Connecting Reigate to Thameslink

Closed 6 Apr 2020

Opened 24 Feb 2020

Overview

As part of our long-term strategy to upgrade the Brighton Main Line we’re proposing a new, 12-car turn back platform at Reigate station to provide greater capacity, a more reliable service and improved connections to Thameslink destinations in London and beyond.

Brighton Main Line Upgrade

The busiest and most congested route

The Brighton Main Line and the lines that feed into it, are among the busiest and most congested in the country, carrying 1,700 trains and 300,000 passengers every weekday.

Passengers using the line benefit from fast and frequent services to a wide range of destinations and recently more trains are running on time.  But, significant investment is still needed to improve reliability to the level passengers expect, and provide the extra capacity needed to accommodate rising passenger numbers.

Major proposals

In summer 2020, we will consult again on major proposals to unblock the most challenging bottleneck on the rail network at Croydon by rebuilding East Croydon station with two extra tracks and platforms and remodelling the complex series of junctions north of Croydon.

Our proposals to upgrade Reigate station, along with a £150m investment to upgrade Gatwick Airport station starting in May 2020, form another important part of our long-term strategy to upgrade the Brighton Main Line and its branches.

Current constraints

Short platforms

Short platforms at Reigate limit trains to 4-car length, meaning Southern services to/from London Victoria need to split/join at Redhill. This extends journey times during peak hours and limits train capacity at Reigate.

The new Thameslink trains are fixed to 8 or 12-car length meaning they cannot stop at Reigate’s 4-car platforms.  Currently, passengers bound for London Bridge or other Thameslink destinations need to change trains at Redhill or East Croydon.

Lack of capacity

Platform 2 is used by both Southern Brighton Main Line services turning back at Reigate and Great Western Railway services travelling from Redhill to Reading on the North Downs Line. The arrangement means we can’t run more trains to meet demand and reliability is affected by knock-on delay between services.

Insufficient power supply

The electrical power supply in the area is also limited, meaning the number and length of electric (Southern and Thameslink) trains able to run between Redhill and Reigate is constrained.

Our proposals

We would extend and widen the existing platform 2 and lay new track to create a new platform. Platform 3 would form the new dedicated 12-car Thameslink turn back facility.

The new platform would be built in the space occupied by the existing station car park, which would be relocated. This provides the opportunity to increase and upgrade the parking and access facilities at the station.

Benefits

  • Up to 12-car services to increase capacity.
  • Faster and more reliable services as trains from Reigate would no longer need to split and join at Redhill.
  • Direct Thameslink services from Reigate to London Bridge, St Pancras International and beyond.
  • A larger, improved car park, new access roads, and additional designated parking bays.
  • New designated parking bays on the northern side of the station and easier access to the ticket office and to platform 1.
  • In the longer term our plans to unblock the railway bottleneck at Croydon, provide the opportunity to significantly increase capacity and performance along the Brighton Main Line and its branch lines. The proposals for Reigate form an important part of these longer-term plans.

Proposed service alterations

A new, full length platform at Reigate provides the opportunity to improve the local train service in the short-term. In the long-term, if proposals to unblock the railway bottleneck at Croydon are delivered, additional trains would be able to serve the local area.

We are investigating possible timetable alterations which would result in some service changes at Reigate and other local stations including, Earlswood, Salfords and Horley. The option illustrated below shows one possible service pattern and we would like to hear your views.

Managing impacts

We are at the very early stages of developing our proposals but will work closely with local communities to manage disruption from our work.  We will also work with train operators to run as full a service as possible through Reigate station during the proposed upgrade.

As we develop the detail of the proposals we will continue to engage with residents, businesses and passengers to make them aware of our plans.

Next steps

Our proposals for Reigate station are currently unfunded, as are the wider proposals to upgrade the Brighton Main Line. Over the months and years ahead we will continue to make the case for investment in the Brighton Main Line railway.

You can share your views on the Reigate upgrade proposals by freepost or by filling in our online survey.

Comments can be shared from 24 February to 6 April 2020.

Get in touch

If you have any questions about our proposals for Reigate and wider Brighton Main Line Upgrade proposals, please e-mail consultation@cars2.networkrail.co.uk Or contact us on Network Rail’s National Helpline on 03457 11 41 41 or follow us @NetworkRailSE

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