you support the retention of Caterham and Tattenham Corner services as part of Southern South London Metro?  Proposed improvements for the Caterham and Tattenham Corner routes include longer 10 carriage trains and other off peak enhancements (full details in Southern South London Metro section). 

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not affect our services directly but it seems sensible for the passenger numbers and to relieve pressure between Windmill Junction and Thameslink.

Question 20:

Any other comments in relation to the expanded Thameslink network from 2018?

The principle of through trains form London is accepted as it increases the ability to create more services. We are disappointed that this proposal does not increase services through the Redhill Lines.

Comments 21 to 33

Specific comments can be made on individual services within each sub route in the survey.

TL1/2 – RRDRUA would support the overnight service between Bedford to Gatwick take on the stopping pattern of TL2 not TL1 south of London. That is to call at Norwood Junction, East Croydon, Purley, Coulsdon South, Merstham, Redhill, Horley and Gatwick to provide a commuting train service for shift workers at Gatwick Airport. This is an important need which there is no public transport option currently.

TL2 & TL5 Stopping pattern between Gatwick and East Croydon. We appreciate the careful planning of the stopping sections of these trains. We would recommend this be swapped over.

That is TL2 should stop at East Croydon, Coulsdon South, Merstham, Redhill and then Gatwick Airport. Then TL5 should stop at Norwood Junction, East Croydon, Purley, Redhill, Earlswood, Salfords, Horley and Gatwick Airport.

This would benefit Earlswood, Salfords and Horley customers who can get direct services to their local main town centre at Crawley via the Horsham trains which requires a change if the trains are the other way around. It also provides a Service from Norwood Junction and Purley to Crawley.

Question 28:

The proposed Thameslink service between Cambridge and Maidstone East is only able to serve either St Mary Cray or Swanley due to insufficient time to enable the train to arrive in time to start its return journey from Maidstone East. Please select which station you would prefer the train to call.

St Mary Cray or Swanley

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 34:

Do you support proposals to change Sunday services between London Victoria and the West Coastway, to enable faster journeys between London, Chichester and Portsmouth similar to weekdays?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 35:

Cooksbridge and Plumpton

Do you support retaining the current hourly service at Plumpton?

Do you support reducing the current hourly service at Plumpton to a two hourly to enable a two hourly service at Cooksbridge on Mondays to Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays?

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 36:

Please provide feedback on this proposal to improve the overall journey times between London, Eastbourne, Bexhill and Hastings

I support this proposal 

I don’t support this proposal 

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 37:

In relation to trains between Lewes and Seaford, which option do you prefer? 

Regular peak service between Brighton and Seaford with direct London to Seaford trains discontinued.

Continuation of direct London to Seaford peak trains with a gap of one hour between Brighton and Seaford.

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 38:

Do you support the proposal to operate Southern Mainline services between London Victoria and Hastings only?  If this proposal is supported these services would be replaced by an alternative Southeastern train from London Charing Cross which would be extended to and from Ore.

 Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Q Question 39: Proposals effecting Redhill Station

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

We have taken representation extensively locally and cannot support a proposal that weakens the service from 2012.

For Redhill it means a 40% increase in Journey times to Victoria which is not acceptable. The market to Victoria and London Bridge/Thameslink is very different and we forecast very little change as a result of the Thameslink services being able to connect with Crossrail at Farringdon.

Passengers from Redhill use the Victoria services not only for Victoria and its connections to the West End but also to connect with South West Trains at Clapham Junction.

We have calculated that the journey time to Oxford Circus from Redhill currently 46 minutes but with the amendments suggested would be 57 minutes via Victoria or 55 via Farringdon & Crossrail both significantly longer than current.

Redhill has had a half-hourly service to Victoria taking 28 minutes in each direction since the 1990’s and it is an established travel pattern. GTR’s own figures of journeys from Redhill (top 6 destinations) indicate that over half of journeys from Redhill would use the Victoria service. Thus it is vital that Redhill has a Victoria service that takes only 28 minutes from Redhill to Victoria. Millions of journeys every year would be affected by this change.

