Latest Rail News

18.07.16

Lines into London Bridge closed after hole found under tracks

Two lines into London Bridge have closed after a 4m deep hole was found under the railway tracks at Forest Hill.

The hole means that the already troubled Southern services will face even more disruption tonight as Southern and Thameslink passengers are advised to use Victoria or Blackfriars instead.

Network Rail engineers will work through the night to fill the hole with more than 50 tonnes of ballast.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: “Our aim is to have the railway fixed for tomorrow morning but holes like this can be unpredictable. Until the ballast is packed into the hole we won’t know for certain if the hole is stable or not so passengers are advised to check before they travel.”

The delays will add to the problems of Southern and Thameslink’s parent company Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), whose PPM has fallen to 66.8% as a result of problems including delays as part of upgrades at London Bridge and strikes by RMT.

London mayor Sadiq Khan has called for GTR to be stripped of the Southern franchise, whilst Campaign for Better Transport has said the government should intervene and rail minister Claire Perry has resigned after saying the issue felt “like a failure”.

Until 10pm, passengers should expect the following disruptions:

  • Horsham passengers are advised to travel via Victoria or Blackfriars
  • Caterham and Tattenham Corner trains will start as normal from London Bridge but may be subject to delay or cancellation due to diversion on the way in
  • Victoria to London Bridge trains are still planned to run but are being diverted via Peckham Rye, some services may only run between London Victoria and Beckenham Junction
  • Uckfield trains will start as normal from London Bridge but may be subject to delay or cancellation due to diversion on the way in
  • Thameslink services between Brighton and London Bridge are starting/terminating at Gatwick Airport
  • Trains between London Bridge and Eastbourne will run from either London Victoria or East Croydon.
  • Southern tickets are being accepted on London Buses, London Underground, South West Trains, Southeastern and London Overground services on any reasonable route tonight.

From 10pm to 4am, Network Rail will close all four lines between Norwood Junction and London Bridge while they make repairs to the infrastructure, meaning all services between London Bridge and East Croydon will face disruptions.

To see if your journey is affected, click here.

UPDATE 19 July

The delays are due to continue today after a collapsed sewer was found on the site of the hole.

The following disruptions are expected:

Southern

  • Trains will not be able to call at stations between London Bridge and Anerley.
  • Passengers are advised to use trains from London Victoria or London Blackfriars instead of London Bridge.
  • East Croydon is expected to be very busy and passengers are advised not to change trains at this station.
  • Services from London Bridge to East Grinstead / Caterham / Tattenham Corner/ Uckfield will be diverted via Peckham Rye and will not call at stations between London Bridge and Anerley.
  • Services from London Bridge to Eastbourne / Littlehampton / Bognor Regis will be mostly cancelled.
  • Services from London Bridge to Horsham will be diverted to London Victoria.

Thameslink

  • Trains will not run between London Bridge and Brighton until at least 14:00.
  • Passengers are advised to use Thameslink services between Blackfriars and Brighton or a Southern service from London Victoria.

London Overground

  • Trains will not run between West Croydon / Crystal Palace and New Cross Gate.

Paul Rutter, area director for Network Rail, said: “We apologise sincerely for the disruption and assure passengers both Network Rail and Thames Water are working hard  to restore the railway to full capacity."

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Comments

Andrew Gwilt   18/07/2016 at 19:59

Well that's even more frustrating as Southern have seen so many problems with cutting 341 trains a day and planning to have more strikes which could see Southern Trains go bust and even face liquidation and it be the death of Southern Railways and TSGN will be rebranded as TGN if Southern collapses.

John Grant   19/07/2016 at 10:43

Hope they realised it was a collapsed sewer before they dropped the 50 tonnes of ballast into it!

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