|Posted on Wednesday, 31 May, 2006 - 04:33 pm: |
I have received this reply from the East London Line:
"Thank you for your email dated the 31st May 2006, which was received in this office today.
We can confirm that no major works will be taking place at Forest Hill and there will be no closure of the station. There is likely to be some rebranding, repainting and general improvements to the look of the station. The whole line will close down for about three separate weekends during 2008 for the construction of a rail flyover at New Cross Gate.
Further information about road closures, routes and works can be found on our website www.ellp.co.uk
This does not look good.
I think we need to get organised to lobby for a major redevelopment of our railway station (and possibly the town centre).
|Posted on Wednesday, 31 May, 2006 - 05:02 pm: |
Agreed with that. I think this should be a major point to be raised at FSH meetings. The rail station regeneration is essential to the towns vitality. I would say Forest Hill station is particulalry ugly and out-dated.
|Posted on Wednesday, 31 May, 2006 - 08:48 pm: |
Well, let's face it, it's basically a Portacabin. It's bizarre how you would spend several hundred million on a project and not bother with £500k-£1m to redo one of the most visible aspects. How to spoil a ship for a ha'porth of tar!
We missed out on the last spurt of redevelopment that saw the likes of Woolwich and Charlton rebuilt. Now it looks like we will continue to get a bumdeal, paying the same as everyone else in London for something nowhere near up to the same standards, not only in fares but in subsidy through taxation. It's a disgrace when you compare Honor Oak Park or FH stations to Surrey Quays. Why do we put up with this? We have the right to be treated the same as other parts of London. We need to start claiming this right.
|Posted on Wednesday, 31 May, 2006 - 11:12 pm: |
Didn't a government minister open the 'portacabin' in the 1980's or 90's?
The South London Press reports Forest Hiil trains are to have extra carriages in the rush hour from June 12th.
|Posted on Wednesday, 31 May, 2006 - 11:32 pm: |
Yes, it was the Rt Hon Sir Frank Bruno.
|Posted on Thursday, 01 June, 2006 - 09:20 am: |
George Young who is often mistaken for Sir Frank, did attend Forest Hill station in an official capacity, not sure why! Apparently he was a transport secretary in John Mayor's era.
|Posted on Thursday, 01 June, 2006 - 10:36 am: |
I think the technology exists now to build over the railway lines. Tesco are doing this at Gerrards Cross to build a new supermarket. (But the new building did collapse!)
Anyway if a structure is built over the whole area the possibilities are enormous.
|Posted on Thursday, 01 June, 2006 - 11:40 am: |
Sir Frank I do believe opened the company that used to be housed next to the cab office in said portacabin. Boy he must have been desperate for cash. Alas, the memorial plaque has now disappeared. Forest Hill's heritage has lost another unique morsel.
|Posted on Thursday, 01 June, 2006 - 04:30 pm: |
Agreed with Hilltopgeneral, FH and Hon Oak stations seem to have been overlooked in every way and shape. There must be a specific reason why we have so blatantly been ignored when, like you say, most stations around London have benefitted from new designs/ huge lumps of cash. Surely we must be on the list before the Olympics, and as discussed on another thread, the implementation of the Oyster barriers in 2008. But why should we have to wait that long?
|Posted on Thursday, 01 June, 2006 - 04:40 pm: |
I was told that Frank Bruno was friend of the owner of Fare Cars, the minicab company that had its office in the station building.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 08:51 am: |
The Lewisham council website says they are investing £25 million in Deptford station http://www.lewisham.gov.uk/NewsAndEvents/HotTopics /PlanningBriefings.htm
I am sure this is necessary in Deptford, but it is a shame that when the East London Line is fast approaching Forest Hill there are no plans to do more than give the station a lick of paint.
With more trains coming through Forest Hill and Oyster readers needed on all entrances and exits I do not think Forest Hill will be able to cope with the flow of people through it, particularly the exit from platform 2, which is already congested, dirty and too steep for safety in these situations.