Additionally, the loss of South Coast services has been severely felt in Redhill and the need for these to be replaced is very high. A key improvement expected in the 2018 timetable proposals is an all-day service from Redhill along the Brighton Line and that this has not been included is very disappointing. Especially with the loss of Arun Valley services.

The timetable is focussed on providing main line services to London without considering the many journeys that occur between intermediate stations and to the employment centres at Gatwick, Crawley, Haywards Heath and Brighton, plus the high level of leisure journeys to Brighton. Many potential customers are being forced into cars for the journeys adding to congestion where it is not needed.

We would suggest two alternatives: –

Alternative 1 – Extra half-hourly Train along Redhill Line

The Brighton to London Victoria Southern service should call at Redhill, providing a fast service from Redhill to London Victoria half-hourly daily including evenings (except Sundays where it becomes Hourly and the other half-hour would be provided by either Littlehampton or Portsmouth Services)

If this alternative is taken then all other services could remain as planned, except that we would swap calling patterns between Gatwick and London Bridge from the Peterborough trains and the Bedford trains from Gatwick for convenience of Earlswood to Horley passengers to get to Horsham as per response to Questions 21 to 33.

Alternative 2 – Maintain Calling pattern on Reigate/Tonbridge services between Redhill and East Croydon

This would mean that Merstham and Coulsdon South stops would need to be picked up by Thameslink services to London and the benefits of removing that is lost.

However, we believe strongly that the slower service should be the 4 trains per hour London Bridge/Thameslink services as the regular nature of the service brings benefit of less waiting times at stations so overall the effect is less. The Reigate/Tonbridge service should be the faster service from Redhill to London. Please see our views on this service in Question 43.

RRDRUA believes that Alternative 1 is the preferred solution as it solves all service provisions and also means the service will be improved from 2012, which the GTR proposals are not.

Q Question 40: Proposals affecting train services serving Merstham and Coulsdon South

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This proposal has a neutral affect. Coulsdon South and Merstham customers are split pretty much 50/50 between wanting London Bridge/Thameslink or Victoria, so to swap from 4 trains per hour to London Bridge to 2 trains to London Bridge plus 2 to Victoria is going to please some and annoy others.

The turn up and go aspect of the four trains per hour to London Bridge (and now Thameslink) will be lost and this will probably be missed by many passengers. However, this is offset by having a Reigate service which will be useful for college students and a Victoria service for off-peak passengers who prefer Victoria.

We slightly prefer 4 trains per hour to London Bridge/Thameslink supplemented by a regular Peak service to Victoria including some shoulder peak trains (e.g. at least two trains after off-peak fares start)

Q Question 41: Proposals affecting train services serving Horley, Salfords and Earlswood

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

We agree with this proposal but it counteracts against our disagreement with the proposals for Redhill to Victoria trains.

Our view is that London Bridge trains should call at Merstham and Coulsdon South.

We do though believe that there is a strong traffic between Earlswood, Salfords and Horley towards Three Bridges, Crawley and Horsham and to disconnect them would not be in the best interests of passengers. Thus, RRDRUA proposes that the Peterborough to Horsham service should call at Earlswood, Salfords and Horley and the Bedford to Gatwick Airport service should run fast. It would be sensible to swap the stopping patterns north of Redhill too.

We appreciate that both sets of trains call at Earlswood, Salfords and Horley during the peak.

We think it is also important that Earlswood and Salfords have a service to Victoria during the day and we have proposed this in the Reigate service provision in Question 42.

Q Question 42: Proposals affecting train services at Purley

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

We oppose the new fast service from Purley to Victoria as it means our fast service to Victoria needs to call at Purley which has a disastrous consequence on Journey times from Redhill.

We support the idea but not the application.

Q Question 43:

Do you have any specific comments in relation to services between Redhill and Tonbridge?

Redhill to Tonbridge services are poorly used in general and mostly only between Redhill and Tonbridge. We don’t see any need to provide additional services here and considerations should be given for Network Rail to build a platform 4 at Redhill saving the need for Tonbridge services terminating at Redhill crossing the main lines.

Q Question 44: Reigate

Which option do you support?

