‘TfL should take over south London train services’ says new report

News Desk (21 January, 2016) Transport

Think tank claims that rail networks ‘not delivering’

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Transport for London should take over all south London train services, a think said in a new report released last week, writes Helen Reid…

The Centre for London think tank, in a report called Turn South London Orange, slammed south London rail networks for ‘not delivering’ and found what it called a ‘serious rail capacity gap’.

The plans, if implemented, could see the number of trains across the network increase to six per hour, a spokeswoman for the think tank said.

The report highlights transport issues in Southwark, and points towards particular concerns in Camberwell. It says that there have been nine separate Bakerloo line schemes since the 1920s, leaving some unfinished tunnels, and a tenth proposal is under consideration.

TfL is currently consulting on a proposed new extension to the line, which would go through the borough, but the preferred track would see a new station at Old Kent Road, not at Camberwell as local campaigners had hoped.

“A local station catchment map shows that a combination of a Camberwell Thameslink station and at least one Old Kent Road Bakerloo extension station could put much of this part of inner South-East London ‘on the map’,” said the spokeswoman.

“This would be allied with higher density developments, for example at Old Kent Road. A further increase in service levels would benefit connectivity, with the possibility of direct services with Streatham/Sutton/Wimbledon and Peckham/Catford/Bromley.”

The report foresees that the viaduct space of the former Camberwell station, which lies intact just south of Camberwell New Road, could be re-used with adaptation.

A spokesman for the Rail Delivery Group, which represents train operators and Network Rail, said: “Some of the best rail passenger satisfaction levels in London and the South East are being achieved on services commissioned by both Transport for London (TfL) and the Department for Transport (DfT). Private train companies already work effectively with TfL, whether by operating London Overground or ensuring that passengers can use their tickets to travel across both TfL and national rail.

“The railway is carrying record numbers of passengers, and substantial investment is delivering improvements for customers including major projects in London. The rail industry is ready to work with national and local government to deliver even better rail services that meet the needs of commuters living inside and outside the Greater London area.”

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