WEST SUSSEX RAIL USERS ASSOCIATION
64, Brampton Court, Stockbridge Road, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 8PD
Tel: 01243 788028
Southern has been advised by the RMT Union that its conductor members will strike on the above dates. This will have a significant effect on Southern services on the whole of the days affected, with no service on some routes and only a limited service between approximately 06.30 and 22.00 on others. The lines with no service include: Clapham Junction to Milton Keynes via Kensington Olympia; Preston Park to Hove and Chichester to Portsmouth Harbour and Southampton Central (but there will be buses between Chichester and Havant). This year our guest speaker will be Alex Foulds, Southern’s Business Improvement Director. Mr Foulds will address us after the formal business of the AGM has been completed and there be ample time for you to ask questions on Southern’s recent problems and performance and their plans for the future, especially the 2018 timetable changes.
For these strike days, Southern is making good use of those conductor and other resources available to them and there will be trains into the late evening on most lines rather than ceasing at 18.30 as on previous strike days. So for the 5 strike days there will be an improved but still limited service between approximately 06.30 and 22.00 between Chichester and Victoria via Horsham, Gatwick and Redhill; Brighton to Bognor via Littlehampton; Horsham to Victoria via and Sutton and Brighton to Eastbourne via Lewes. Trains between Redhill to Tonbridge will run from 06.00 to 20.00. There will also be buses every 30 minutes between Chichester and Havant between 06.00 and 18.30.
Timetables of these services are at http://www.southernrailway.com/your-journey/strike/what-services-are-running/ on the Southern website. These trains are expected to be extremely busy especially in the peak hours and Southern cannot guarantee there will be space for you to travel. Southern strongly advise you to travel outside peak times where possible. Also, try to avoid planning to travel on the last trains of the day – if you are unable to board services they will not be able to arrange alternative transport. On all Southern and Gatwick Express trains first class accommodation will be declassified. Similarly first class on Thameslink will be declassified between Brighton and London. Normal peak hour ticket restrictions will remain in force.
The timetables are basically similar to those for previous strike days and show that there will be a train every 30 minutes along the Arun Valley from Victoria to Chichester calling at all stations and starting around 06.30 but with the last train from Victoria through to Chichester at 21.39 (Bognor’s last connection will be off the 21.09 from Victoria). In the opposite direction the last train from Chichester to Victoria will be at 21.23 (Bognor’s last connection will be at 20.50) followed by a 21.53 to Horsham. Along the West Coastway there will be a train every 30 minutes between Brighton and Bognor via Littlehampton. This connects with the Chichester to Three Bridges trains at Barnham. There will be no direct trains between Littlehampton and Victoria via Hove, so a change of train at Brighton will be necessary for those travelling from stations between Littlehampton and Hove. I have tried to simplify the Arun Valley timetable with its onward connections into the table on the next page and I hope you will find it helpful. But remember to keep your eye on the website in case there are last minute changes.
Our Annual General Meeting took place on 29 October in Horsham. The formal business of the Chairman’s report, approval of accounts and approval of the revised Constitution was followed by the election of the following officers and Committee members: Roger Keyworth as Chairman and Trevor Tupper as Secretary/Treasurer. Committee – Valerie Webb, Michael Gill, James Marchant, Antony Fletcher and Kevin Gordon. This is a slightly smaller Committee than in previous years but all major stations are represented.
The formal business was followed by an address from Alex Foulds, Southern’s Business Improvement Director. Mr Foulds brought us up to date on the current industrial action and plans for the future largely around the new timetable for May 2018 on which we were urged to contribute to. He then answered the questions from members. A full report of the AGM will be posted on our website in due course. Arun Valley timetable for 11 to 13 October (and other strike days unless otherwise advised).
A few members have not yet paid their subscription and if you have not paid, a renewal form is enclosed. The subscription remains at £2 and can be paid by cheque through the post, by direct bank credit or by standing order, the renewal form gives details of all these options. A few did not pay their subscription for last year and rather than deleting them as members, we are asking them to pay for two years and for those members the payment slip shows £4.
Your Officers have attended a Forum on the GTR proposals a few weeks ago and we met some of the team last Thursday to discuss those changes affecting the Arun Valley and West Coastway lines. There will be further discussion on the detail in the spring, but we can tell you that there will be additional trains from Horsham to London Bridge in the peak, some of which will be Thameslink running through to Peterborough, and an extra and earlier London Bridge train from Bognor. On Sundays, the existing hourly services to Victoria from Bognor and Portsmouth will combine at Horsham and run in the same stopping pattern as weekday off-peak trains giving a faster service than currently. We will keep you up to date on developments.
b – change at Barnham; e – change at East Croydon; t – change at Three Bridges; g – change at Gatwick
The West Coastway timetable is an all stations service starting from Bognor at 0650, Barnham 0705, Littlehampton 0718, Worthing 0738 arriving Brighton 0806. The service is repeated every 30 minutes with the last train from Bognor at 2050 arriving Brighton 2206. In the opposite direction the first train is 0716 from Brighton arriving Bognor at 0831. The last one is 2146 from Brighton arriving Bognor at 2301. The replacement bus service between Chichester and Havant will leave Chichester at 0648, 0719, 0805, 08.40 and then every 30 minutes until 1910. From Havant at 0610, 0640, and then every 30 minutes to 1740. The buses will have an approximate overall journey time of 35 minutes and will serve all stations with stops at Southbourne, Nutbourne and Fishbourne at the railway stops on the A259.
There is an hourly service (with some bus replacement) between Horsham and Victoria via Dorking calling at all stations. Trains leave Horsham at 0549, 0621 0653, 0720,0753, 0841 bus to Dorking, 1004 and hourly to 1404, 1441 bus to Dorking, 1604, 1707, 1734, 1741 bus to Dorking, 1904 and 2006. From Victoria trains leave at 0552, 0617, 0706, 0819, 0931,1031, 1132, 1232, 1331 (bus from Dorking), 1431, 1531, 1617 (bus from Dorking), 1720, 1750, 1820, 1920 and 2326