Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Kent commuters face continued travel gloom


KENT COMMUTERS will continue to suffer standing journeys into London, despite the Strategic Rail Authority's (SRA) latest proposals to upgrade services.

However, in the future it assures the use of faster trains will mean commuting pain will not last so long.

The SRA's Integrated Kent Franchise train service specification (IKR), published last week, warns that the long-awaited introduction of domestic commuter services on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link will only allow substitution rather than addition of commuter services.

And while faster services are promised on the high speed line, the SRA report suggests that passengers travelling on these routes are likely to pay a premium.

Pinch points like the Rochester Bridge Junction are part of the problem, according to Transport for London head of rail sponsorship and liaison Robert Wallace.

'There would be extra room if the junction was re-signalled or re-profiled, ' he said.

'But it is not on the SRA agenda to improve infrastructure.'

TFL expects that many of the Kent residents occupying the 115,000 new homes proposed by deputy prime minister John Prescott will commute into the capital. But without infrastructure improvements, said Wallace, there will not be enough capacity.

In Ashford, for example, the four trains an hour which service Charing Cross will be reduced to two, plus two high speed trips to St Pancras.

TFL is also worried the plan will increase crowding on London Underground as commuters are delivered to St Pancras rather than to Victoria or the City as before.

Deadline for the response to the consultation is 23 April.

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Please note comments made online may also be published in the print edition of New Civil Engineer. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.