Time is running out for Lewisham and Transport for London to work out what needs to be done for Forest Hill station, which will be one of the most important transport hubs for zone 3 in South London.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 09:44 am: |
It already is. I believe it is the next busiest station after Lewisham. This probably won't surprise anyone who travels back in the evening and sees most of the train disembark at Forest Hill.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 10:51 am: |
Forest Hill Station is Clasp build, according to the raiilway authorities life expectancy 30 - 35 years. During discussions 10 years ago they said that the station was due a rebuild. 10 years ago passengers through that station numbered 70,000 per week.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 11:32 am: |
I think I will write to Jim Dowd, MP. He was very keen to get the East London Line exteded to Forest Hill. It seems a shame not to redevelop the railway station and the immediate environment at the same time.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 01:29 pm: |
I also read somewhere that Forest Hill was the 2nd largest rail station (after Lewisham) even now, so with East London line plans in place the council should have FH at the top of their list! We definately need some feedback from 'those in charge' and ask why the over-congested, badly-designed, antiquated, 2nd most-used train station in South East London is forever over-looked!
This should have full backing of FH Society.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 02:07 pm: |
Network Rail's route plan for our station is @
Interesting reading - no word of major changes to Forest Hill this side of 2009. Does refer to ELLX and that the lack of platforms on the fast lines is one constraint on capacity.
The is a Route Utilisation Strategy study starting now...
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 04:19 pm: |
The Network Rail document refers to a new 'flyover' at New Cross Gate. Does anyone know what that means?
I've been wondering if the ELLX will affect the frequency of other services that go through New Cross Gate. I assume that northbound ELLX services will need to cross over the other 3 railway lines at New Cross Gate to get onto the ELL track towards Surrey Quays. When there are 8 trains an hour going through, would this will create a bottleneck?
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 04:29 pm: |
I should probably declare an interest here and say that as a 'member' (I use the term lightly as we've only had one meeting) of the Forest Hill Society I did volunteer to be on the interim Transport Committee of the FHS. There are only two of us so far, so if anyone would like to join in ...
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 04:35 pm: |
A colleague told me that the flyover refers to raising the road over the railway lines to allow a bit more romm for the trains passing underneath.
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 04:55 pm: |
I am not sure that he is right. I found this on a website.
"The New Cross Gate Link would extend from New Cross Gate station to Railtrack's Croydon lines, giving access to destinations such as West Croydon via Forest Hill. In the London-bound direction a flyover would be built at New Cross Gate to take this link over the Railtrack lines."
|Posted on Friday, 02 June, 2006 - 05:13 pm: |
I can't a fresh bridge being built in such a small place, it really is packed with traffic down by New Cross Gate and the shops/ pubs are very close to the railway. More likely the bridge and platforms will be raised/ extended as you said previously.
|Posted on Saturday, 03 June, 2006 - 12:04 pm: |
Extra info @ http://www.alwaystouchout.com/project/3
Conflicting crossing trains at New Cross has been a problem for Network Rail for ages. The Up Slow, Up Fast, Down Fast, Down Slow layout through Forest Hill is unusual and means there is a lot of crossing on the approaches to London Bridge.
East London Line will increase these conflicts. I am assuming the flyover will be a single track bridge taking the Northbound trains over the main lines and onto the ELL.
In fact, two flyovers have been planned - one for ELLX and one for Thameslink 2000. Google the latter for details.
There is a really hideous one in Wimbledon -
http://www.ukrailpics.com/railpics/2004/November%2 023rd%20-%20Refurbished%20455%20Launch/photos/phot o_64.html
But is more likely to be like:
http://www.croydon-tramlink.co.uk/php/gallpic.php? Cat=Wandle+Park&Desc=Cab+View+-+Wandle+Flyover+wit h+Croydon+Skyline+ahead&fn=/pictures/gallery/wimbl edon/WandlePark/CVWandleFlyoverwithCroydonSkylinea head.jpg&By=S.J.Parascandolo&Date=07/06/2000&ID=27 7
Phew! Les. (p.s. I am not a train spotter!)
|Posted on Saturday, 03 June, 2006 - 02:46 pm: |
Thanks for the interesting links Les.
