Action on Railways

There are thousands of people using not only Horsham station itself but also, among others within the constituency Billingshurst, Christ’s Hospital, Littlehaven, Warnham, Faygate and Balcombe stations for whom a regular, reliable service is absolutely critical.

Jeremy absolutely understands residents’ frustration regarding poor rail performance and it has been a huge focus for Jeremy since his first-election in 2015. Jeremy has regularly represented residents’ views at the highest levels in the Government, GTR and Network Rail.

Jeremy recognises the underlying issues on our local lines:  passenger numbers have nearly doubled in recent years but the lines themselves form part of what is globally the most complex and intensely used rail network .  They are also reliant on some of the oldest infrastructure:  such as (within the constituency) Balcombe Tunnel which has been in continuous use since 1841.  Local lines had also been starved of investment for decades.

This was an extremely unhappy combination - creating a higher risk of failures than elsewhere and, once those failures had occurred, a massively enhanced risk of severe knock-on disruption across the entire network:  the lines were working close to capacity with little resilience when problems struck.

2010 marked the start of a massive investment programme. In the short term this meant severe disruption as a direct impact of the investment: including the knock-on impact of rebuilding London Bridge Station and the newly acquired modern rolling stock proving the catalyst for changing working practices and as a result a difficult industrial dispute.

Jeremy campaigned hard for passengers in parliament and in lobbying Government:  it was after a long campaign and in response to Jeremy’s question in PMQs that the original (ground breaking) Southern Rail additional compensation scheme received the commitment of the Prime Minister.

Jeremy recognises that the overall performance is still far from perfect but that there has been a recent  improvement in the service as the new timetable, new rolling stock and new through-London services are all beginning to make a positive difference to passengers and the resilience of the service.

Jeremy encourages residents to write to him about their experiences of the train service, giving as much detail as possible. 

Please see below for latest updates from Jeremy on railways:

News

Level Crossing Assurances Secured

Since investment and safety improvements on Horsham’s Parsonage Road Level Crossing local residents have been deeply concerned by hold ups caused by safety barriers being down for longer.

Rail Strikes

*PLEASE NOTE THAT THE BELOW POST HAS SINCE BEEN OVERTAKEN BY EVENTS.*

I am pleased to report that the strike action due to take place has been suspended and should not be going ahead. Passengers should however check journey planners before travelling.

Rail Strikes

The RMT union has announced that further industrial action will take place on Saturday 1 and Saturday 8 October. The effect of this will be very similar to the strike action that took place over the summer.

Billingshurst Rail Services

I recently wrote again to GTR to raise constituents' concerns regarding the recent changes to the rail service from Billingshurst to London Bridge. 

Billingshurst Rail Services

I have been contacted by several constituents about changes to the rail service from Billingshurst to London Bridge from Sunday 4th September.

Rail Strikes

The RMT union has announced that further industrial action will take place on Thursday 18 and Saturday 20 August. The effect of this will be very similar to the strike action that took place in June and July.

Rail Strikes

The RMT union has announced that further industrial action will take place tomorrow (Wednesday 27 July). The effect of this will be very similar to the strike action that took place last month.

Why The RMT is Wrong

As a nation we have an opportunity. We have strong employment and record vacancies.  

Rail Strikes

As many constituents will be aware, the RMT union has announced three days of national strike action this Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday across Network Rail and 13 train operating companies.