Southeastern services on the Bexleyheath, Dartford and Greenwich lines will only go to Cannon Street if current proposals are approved.

At the moment the lines serve Charing Cross, Cannon Street, Blackfriars and Victoria, with stops at London Bridge and Waterloo East.

An “option for improvement” put forward by the Department for Transport suggests that this “operational complexity” contributes to delays.

Commuters in the affected areas hit back and claimed the reduction would “ruin our lives. We won’t be able to get to work, areas will suffer, house prices drop [sic].”

A petition has been set up against the proposal, although the consultation is still open, which has more than 1000 signatures.

The report released by the DfT states: “Services on the South Eastern network are complex, with many stations offering multiple routes into central London and a choice of London stations including Charing Cross, Cannon Street, Blackfriars and Victoria, with intermediate stops at London Bridge and Waterloo East.

“For example, services from Lewisham run to Cannon Street, Charing Cross and Victoria.

“While this increases direct journey opportunities for passengers, it also introduces operational complexity, requiring trains to cross complex and busy junctions.

“This is a major contributor to delays, and makes it much harder to recover the service when things go wrong.”

The proposal is part of a consultation and members of the public are invited to respond.

The report continues: “There would be a limit to the improvements that could be made to the timetable without also reducing the number of central London stations served from certain locations at particular times.

“An example might be for all Metro services on the north Kent (between Dartford and Charlton), Greenwich and Bexleyheath lines to terminate at Cannon Street only.

“We believe that the simplicity of a regular service to a single London terminal throughout the day would benefit both regular and occasional passengers.

“A simpler service can help deliver a step-change improvement in the punctuality of both Metro and Mainline services.

“We are aware that losing direct connections to particular central London stations has the potential to inconvenience a number of passengers, by requiring them to change their usual journey patterns.”

To respond to the consultation visit the Department for Transport website, and to view the petition click here.


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