There is quite a lot of land north of NCG station: unused sidings to the west and a large V-shape of land to the east (which used to be full of vehicles, presumably waiting to be reclaimed or to go the crusher). The ELLX trains will be 4 carriages, so I assume there's enough space for the trains to veer off to the left and up onto a flyover to join the northbound ELL track. I wonder if the flyover (angle of curves, load-bearing capacity etc) will restrict the number of carriages they can put on each train.
Why can't they just tell us these things?! There's far more information on the alwaystouchout site than there is on the official ELL pages.
|Posted on Saturday, 03 June, 2006 - 10:27 pm: |
It's VERY unusual to design a new bridge with anything other than full capacity - there are enough old ones with restrictions. It causes operational headaches for heavier engineering trains etc.
Train lengths are more likely to be dictated by the platform lengths on the ELL. I remember the ones on each side of the Brunel's (Isambards dad) Thames tunnel are particularly difficult to lengthen.
|Posted on Sunday, 04 June, 2006 - 02:42 pm: |
I was told quite some time ago that an engine shed was to be built near New Cross Gate Station.
Apparantly somewhere near this point, a small flyover was planned so ELL trains could connect to the Network Rail lines. This was due to the fact that ELL trains leaving Surrey Quays split onto two lines (for New Cross or New Cross Gate) and that the final sections of these lines are single track. The new flyover will connect to existing Network Rail tracks to effectively provide a permanant up and down link at New Cross Gate. This would be somewhere between New Cross Gate and Surrey Quays.
I remember also reading some planning applications documents on line that seemed to support this (can't remember whether it was Southwark council website or a link at TFL.) These documents talked about longish term road closures and traffic redirections that would need to take place while the works are being carried out.
|Posted on Monday, 05 June, 2006 - 10:40 am: |
Instead of locals moaning about the state of the station in FH and how it should be upgraded in line of stations in less needy areas I would have thought a more powerful argument to spin to TFL is that upgrading the station on both sides of the track is neccessary to prevent fare dodgers on the line. Increased fare revenues are likely to be far more appealing to 'Red Ken' and his cronies than the aesthetics of a transport link.
|Posted on Monday, 05 June, 2006 - 11:03 am: |
Good point. I am sure that it is easy to travel on some parts of the line without buying a ticket. They only check your ticket at the London terminus and New Cross Gate (I think).
|Posted on Monday, 05 June, 2006 - 11:37 am: |
I've found a Statutory Instrument (dated 2001) relating to the ELLX. Schedule 1 is the most interesting as it's the list of works:
Unfortunately there isn't a map, just descriptions such as 'build X 35 metres north east of Y". I'll post a summary once I've had a chance to read it whilst poring over a local map.
|Posted on Thursday, 08 June, 2006 - 11:17 am: |
In terms of improvements to Forest Hill Station I have been working hard with the Sydenham Society to secure improvements to the station and am pressing the various stakeholders – Lewisham Council, Network Rail, Southern, Transport for London and the East London Line team – to get together to discuss how to take plans for new stations forward. I would be happy to also work with the Forest Hill Society to progress this. My contact details are GLA, City Hall, The Queen’s Walk, London SE1 2AA, email@example.com or 020 7983 4408.
I have also been pressurising Southern to run longer trains on this line for some time. I know that it is often difficult to board a train in the rush hour, especially at Brockley Station. What makes it even more frustrating is that often the rush hour trains are only formed of six or even four coaches.
Southern have now informed me that from 12 June 2006, rush hour trains running on this line, will benefit from extra carriages.
