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Forest Hill Station

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Joined 04-03-2005
Posted on Thursday, 17 March, 2005 - 11:54 am:   

I'm not sure who reads this forum. But many threads contain comments on Forest Hill station, so maybe a thread should be started. With all the parents in Forest Hill maybe Southern should think about making Forest Hill station more accessible for pushchairs? A ramp off of platform 2 shouldn't be that difficult. Or is Southern/the Council/London transport?? waiting for the East London line to come to make any improvements?
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Thursday, 17 March, 2005 - 12:59 pm:   

Why don't they issue the Metro newspaper at Forest Hill?
Joined 05-03-2004
Posted on Thursday, 17 March, 2005 - 01:44 pm:   

Elizabeth I never really thought about it to be honest, but your right how do parents access the station they have to carry a heavy buggy up lots of steps, also how do people in wheel chairs access the station! it seems that they just expect people to struggle. a ramp is a good idea perhaps the councillor will read your thread
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Friday, 18 March, 2005 - 01:19 pm:   

I often walk to Catford Bridge to catch the train into central London, and they have very recently started providing Metro newspaper. Perhaps Forest Hill will be next?
Joined 28-01-2004
Posted on Friday, 18 March, 2005 - 09:07 pm:   


I agree totally with you. The platform 2 access is dingy, dark at night, and not wheelchair/pushchair accessible. It is something our councillors should be lobbying for from Southern.

p.s. Honor Oak Park is equally bad and there is scope to do something about it at reasonable cost, with ramps down the cutting sides.

Joined 28-01-2004
Posted on Friday, 18 March, 2005 - 09:09 pm:   

Our new Lib Dem councillor, by the way!
Joined 08-01-2003
Posted on Saturday, 19 March, 2005 - 03:08 pm:   

I have made contact with the distribution manager at Metro, and look forward to hearing back from him.

I'll let you know the outcome guys.

Joined 19-03-2005
Posted on Wednesday, 23 March, 2005 - 03:20 pm:   

As far as I know, Southern only have responsiblity for 'minor works' and then only to a figure set out in their franchise agreement (ah, the joy of the privatised railway). It's up to Network Rail to get bigger jobs (including converting stations to step-free) done when the Government gives them money to do so.

The Government and SRA proposed an 'Access for All' fund yesterday. The consultation documents are in the publications section the SRA's website for everyone to read.

The programme is proposed to run from 2006/7 - 2014/15 and they have Forest Hill station in Band 2, which would mean it being upgraded around 2010/12. I'm not sure how this will fit with the Council's pretty blueprints for a new station and regenerated FH town centre (perhaps the SRA think it's not going to happen!) but I will be trying to find out.

Upgrading of Honor Oak Park is looking even longer away: it appears not to be on their list at all - although according to their appendix they've done a feasability study there. Brockley and Sydenham are in Band 3 for upgrading 2013/14 ish.

(I should declare an interest: my dad is disabled and can only come and visit in the car - a long, tiring drive from Teesside - at the moment with the lack of accessible stations round about).

I'd urge everyone concerned about station access to respond to the SRA consultation - they won't know how we feel unless we tell them!

Cllr Philip Peake (Forest Hill, Lib Dem)
Joined 24-03-2004
Posted on Wednesday, 23 March, 2005 - 04:37 pm:   

On the subject of pretty blueprints for the town centre...any news?
Joined 23-01-2003
Posted on Wednesday, 23 March, 2005 - 04:46 pm:   

Dear Philip

Thanks for that very informative post.

Coincidentally, I wrote a long letter to Southern this week on behalf of SE23 complaining about the poor state of Forest Hill station.

While I wholeheartedly agree with you about the need for better access to the station, I also believe that Southern could make some significant interim improvements.

The bridge, as many people on this site have stated, is an eyesore. The wire cage and grey paintwork could be quickly and cheaply improved. When compared with station bridges such as Crystal Palace, which is brightly painted and has a less oppressive roof, it illustrates what could and should be done to improve visitor's first impression of the area. This is even more imperative given that the station bridge is the main method for crossing east and west SE23.

I have also written to the Connexions East manager for Forest Hill, who has promised she will try to improve the immediate area facing the station.

While I would be delighted to respond to the SRA consultation, I also urge people on this site to lobby the relevant groups to make small but significant steps towards improving SE23. First impressions count, and as it stands, Forest Hill station gives a very bad impression of a good place to live.

