Latest Rail News

08.01.15

Boris to quiz NR bosses over ‘dangerous’ London Bridge disruption

Mayor of London Boris Johnson is to meet Network Rail officials today to discuss the days of travel disruption faced at London Bridge station, which rolled into this morning. 

Throughout the week passengers at the station, which is being rebuilt as part of the £6.5bn Thameslink Programme, have experienced delays, cancellations and ‘dangerous levels’ of congestion on the concourse. 

Network Rail and Southern have apologised for what they call “unacceptable” disruption to passengers at London Bridge in recent days. 

A spokesperson said: “Over the festive break we undertook 16 days of work rebuilding two new platforms, removing and replacing 3km of track and installing new signalling into London Bridge. This work was completed on time.” 

However, Network Rail has admitted the new timetable has proved “challenging to manage”. 

It added that the timetable has been reviewed and some immediate changes to a small number of evening peak services, which is expected to reduce the pressure on the infrastructure, have been put in place. 

“We will monitor the service this week and assess if any longer term changes are required,” said the infrastructure owner. 

This morning some Southern trains had been delayed by up to 15 minutes due to further signalling problems at the station. But a normal service is now running. 

Yesterday National Rail said “all routes” through London Bridge were affected, and Tuesday night delays during the rush hour, coupled with a queuing system, made for a dangerous situation. 

One passenger, Sonia Hogg, tweeted: “London Bridge – why re-open if it’s not ready?? It’s chaos with the delays!!!” 

During today’s meeting with Network Rail, Boris Johnson will aim to find out, exactly, what has gone wrong and what lessons can be learned. 

A spokesperson for the mayor said: “The mayor shares the frustration of commuters and sympathises with them over the enormous inconvenience they’ve endured. 

“He will be raising the recent disruption at London Bridge and indeed the chaotic scenes at Finsbury Park over Christmas with Network Rail when he meets with them. The mayor wants to hear what went wrong, and to understand what lessons can be learned and how the situation can be better managed going forward.”

(Image: c. John Stillwell)

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