Services to benefit from 12 June 2006 include:
To London Bridge
· 2 extra coaches 0728 from West Croydon via Sydenham calling at Norwood Jnc (0732), Anerley (0735), Penge West (0737), Sydenham (0740), Forest Hill (0742), Honor Oak Park (0745), Brockley (0747), New Cross Gate (0750) and London Bridge
· 2 extra coaches 0745 from Streatham Hill via Sydenham arrives 0816 calling at West Norwood (0748), Gipsy Hill (0751), Crystal Palace (0754), Sydenham (0757), Forest Hill (0759), Honor Oak Park (0802), Brockley (0804). New Cross Gate (0807) and London Bridge
· 2 extra coaches 0800 from Epsom Downs via Sydenham arrives 0846
· 2 extra coaches 0859 from West Croydon via Sydenham arrives 0929 calling at Norwood Junction (0903), Anerley (0906), Penge West (0908), Sydenham (0911), Forest Hill (0913), Honor Oak Park (0916), Brockley (0918), New Cross Gate (0921) and London Bridge
From London Bridge
· 2 extra coaches 1655 To Victoria via Crystal Palace calling at New Cross Gate, Brockley, Honor Oak Park, Forest Hill, Sydenham, Crystal Palace, Gipsy Hill, West Norwood, Streatham Hill, Balham, Wandsworth Common, Clapham Junction, Battersea Park and London Victoria
· 2 extra coaches 1622 To London Bridge via Crystal Palace calling at Battersea Park, Clapham Junction, Wandsworth Common, Balham, Streatham Hill, West Norwood, Gipsy Hill, Crystal Palace, Sydenham, Forest Hill, Honor Oak Park, Brockley, New Cross Gate and London Bridge
· 2 extra coaches 1719 To London Bridge via Crystal Palace calling at Battersea Park, Clapham Junction, Wandsworth Common, Balham, Streatham Hill, West Norwood, Gipsy Hill, Crystal Palace, Sydenham, Forest Hill, Honor Oak Park, Brockley, New Cross Gate and London Bridge
This 07.51am service from Victoria to London Bridge, (arriving at Sydenham at 8.18, Forest Hill 8.21, Honor Oak Park 8.23 and Brockley at 8.26) was lengthened from 6 to 8 carriages last December.
London Assembly Member for Greenwich & Lewisham
|Posted on Friday, 09 June, 2006 - 09:07 am: |
Excellent work. I know criticism is much easier than compliments, but the service is much better than it was 3 or 4 years ago. I wrote to the operator 2 years ago for more Victoria trains in the evening and more than twice an hour on a Sunday. Hey presto, the next time table included both! Maybe public pressure can work after all.
Good luck in replacing our shameful station.
|Posted on Friday, 09 June, 2006 - 11:13 am: |
Thank you for your achievement. It is always irritating to have to squeeze into a short train.
Perhaps you could help re-elect Labour councillors for Forest Hill with a campaign to build a new railway station. I am sure that a new railway station is needed to comply with the Mayor's policy of improving security at the station and to ensure that passengers pay the correct fare.
Travelling back from Charing Cross on Wednesday night the passengers in my carriage were harangued by a man who claimed to have no money. How did he get on the train if he had no money?
|Posted on Tuesday, 13 June, 2006 - 06:24 pm: |
He would of got on at Waterloo East where there are no barriers.
|Posted on Tuesday, 13 June, 2006 - 08:38 pm: |
Is "he" a "friend" of yours Martin?
|Posted on Tuesday, 13 June, 2006 - 09:56 pm: |
Three years ago I participated in a public consultation exercise on the regeneration of Forest Hill station. This was run at considerable expense to the public purse. It all looked very positive at the time. Subsequent to this I also participated in a consultation exercise on public art in Forest Hill, with Michael Pinsky as the artist- this was to link in with the station regeneration and was also linked to the Creative Lewisham project. I have no idea what happened to these great plans. Perhaps some of the new Councillors could enlighten me?
|Posted on Tuesday, 13 June, 2006 - 10:58 pm: |
Perhaps some of your chums the old ones could.
|Posted on Tuesday, 13 June, 2006 - 11:48 pm: |
It would be good to hear ANYTHING from the new councillors. Have we heard this somewhere before?
Vociferous campaign based on the fact that everything is dreadful, followed by total inability to come up with any solutions.
|Posted on Wednesday, 14 June, 2006 - 09:17 am: |
I think that Creative Lewisham was a project inspired by the former Mayor, Dave Sullivan.
Possibly it expired when he was not chosen as the Labour Party's candidate for Mayor.