Joined 04-03-2005
Posted on Thursday, 24 March, 2005 - 07:32 am:   

Thanks for all the responses! I will respond to the SRA consultant.
Joined 19-05-2004
Posted on Tuesday, 29 March, 2005 - 12:35 pm:   

Any views on why we have the wire mesh across the bridge - did we suffer more from most other parts of London that don't have these protective measures? Is Forest Hill like the Northern Line, ie a disproportionately high rate of people throwing themselves off the footbridge
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Tuesday, 29 March, 2005 - 02:14 pm:   

It would be a nice addition at the station if they installed some Oyster card machines. Currently I lose my 4 local discount every month, plus have to pay 2.20 for a single fare into London Bridge, the nearest point I can purchase the renewal. 6.20 pcm, almost 80 a year worse off.I know better self organisation would mean that I could avoid this happening, however, its inexplicably so much against the consumer. Its ridiculous- I can't renew my travel card in town as they don't do them any more, and I can't renew my oyster in Forest Hill. I renewed it over the web once but when checked at Forest Hill it didn't work and I had to buy a ticket! Apparently it can only recharge at a station card reader. Any news, views..
Joined 23-01-2003
Posted on Tuesday, 29 March, 2005 - 05:36 pm:   

Baggydave - as part of my complaint letter to Southern last week, I urged them to improve the bridge's appearance, including the wire mesh which is ugly and oppressive. I believe that this and other elements of the station's poor appearance are a key issue for Forest Hill. The station is the hub of the town, and is the first place visitors and potential investors see.

Improving the bridge is a cost effective and key mechanism for making a visible difference to the area. Councillors - please take note and lobby Southern on our behalf. I would suggest that we draw attention to neighbouring stations, none of which have the wire mesh and attractive grey paintwork.
Joined 05-04-2003
Posted on Wednesday, 30 March, 2005 - 06:35 pm:   

I totally agree with both Roz and Rob on both counts. I also would love to have a pre-pay Oyster card as I do not use the train every day, but do communte via other means. But I am restricted, we desperately need an Oyster card reader. As for the station it is a tip, the rubbish that has been thrown from the bridge, the ugly bridge and the lack of access to anyone who is not able bodied and agile.
Joined 23-01-2003
Posted on Thursday, 31 March, 2005 - 10:37 am:   

Here's my response from Southern. I have asked that they paint the station a better colour the battleship grey. I will also send this response to Network Rail. While I accept that missiling is an issue, I do not accept that wire cages are the answer.

Dear Rob,

Thank you for your web comment about Forest Hill station.

Your words are not lost upon us and you are correct to acknowledge the budgetary implications of your proposals. However, where significant structural alterations are needed, responsibility falls to our landlord, Network Rail, and this includes access improvements and attention to the bridge. On the subject of the latter, while we take your point about other nearby stations, the usual reason for caging is to prevent missiles being thrown at passing trains. This is a serious problem which is actually on the increase and so, rather than removal of these cages, we are likely to see more of them erected.

Having said all that, however, although Forest Hill is not likely to attract funding for structural improvements in the immediate future, it is in line for some re-painting shortly; the programme is for the work to be done during June and that at least should make the station look a lot smarter.

I hope that this is helpful but if I can be of any further assistance, please do not hesitate to write to me using the link below.


Richard Lancaster
Southern Customer Services
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Thursday, 31 March, 2005 - 02:22 pm:   

Rather than hope for a lovely magical kingdom victoriana station, I think there is far more hope in getting the private land around the station developed. Does anyone know who owns the boarded up ex-hand job car wash now spontanwous skip plot on the perry vale side. This more than anything would improve the area. Oh yeah, and the burnt out kebab shop. Oh yeah, and the rather dingy / inconvenient crossings, etc etc.

The access problem is the prime lever there as the council may take it up as an important issue.

Any pictures of the old station in all its glory?
Joined 04-03-2005
Posted on Thursday, 31 March, 2005 - 03:23 pm:   

I see the station now has some brand new signs. Tiny plaster on big, open wound?
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Thursday, 31 March, 2005 - 07:10 pm:   

You have to go back to 1905 to see a decent picture of Forest Hill station, and what a nice station it looked too. See link below: /forest-hill-station.htm
Joined 19-05-2004
Posted on Thursday, 31 March, 2005 - 07:13 pm:   

Is that a decent pub next door? I bet there was a cinema as well if they had started building them by then.

I'll get my coat

(PS totally agree with you)

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