Notices of disruption of services from TfL:
TFL RAIL: Sunday 5 September, no service between Liverpool Street and Shenfield. Use Central line connections between Liverpool Street and Stratford / Newbury Park. Replacement buses operate.
TFL RAIL: Sunday 12 September, between 1000 and 2200, a reduced service operates between Liverpool Street and Gidea Park. Trains towards Shenfield will not stop at Harold Wood and Brentwood at these times. Please use local bus connections between Gidea Park and Harold Wood, and travel via Shenfield for Brentwood.
TFL RAIL: Sunday 19 September, between 1000 and 2200, a reduced service operates between Liverpool Street and Gidea Park. Trains towards Shenfield will not stop at Harold Wood and Brentwood at these times. Please use local bus connections between Gidea Park and Harold Wood, and travel via Shenfield for Brentwood.
Current train timetables and information.
Lift to platforms 2&3 now working
15/7/21 The lift to platform 2&3 was out of order earlier today but has now been repaired.
Senior Citzens Railcard
Senior Citizens railcards are now available from the Brentwood rail station ticket office.
Station ticket office times reinstated
The BBARUA Rail Officer wrote to TfL customer services objecting to cuts in Brentwood Station ticket office opening hours and TfL agreed to a review by the management team after 17th May 2021.
The station ticket office is now to be open all day except for a lunch break of 40 minutes.
From Greater Anglia (24th September 2021):
Here’s the latest update from Greater Anglia (GA), with information on performance, travel advice, completion of the station upgrade project for Saxmundham station, the discovery of historic railway artefacts at March (as part of another station upgrade project) and other recent developments. Performance
It’s mostly been another very good week for performance with punctuality averaging 95.2% across our network. The one notable exception was the overhead line damage just north of Ipswich yesterday, which caused disruption to services passing through that area for much of the day, although Network Rail colleagues did a good job of getting the problem fixed quicker than was initially expected.
There have been no changes to travel advice this week. All train operators are operating in line with government guidance which states that it “…..expects and recommends that people wear face coverings in crowded areas, such as public transport.” We are therefore asking customers to wear face coverings on busy stations and on busy trains (unless they are exempt).
Our experience is that the majority of customers are following the prevailing guidance. Of course, customers can also choose to wear a face covering throughout their journey if they wish, not just on busy stations and trains.
Full details of the current coronavirus advice and guidance are available on the government website. Please also note that face coverings remain mandatory on public transport in London, in Wales and in Scotland.
Across the rail network customers who are travelling by train can travel with confidence, knowing that we are taking all the appropriate steps to make their journey safe, clean and straight forward.
The next timetable changes are planned for next week (see next item as a reminder of the details), where we will be adding in services to reflect school terms starting and more people commuting to work again.
We remain fully focused on maintaining an excellent standard of service for everyone taking the train. Our actions are in line with our safer travel pledge, which includes providing appropriate services and capacity, additional cleaning, making it easier to keep your hands clean and providing information to help you travel safely.
There is still plenty of space on the vast majority of services but, as previously highlighted, at busier times we are encouraging customers to use the full capacity of the train, as most of the services which might be busy in one or two carriages have more space further down the train.
Some routes, especially at peak times, may also have convenient alternative services with more capacity available, either not long before or not long after the train you were originally planning. On our website we have our less busy trains tool, which we’ve recently revised and updated to make it even more user-friendly, which lists services with fewer passengers (https://www.greateranglia.co.uk/travel-information/less-busy-trains). If you can be flexible, you can then adjust your journey accordingly, if that works for you.
We continue to monitor to all services on a daily basis and review service frequency and capacity on the basis of the emerging trends, in line with the prevailing government guidance. The government is also encouraging everyone to use the Covid-19 Test and Trace App as part of the wider efforts to prevent the spread of the virus and encouraging everyone who is currently eligible to get their vaccinations.
We will continue to deliver our additional cleaning measures - including more train cleaners, new PacVac equipment for turnaround train cleaning during the day and special testing equipment to carry out random hygiene tests on trains (to help us raise standards even further) - as well as cleaning every single carriage with fogging guns (which disinfect all surfaces, including seats, arm rests, grab handles and windows) to supplement the extra cleaning already being implemented in these high contact areas.
We have also been carrying our random checks for coronavirus on our trains, with no traces found on any test to date, and extra cleaning at stations, where the fogging guns come in handy for larger indoor areas, such as waiting rooms.
Saxmundham station upgrade
We were pleased to welcome the Rt Hon Therese Coffey MP and other local stakeholders (pictured) to mark the completion of an upgrade project at Saxmundham station on the East Suffolk line earlier today.
The £1.3 million project includes a new waiting room with new seats, air conditioning and plug/USB points; a new location for the ticket vending machine under the refurbished platform canopy and a new northbound platform with a new shelter, seating, access ramp and fencing.
There’s also an expanded car park with 48 spaces (including 2 blue badge parking spaces) and motor cycle parking. A new pedestrian access point has been provided for the southbound platform and the whole station now benefits from CCTV coverage. In addition, a new wildlife garden is being created by station adopters Sarah Ford and Deborah Dann, with support from East Suffolk District Council and Saxmundham Town Council.
The scheme benefitted from a contribution from the Railway Heritage Trust, whilst wider partnership working on East Suffolk Line issues continues with Suffolk County Council and the East Suffolk Lines Community Rail Partnership. We’re also grateful to the local Network Rail signalling team who will manage the opening/closing of the new waiting room in a great example of partnership working.