I think you can communicate with the new councillors. I believe that they are only just settling into their new roles. So give them a little time.
|Posted on Wednesday, 14 June, 2006 - 12:14 pm: |
There may be issues that they need to research in more detail. But even on the ones they pronounced on with great confidence during the election there is a deafening silence.
Yes I can communicate with them, but previously it was not a case of having to prise their pronouncements out of them. We were knee-deep in election communications from them.
|Posted on Wednesday, 14 June, 2006 - 12:16 pm: |
At Labour Party meetings?
|Posted on Wednesday, 14 June, 2006 - 01:32 pm: |
Maybe you would know that, but I have no information.
|Posted on Wednesday, 14 June, 2006 - 02:58 pm: |
Fair enough Melissa but I think most of us accept that an election campaign is just that - a campaign to get elected. It is by its very nature a very public process. If we had that level of canvassing and posturing all the time then when would they have time to do the jobs they have been elcted to do? If you want an answer from a councillor why don't you contact him/her direct rather than posting on a message board they may only read once in a blue moon.
|Posted on Wednesday, 14 June, 2006 - 05:18 pm: |
I intend to do that. My point is that there have been as far as I can tell no public statements in any form (leaflets, press, this website etc) as to what they actually plan to do.
And considering the number of posts and visits on this site, anyone who has any interest in the area ought to be keeping in touch with it more often than once in a blue moon.
|Posted on Thursday, 15 June, 2006 - 07:56 am: |
Sorry, Hilltopgeneral- 'some of your old chums'- perhaps you could explain?
|Posted on Thursday, 15 June, 2006 - 09:53 am: |
I thought it was you who seemed a bit unhappy about the election of the new councillors and quite a supporter of the old ones?
It seemed to me that this was something that was being talked about a while ago and which the old councillors would know more about. Certainly it wouldn't be fair to bring it up as a point on which to criticise the new ones - not yet, at least.
|Posted on Thursday, 15 June, 2006 - 01:52 pm: |
I don't believe I was bringing this up as a criticism of anyone- I was simply asking the question. I would have thought this was something the new councillors of any persuasion could answer, seeing as how they are paid to be there and former Councillors are not.
|Posted on Thursday, 15 June, 2006 - 03:42 pm: |
There are a number of questions from councillors relating to Forest Hill at this link...
|Posted on Wednesday, 12 July, 2006 - 05:54 pm: |
I have just received a letter from Jim Dowd, MP. He has referred my concerns that there are no plans to improve Forest Hill Railway Station to Ken Livingstone, Mayor of London.
I will let you know what reply we get from Ken.
|Posted on Wednesday, 12 July, 2006 - 09:08 pm: |
Has anyone noticed the work happening on the far side of the station? It looks like the Southbound platform is being extended (wider) and new stairs are being put in (going down towards the bridge). Is that right? Is this part of the plan or just some cosmetic fix?
|Posted on Thursday, 13 July, 2006 - 08:45 am: |
I don't think they are doing anything like that. I suspect that the wall was collapsing. No mention of any plans of the nature you describe was made when Forest Hill and Sydenham Society representatives met with Southern and Network Rail a few weeks ago.
If they were trying to improve access to the southbound platform the obvious place to do this is at the other end, going out via the Perry Vale car park.
|Posted on Thursday, 27 July, 2006 - 03:46 pm: |
I have also written to the Mayor of London urging him to use the opportunity of the East London Line to improve stations along the route. With such an investment going into the transport infrastructure it is important not to miss the opportunity to provide wider benefits. It is also important that these stations can cope with the extra passenger growth. I am also pressing for distinctive branding/signage at the stations.
I am asking the Mayor to look at the stations as a whole (along the line) and consider all sources of funding to come up with a package of measure to improve the stations. I will keep you informed.
In the meantime, the next meeting with the key stakeholders (organised by Lewisham council) is still in the process of being set up.
Assembly Member for Greenwich and Lewisham
|Posted on Thursday, 27 July, 2006 - 04:19 pm: |
Thank you for your support.
|Posted on Friday, 28 July, 2006 - 01:01 am: |
The following public question was asked of the Mayor at Wednesday's full council meeting.
