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2015 timetable changes to accommodate London Bridge disruption

Southeastern has published advance details of how its timetable will change from January to accommodate the Thameslink programme and London Bridge upgrade.

These are the details it gave of the “principal changes”:

• Charing Cross trains won’t stop at London Bridge from January 2015 until August 2016. Then Cannon Street trains won’t stop there until early 2018

• Greenwich line services will no longer run direct to Charing Cross and will only run to Cannon Street, and there will be fewer peak trains (one less train in the morning peak, and three less trains in the evening peak). The line will be served by longer trains to boost capacity in the peak hour

• New Cross and St Johns trains will only run to Cannon Street

• Some trains will be diverted to London Blackfriars instead of Cannon Street or Charing Cross

• Longer metro trains to increase capacity

• Longer opening hours for Cannon Street station (0500-0100), including all day opening on Sundays. (Cannon Street tube station to also offer longer opening hours)

• Diversion of some trains on Metro and Mainline services such as from Rochester, Broadstairs, Ashford, Dover and Orpington into London Blackfriars

• All current Rochester to Bedford and Ashford to Bedford services (and vice versa) will start and  terminate at London Blackfriars

• Catford Loop services no longer part of the Southeastern timetable (as these will have transferred to the new Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern franchise in December)

Long-term service improvements include:

• Highspeed:

1. A new Highspeed ‘rounder’ service improving connections between London and North / East Kent, providing another choice of London terminal

2. Highspeed trains will stop at Snodland, Birchington-on-Sea, Martin Mill and Walmer for the first time

3. Extra seats on the Highspeed service (with 698 seats at Ashford in the morning peak and 349 extra seats from Ebbsfleet.)

4. Two additional Highspeed trains from Margate and Broadstairs creating a half hourly service at these stations in the morning peak

5. An additional Highspeed service from Ramsgate via Canterbury to St Pancras

• A reduction of splitting and joining on the Mainline and Highspeed services

• A new hourly direct off-peak service between Maidstone East and Canterbury West

• A new fast service from Hastings to Charing Cross departing at 0804 and a Charing Cross to Hastings service departing at 1620, offering a 90 minute journey time

• A new peak hour service from Maidstone East to Blackfriars departing at 0845

• A new Blackfriars to Maidstone East service departing at 0719

• New additional services between Dartford and London Victoria at 0640 and then new later services half hourly from 1905 until 2308 (Dartford to Victoria) and from 2039 until 0009 (Victoria to Dartford)

• A new direct through-service between London Victoria and Sheerness-on-Sea (two trains in the morning peak and two trains in the evening peak)

Charles Horton, managing director of Southeastern, said: “The project to rebuild London Bridge station is an enormous challenge and one of the biggest railway construction projects since the Second World War.

“The government investment will provide a brand new station with a concourse the size of the pitch at Wembley Stadium, new journey opportunities to the north and south of England, and this will untangle the railway lines to remove the bottleneck we experience today.

“This will however, mean our passengers, particularly those who use London Bridge station will need to change their travel patterns while the work is carried out. We’ve got a huge job to provide a service that meets demand at a time when track capacity has much reduced, and we’ve developed a timetable – with new journey opportunities, longer trains and later services to help meet that challenge.”

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