Historic railway artefacts found at March station
Some historic railway artefacts have been found at March station, during the major station upgrade that’s currently underway at the Cambridgeshire station. March is gaining a new ticket office, waiting facilities, toilets, retail outlet, extra car parking and improved interchange facilities as part of the Fenland District Council Stations Masterplan for March, Manea and Whittlesea - with a £9.5million package of funding from the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority, chaired by Mayor Dr Nik Johnson, and support from Greater Anglia.
Whilst undertaking some of the refurbishment work, contractors came across a station ledger (pictured), dated April 1885, which contains carefully hand-written entries of all the passenger luggage and parcels sent from the station, providing a unique record of daily life in the area in Victorian times. They also found another ledger; three small log books from the late 1800s; a Victorian Great Eastern Railway sack (which farmers could use to transport seeds or grain); documents over 100 years old detailing goods trains passing through the station (with records of the signal boxes contacted by telegraph and the confirmation records) and a rather more recent series of British Rail Red Star consignment notes, and a record card, dating from 1989. All of the “finds” will be retained and preserved with advice from the Railway Heritage Designation Board and it is hoped some of them can go on display at the upgraded station in future. Other developments
Other recent developments have included :
We have played our part in supporting the new rail industry “We Mean Green” campaign highlighting the green credentials of rail travel, encouraging people to take the train and emphasising the key role of rail in the national decarbonisation agenda, which is especially timely given the upcoming CO26 climate summit in Glasgow.
We have launched a survey to help us continue to improve our service for disabled customers and thereby ensure they can return to train travel with confidence. The survey aims to find out what went well for people with accessibility needs when travelling during the pandemic, as well as any issues or problems they may have encountered, thereby helping to identify and prioritise future improvements, so they are happy to be regular rail travellers in future.
The latest Greater Anglia Stakeholder Advisory Board and Integrated Transport Forum meetings took place which, as ever, provided valuable input and advice on strategy and prioritisation on service delivery and key improvements for the months ahead. And finally…..
Thanks to colleagues across Greater Anglia for again providing a very good service for our customers and communities across East Anglia, with valuable support from colleagues at Network Rail, Stadler, Alstom and our other rail industry partners.
Have a good weekend.
Head of Corporate Affairs
T: +44 (0) 7767 644267
One Stratford Place
Crossrail's Elizabeth Line was due to be running in 2018.
The central section from Paddington to Abbey Wood is now projected to open in the first half of 2022. Trains now run between Shenfield and Liverpool Street, between Paddington and Reading and also from Paddington to Heathrow.
The delay has has been blamed on the Coronavirus epidemic but there are also said to be delays due to the complexity of the new signalling system.
These problems are impacting on the already strained finances of TfL.
TfL have published a video (link) about the Elizabeth Line
An update on Crossrail from the September 2021 edition of Modern Railways magazine states that the earliest opening date is Feb 2022 with a 50/50 chance of opening by April 2022 and an 80% chance by June 2022.
There is a final remark about the possibility that Ilford and Romford stations may not be ready in time.
Crossrail fares in use now see video
Latest TfL video (September 2021)
Link to TfL
Reopening of entrance/exit to platform 4 and new help point
The level access entrance to platform 4 at Brentwood Rail Station is now open all day.
Members of BBARUA had noticed that the gate was closed and found that it was only open around the morning and evening rush hours.
BBARUA contacted Jim Hoare of the Brentwood Access Group who in turn contacted MTR who are responsible for running the station.
MTR reopened the gate on 23 July 2020.
A new help point has been installed between platforms 2 and 3.
TfL’s Brentwood Station Help Point U-turn
Transport for London has agreed to locate a help point on platform four at Brentwood station,
reversing its earlier view that one on a footbridge at the top of a steep flight of steps was sufficient.
The Brentwood Bus and Rail Users’ Association has been campaigning for the help point to be reinstated
on the Shenfield-bound platform for several months and had received a blank refusal until it wrote earlier this autumn to TfL Commissioner Mike Brown.
Now TfL is to install a temporary help point close to the barriers on platform four in the next few days,
and has committed to providing a permanent one within the next three months. The temporary point will remain in place until then.
BBARUA Vice-Chair Cllr David Jobbins said: “This is great news for all rail travellers using Brentwood station but especially for those with mobility issues,
or unable to tackle a flight of steps to the help point on the footbridge.
“Other platforms had a help point and it is unfortunate that platform four, which lacks a passenger lift to the footbridge and ticket office, was without one.
Now users will be able to obtain information about services and summon assistance if they feel threatened or vulnerable. In particular,
travellers with disabilities will be able to obtain help without having to make a lengthy trek to the booking hall via Station Parade and Kings Road.
“We know that the platform barrier is often not staffed in the evenings after the ticket office closes and TfL personnel cannot be everywhere on the station.
But it is at night that travellers are rightly concerned that they may encounter issues, while people with disabilities are completely
cut off from any way of seeking help because of the stairs.
“Welcome though this news from TfL is, the BBARUA will continue to campaign with Brentwood Access Group and others for a lift on
platform four so that all passengers can reach the ticket office and other platforms without undue difficulty.”
Currently 97 stations are scheduled for projects to improve access and the Department for Transport said in April that these would be completed by March 2024. Brentwood was not on the list, despite originally being due to have a lift on platform four when lifts were installed on the other two platforms some years ago.
In July the government announced a £20 million fund to improve stations for people with disabilities but it covers minor works and not projects such as the lift installation at Brentwood, which has proved more costly than anticipated.