Question asked by: Mr J Russell
Can the Mayor detail any meetings or contacts that have taken place with Network Rail regarding Forest Hill Station. What are the Council's objectives for the future development of the station site and surrounding land. Are there any plans to improve the lighting and safety for pedestrians using the underpass between Perry Vale and Forest Hill.
Forest Hill station is owned by Network Rail and services are operated through the station by Southern railway . By 2010 the East London Line will be extended from New Cross Gate to Crystal Palace and West Croydon, which will serve the station. The council holds quarterly meetings with the train and bus operators to which all Councillors are invited and have an input into the agenda. If there are operational issues concerning Forest Hill then these can be raised at the meeting .
The Council's aspirations for the future of the station and its site are for a landmark mixed use building fronted by a high quality public space. They are set out in the Forest Hill Urban Design Framework and Development Strategy, adopted by the Council as Supplementary Planning Guidance in 2003.
Implementation will need to be in the form of a commercial development led by Network Rail, who have yet to take the project forward. Although the underpass is owned by Network Rail, the lighting in this area was recently checked and lights replaced and graffiti cleaned from the lighting where necessary.
|Posted on Friday, 28 July, 2006 - 10:14 am: |
Should also bear in mind that Berkely Homes (planning application at Finches site) have stated that if PP is granted they will contribute to sorting out underpass (likely to form part of the s.106 agreement and therefore will probably be about 2 years after the development at the Finches site is finished...
|Posted on Friday, 04 August, 2006 - 11:27 pm: |
According to an article in today's South London Press Network Rail say they don't have the money to refurbish Forest Hill station and suggest the Mayor of London may wish to take on the work as part of the East London Line extension plans.
|Posted on Wednesday, 09 August, 2006 - 09:17 pm: |
I have just received a reply from Kevin Austin, the Head of Transport at the Greater London Athority (ref: MGLA180706-9699) (email: Kevin.Austin@London.gov.uk).
He says "The £500 million Main Works contract and £300 million Rolling Stock contract (circa) will be announced very shortly.
Transport for London is responsible for delivering services for the existing East London Line track and stations and shares your concerns about stations at the southern end of the extension beyond New Cross Gate. The Mayor would also like these stations enhanced, however, at the current time, these stations remain the responsibility of Network Rail and the existing train operator, Southern. Therefore, we have no jurisdiction over these organisations with respect to making improvements at these locations."
|Posted on Wednesday, 09 August, 2006 - 09:56 pm: |
I shall be interested to ask him how he intends to "bring assets into use" (LU speak) that do not meet LU Station Planning Standards & Guidelines... I can see a bit of a bunfight as TfL refuse to accept buildings and platforms in such a bad state! East London Line 2010 my ****!
|Posted on Wednesday, 09 August, 2006 - 10:17 pm: |
The postal address is
The Queen's Walk
|Posted on Thursday, 10 August, 2006 - 10:32 am: |
This is the link for the South London Press:
http://icsouthlondon.icnetwork.co.uk/0100news/0500 lewisham/tm_objectid=17534124%26method=full%26site id=50100%26headline=station%2dwill%2dnot%2dget%2dr evamped-name_page.html#story_continue
|Posted on Wednesday, 16 August, 2006 - 04:54 pm: |
As promised, I have now heard back from the Mayor of London about improving the stations along the East London Line.
I had urged him to invest in a feasibility study of the stations and to come up with a package of reasonable measures to improve the stations along this line. So, I am pleased that Transport for London are currently undertaking feasibility work to investigate further improvements at the stations along the East London Line route. Elements of this have been included within the specification for the operation of the line and the Mayor is hopeful that they will be able to come up with a more comprehensive plan that goes considerably beyond just ‘changing the signs’.
TfL are also in negotiations with the Department for Transport regarding taking full responsibility for stations served by the extended East London Line between New Cross Gate and Crystal Palace/West Croydon. However, in the meantime I will continue to keep the pressure on both Network Rail and existing train operators to fulfil their existing obligations. The Mayor of London has also already made clear that he expects to see proper level of staffing at these stations.
