Network Rail to reopen Redhill-Tonbridge line early as Edenbridge landslip repairs speed ahead
(Press release Network Rail:) 10 March 2020 - Network Rail will reopen the railway between Redhill and Tonbridge two weeks earlier than expected once repairs to the Edenbridge landslip have been completed, on Monday, 16 March.
Since the railway closed on 22 December, Network Rail engineers and contractors BAM Nuttall have been working round the clock to repair the landslip, one of the largest in the history of this region’s railway, and Southern have been running weekday shuttle trains from Edenbridge to Tonbridge, and buses over the rest of the route.
Network Rail’s route director for Kent, Fiona Taylor, said: ‘This has been an incredibly challenging landslip for us to repair and it has been a difficult time for passengers too. I’m so grateful to them for their patience and understanding they’ve shown to us this winter and I’m really pleased we are able to open their railway sooner than we expected. It’s a huge tribute to all the people who are working so hard on site to get this job done.’
Southern Customer Service Director Chris Fowler said: ‘The early reopening of the Tonbridge-Redhill route through Edenbridge is good news for our passengers whom we have kept on the move with shuttle trains and buses. We want everyone whose journeys have been delayed by 15 minutes or more to claim the compensation they are due. We have a simple claim form online and passengers can make up to five claims at a time. Many passengers will additionally be entitled to claim enhanced compensation because they will have been delayed many times. Furthermore, we declassified first class throughout the period to create as much space as possible and so passengers with first class tickets can claim the difference as well. All this information is posted clearly on our website www.southernrailway.com.’
The landslip occurred over a 30m section of embankment, where the railway is carried high over the River Eden and surrounding fields. It followed a month’s worth of rain in one week in December.
A further 400m of railway is being shored up to prevent any further problems in the area.
Notes to Editors
- Work continues at the landslip at East Grinstead.
- The Redhill-Tonbridge line was commissioned in 1836 and is one of the oldest in the country.
- Over 40,000 tonnes of stone have been brought in to repair the landslip, delivered on 40 trains.
- The railway is constructed of Wealden Clay, which is not used in modern railway building, and it slid towards the river Eden following a prolonged period of heavy raid in November and December.
About Network Rail
We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
Every day, there are more than 4.8 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.
Follow us on Twitter: @networkrail
Visit our online newsroom: www.networkrailmediacentre.co.uk