Regular shuttle (up to six trains per hour when combined with Great Western Railway) connecting with regular Thameslink and Southern trains to and from London

Direct peak services to London Victoria at half hourly intervals joining with other carriages at Redhill (passengers for London Bridge would be required to change at Redhill or East Croydon)

Any further comments on this proposal?

Reigate station is poorly served by London Trains. Since 2008 when an hourly service was added to London Bridge the usage has since doubled.

RRDRUA has surveyed its members who live in Reigate and found just over 50% living in Reigate drive to Redhill/Earlswood or Merstham because of the unreliability of service at Reigate. If a better service could be provided at Reigate around 65% of those driving would walk to Reigate station and catch the train from there.

We have also surveyed the shuttle idea, the problem with existing Shuttles is that they get cancelled and all services to Reigate end up being lost. RRDRUA thus totally opposes the use of additional shuttle services.

RRDRUA also believes the service from Reigate to London should be half-hourly throughout the day including evenings and hourly on Sundays. This we believe from our research would increase passenger numbers at Reigate by almost 100% and remove traffic from the roads around Redhill and Reigate plus reduce demand for parking at Redhill station.

This can be achieved by using splitting of trains from Victoria at Redhill station. As stated before the Victoria to Redhill train should call only at Clapham Junction and East Croydon before Redhill. Once at Redhill it should split, each Half hour the front portion should go to Reigate providing a half hourly service to Reigate from London. In the first half hour, the rear portion should extend to Tonbridge maintaining the existing service, in the second half hour the rear portion should extend to Gatwick, calling at Earlswood, Salfords and Horley providing a new hourly fast service from these stations to Victoria all day every day.

On Sundays, this service should reduce to Hourly providing a Tonbridge/Reigate to Victoria service only.

This proposal is an actual improvement to services from the Redhill Line, meaning Reigate gets the half-hourly all day service it deserves for the passenger numbers (much smaller stations get better services) and Earlswood/Salfords get a fast service to Victoria 6 days a week.

This proposal also reduces a significant problem at East Croydon and Redhill where a 4 coach train arrives from Reigate and is not sufficient for the passengers waiting, by taking up this proposal all services will be 8 coaches and mean that passengers are more likely to be able to get on the service.

There are additional comments regarding the provision of Platform 3 at Reigate in our general addendum.

Question 45 and 46: New Cross Gate removal

These proposals would remove the direct Monday to Saturday off peak journey opportunities from Gatwick Airport, Horley, Salfords, Earlswood, Redhill, Merstham, Coulsdon South and Purley to and from New Cross Gate. Passengers wishing to travel between the affected stations and New Cross Gate would be required to change trains at Norwood Junction.

Which station do you travel from?

How often do you travel between your station and New Cross Gate?

Never Daily Weekly Monthly Couple of times a year

What is your ultimate destination?

Any further comments on this proposal?

Generally, the removal of this connection from Redhill Line services is not supported. The connection at New Cross Gate provides a good connection to London Overground services up to Canary Wharf.

The connection to these services at Norwood Junction is not as good. There is less than half the London Overground services at Norwood Junction compared to New Cross Gate so onward connection is weaker, plus there are 5 intermediate stations that would not have to be passed through from Norwood Junction. Thus, Norwood Junction stops are significantly less useful than the New Cross Gate stops.

We would suggest that the Caterham/Tattenham to London Bridge services call at Norwood Junction and the Bedford to Gatwick services call at New Cross Gate.

Question 47:

Which option do you support?

Revising evening and Sunday services to be consistent with the proposed Monday to Saturday daytime frequency which would include direct trains between London Victoria, Reigate and Tonbridge

Retain the current evening and Sunday train frequency with direct trains to Bognor Regis (evenings and Sundays) and Brighton on Sundays only. Trains to Reigate and Tonbridge would be provided as shuttle trains starting from and terminating at Redhill

Any further comments on this proposal  

We agree with the principle that the Monday to Friday daytime service is repeated in the evenings, in particular to Victoria from Reigate and Tonbridge. Our view is that during the evenings and on Saturdays that Reigate needs a half hourly service to London allowing the residents of Reigate to return home easily after theatre in the evenings or days out. On Sundays, we believe this service could be reduced to hourly and interspersed with a through Brighton Service very half hour.