I am pleased that the Mayor agrees with me that the branding and signage is also important, so that this new service is recognised as being a new and different service. The Mayor has instructed TfL to formalise a branding strategy to be launched in the autumn. He has also already made it clear that each of these new lines will be fully represented on the ‘Tube map’ and will be identified using the roundel. Services, fares and control of appropriate infrastructure/rolling stock will all be under the direct control of TfL.
Finally, the main works contract and rolling stock contracts remain on schedule to be awarded, as planned, towards the end of summer.
Len Duvall AM
London Assembly Member for Greenwich & Lewisham
|Posted on Wednesday, 16 August, 2006 - 08:53 pm: |
Thanks, Len for the update.
Does the reference to fares extend to enabling us to buy Oyster cards at Forest Hill? It is really unacceptable that you cannot do so at present as these are now the most commonly used form of ticket.
If I come back from holiday, as I have just done a few weeks ago, to an expired Oyster travelcard, I have to buy a single to London Bridge and then buy the card there. It all costs. I could have done it online , apparently, however this has to be done 48 hours beforehand.
Hopefully these absurd little quirks will be ironed out well before the East London line gets here...
|Posted on Thursday, 17 August, 2006 - 09:22 am: |
Thanks very much for the update Len - sterling work.
Collectively we must keep pushing the point. After decades of underinvestment our end of the line will continue to look really shoddy and second rate compared to the brand new stations at the northern end. (Tens of?) millions have also been been found for existing stations like Finsbury Park, for example. Whilst recognising that this is a major interchange and not suggesting that such works are necessarily appropriate at Forest Hill, it puts it into perspective when all the tube stations are being quite thoroughly refurbished and our station isn't even up to the standard of the dilapidated ones where TfL / LU thinks a refurbishment is due! We are absolutely entitled to have a station of the minimum standard found elsewhere on the tube network - we pay the same so should receive the same! Surely Ken will support our appeal for a fair deal for South London?
|Posted on Thursday, 17 August, 2006 - 07:23 pm: |
Thank you for your support.
|Posted on Friday, 18 August, 2006 - 11:10 pm: |
With all those extra trains coming into Forest Hill how are they planning to collect the extra revenue if they do not redevelop the railway station and include barriers to control fare-dodgers?
|Posted on Saturday, 19 August, 2006 - 07:54 am: |
Good question! I can't even recall the last time I saw a ticket inspector at Forest Hill.
I can't personally see the need for ticket staff and machines if they are not planning to sell Oyster cards, as this is surely what the majority of people are buying these days.
Actually, I am not sure about 'extra trains'. The last I heard was that they were planning 6 trains an hour, and as a result the mainline services were likely to be cut back to accommodate these. Does anyone know what the proposed service is going to be like.?
|Posted on Saturday, 19 August, 2006 - 08:30 am: |
Apparently by 2010 there will be 4 main line trains plus 8 ELL trains an hour. The thread 'East London Line' contains more information.
|Posted on Wednesday, 23 August, 2006 - 10:57 am: |
Basically, Transport for London plan to bring the stations up to tube standards (increased personal security and staffing). This will include ticketing - so you will be able to use oyster at this station. As for gatelines, the plan is to have gatelines - where space is available.
I share your frustration that most overland train stations are not part of the Oyster Pre-Pay network and have worked hard to see it rolled out. The problem has been that TfL do not control most overground rail and train stations.
I have lobbied the Mayor of London, TfL, Southern, South Eastern Trains and the Department for Transport. I have been urging them to work together to get oyster rolled out as soon as possible.
So, I am pleased that the Mayor has now reached a deal with the train operating companies which will see Oyster Pre-Pay rolled out across the overground rail network in London. TfL has agreed to pay for the installation of Oyster validation equipment to be provided at all London rail stations in zones 1-6. Work on this could begin as early as this year for gated stations and could be completed by 2008.
Len Duvall AM
London Assembly Member for Greenwich & Lewisham
|Posted on Tuesday, 26 September, 2006 - 09:23 pm: |
Has anybody noticed the demolition of a small piece of wall that was at the bottom of the stairs from the southbound exit from the station?
