Southern to restore timetable in full by the end of the month

Posted On 20 Oct 2016 at 10:15 am

Train company Southern said that it would restore its full timetable by the end of the month.

But some Gatwick Express services up and down the Brighton mainline will be cut until December because of leaves on the line.

And the train journey times will be up to three minutes longer in the timetable to try to give more certainty to passengers, Southern said.

The pledge to restore services fully comes almost four months after the company cut 341 services as it wrestled with staff shortages, high rates of sickness and a long-running industrial dispute.

The dispute, with guards belonging to the RMT union, continues. Three more strikes are planned before Christmas.

Southern said that trains to, from and through Hove are among 34 West Coastway services due to be restored net Monday (24 October).

Southern trains stock shot
A week later the company said that it would be start running the outstanding 46 services between Brighton and Southampton, Hastings and Ashford, marking an end to its temporary timetable.

The company said: “This will complete the restoration of all Southern services removed as part of the revised timetable introduced earlier this year.”

Charles Horton, chief executive of Southern’s parent company Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), said: “I’m delighted for our passengers that we will be restoring more services to the timetable.

“This is what our passengers deserve and I thank them for their patience during what has been a difficult time for everyone.

“Clearly the industrial relations issues we have are, regrettably, continuing. But we are pressing ahead with our plans and are committed to delivering a better service for everyone.”

GTR said that 33 Gatwick Express services would not return until Monday 12 December as part of its “autumn leaf-fall arrangements”.

Picture by Phil Richards on Flickr

Picture by Phil Richards on Flickr


The company said: “In line with the rest of the industry, GTR is taking steps to better manage the impact of leaf-fall seasonal conditions on passenger services and is leaving these services out until the end of autumn which it says will help reduce congestion and reactionary delays on the busy Brighton mainline route.

“During the leaf-fall period, with challenging slippery rail conditions, trains take longer to reach their destinations, leading to congestion, cancellations and delays.

“In recognition of this from Monday 24 October until Friday 9 December, weekday Southern and Gatwick Express trains arriving or departing from London Victoria or London Bridge may have their journey times extended by between one and three minutes.

“Weekday Thameslink trains on the busy Brighton mainline from Three Bridges to Brighton and from Brighton to London Bridge will also have their journey times extended by up to three minutes.

“These changes will result in more reliable journey times, giving greater certainty for passengers.”

Mr Horton said: “Challenging conditions during the autumn mean that train services across the country become vulnerable to poor weather and slippery rails, compromising performance and certainty for passengers.

“We, like other train operators in the UK, are taking steps to reduce the risk of disruption during the period.”

Details of the changes to train times are now in the National Rail journey planner at. www.nationalrail.co.uk.

For more information about leaves on the line, visit www.nationalrail.co.uk/leaf-fall.

  1. Pingback: Southern to restore full timetable by the end of October | Southdown Rise Residents Association

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