The Sunday fast service to Victoria could be provided half hourly by a train from Reigate/Tonbridge alternating with one from Brighton.

There is a lot of leisure travel to Brighton from Redhill Line on a Sunday and loss of direct services would not be welcome.

Question 48:

Do you have any specific comments in relation to services on Coastway West routes?

Comments

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 49: Proposals for increased train services between Brighton and Lewes

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 50: Proposals affecting train services between Brighton and Seaford

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 51: Proposals for faster journeys between Brighton, Lewes, Eastbourne, Hastings and Ore

Do you support this proposal?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 52:

Which option do you support?

Operate longer electric trains between Brighton and Eastbourne with connections to and from a two carriage diesel train between Eastbourne and Ashford International.

Operate longer electric trains between Brighton and Hastings with connections to and from a two carriage diesel train between Hastings and Ashford International

Continue to operate through trains between Brighton and Ashford International with the understanding that current capacity issues on the route are unlikely to be addressed in the short and medium term.

Any further comments on this proposal

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 53:

Do you have any specific comments in relation to services on Oxted routes?

This question does not directly affect our services.

We do though have concern about the East Grinstead services going to Victoria as it means 12 coach trains crossing Windmill Bridge over several flat crossings. Consideration should be given to East Grinstead trains diverting to London Bridge to avoid these conflicts.

Question 54:

We propose to introduce a new all day direct train service between Epsom, Sutton, West Croydon and London Bridge, increase the train frequency between Sutton and Epsom Downs (from 1tph to 2tph all day) and continue four trains per hour between Sutton, West Croydon, Norbury and London Victoria? To enable this we will need to remove the current direct train services between Sutton, West Croydon, Crystal Palace and Streatham Hill to enable these improvements. Do you support this?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 55:

Do you support the proposal to improve overall performance of the network by reducing the number of Monday to Friday and Saturday daytime trains between London Victoria and Selhurst via Norbury from 6tph (every 10 minutes) to 4tph (every 15 minutes)?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 56 and 57 – please answer as part of question 45 and 46 (repeated):

These proposals would remove the direct Monday to Saturday off peak journey opportunities from Gatwick Airport, Horley, Salfords, Earlswood, Redhill, Merstham, Coulsdon South and Purley to and from New Cross Gate. Passengers wishing to travel between the affected stations and New Cross Gate would be required to change trains at Norwood Junction.

Which station do you travel from?

How often do you travel between your station and New Cross Gate?

Never Daily Weekly Monthly Couple of times a year

What is your ultimate destination?

Any further comments on this proposal?

See answer to Question 45/6.

Question 58:

Are you in favour of Monday to Friday and Saturday daytime trains between Streatham Hill, Crystal Palace and Norwood Junction serving East Croydon, Purley and Coulsdon Town instead of West Croydon?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 59:

Are you in favour of introducing a faster all day service between Caterham and London Bridge instead of a stopping service via Sydenham?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This would be a positive move to encourage usage of the Caterham branch which has a large local population..

Question 60:

Do you support the diversion of stopping trains between New Cross Gate and Norwood Junction via Sydenham from East Croydon to West Croydon instead?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 61:

Do you support the diversion of stopping trains between London Bridge and Selhurst via Peckham Rye, Tulse Hill and Norbury from West Croydon to East Croydon, Purley and Caterham instead?

Yes or No

Any further comments on this proposal?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 62:

Do you have any other specific comments in relation to South London Metro services?

This question does not directly affect our services.

Question 63:

Which proposal do you support?

Extend services to or from Purley or Coulsdon Town

No longer operate beyond Selhurst

The proposed change does not affect me

Any further comments on this proposal?

Whilst not recommending it we wonder if instead of Coulsdon Town extension to Reigate or Gatwick via Redhill might resolve other issues.

Question 64:

Do you have any specific comments in relation to West London Line services?

This question does not directly affect our services.