I suggested this was removed a few months ago when Forest Hill and Sydenham Societies met with representatives from Southern Railways at the station. The removal of this wall should stop rubbish collecting there and possibly discourage men from using it as a public convenience.
A small step forward, but a step forward nonetheless.
|Posted on Tuesday, 26 September, 2006 - 10:00 pm: |
The station was chaotic this morning. The ticket machine was not working and the queue for one booth in the ticket office was right out of the door.
Why do I bother to pay?
|Posted on Wednesday, 27 September, 2006 - 01:04 pm: |
The station is a joke, the queue out the door is a regular occurrence, even on the evenings the queue is six or seven deep for one window (I try and renew my ticket the night before it expires).
The problem is that there is no incentive for anyone to do anything to the station. Whilst TfL will gain control of the station in 2010 when they control most of the trains serving the station, knowing how these things work, there will be no upgrade of the facilities for a couple of years.....so it looks like what we have is what will stay, yes I know that there will be better signage and upgrades to underground standard, but at the end of the day, the number of users (on most trains about half of the people onboard get off) deserves a much better station.
|Posted on Thursday, 28 September, 2006 - 09:03 am: |
Well there is an incentive. If they want to gain extra revenues from clamping down on fare-dodgers then they need to upgrade. Otherwise it's going to be easy to travel for free up to New Cross and south as far as the decrepid stations go before croydon as is the case now.
|Posted on Friday, 29 September, 2006 - 04:40 pm: |
Indeed, its a free trip from anywhere south into New Cross Gate. Therefore people only pay from New Cross Gate onwards using Oyster swipe machines (on the platforms). There must be at least 100 people do that and thats just on my train! So we're talking a good thousand people a day not paying & only using Oyster from New Cross.
Thats a lot of lost revenue (£2 per day multiplied by 1000 = £2000 per day?), they would probably make a profit by updgrading Forest Hill station!
|Posted on Friday, 29 September, 2006 - 10:32 pm: |
Would they need to employ any more staff? Or could they just add the ticket barriers?
|Posted on Friday, 29 September, 2006 - 10:51 pm: |
Where could they install the barriers in the first place? Maybe if they knock down the section of the prefab to the left of the entrance to Platform 1.
|Posted on Monday, 02 October, 2006 - 01:32 pm: |
It wouldnt be too difficult. Anyway i read that oyster is making its way out to all stations up to zone 6 by end of next year or likely early 2008.
When Oyster comes, I pressume the barriers will follow.
|Posted on Tuesday, 03 October, 2006 - 01:10 pm: |
May I bring to your attention a letter on page 11 of today's South London Press headed "Station is just fine...".
|Posted on Tuesday, 03 October, 2006 - 01:44 pm: |
Loneranger - do you write for the South London Press or something because you seem to use it as your sole reference for what's going on in the area!!!
|Posted on Tuesday, 03 October, 2006 - 02:55 pm: |
Unfortunately there seems to be less and less coverage of Forest Hill in the Daily Star of late.
|Posted on Wednesday, 04 October, 2006 - 09:18 am: |
Further to my posting on 26 September, I noticed this morning that the guttering has been repair in the underpass which should make the underpass a little better to use, especially in the rain.
This makes two or three issues dealt with since the meeting between Southern Rail and FH and Sydenham Society at the station in June.
Remaining minor issues like we would like to see addressed before the complete rebuild of the station:
* Removal of graffiti on the footbridge
* Wider exit on the southbound platform to avoid congestion
* Better lighting on the steps from the southbound platform (especially as we approach winter)
* Convex mirror at the top of this exit is facing the wrong way to be of any use
* Removal of the gate from the exit (which is never closed and causes an obstruction when opened onto the platform)
* Resurfacing at the bottom of the stairs
* Possible improvements to lighting and CCTV in the underpass
Let's hope we see more improvements soon.
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 09:16 am: |
Michael - someone must be listening to you. They resurfaced the bottom of the stairs on the southbound exit yesterday.
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 03:42 pm: |
Would it be possible to add to the list for the station, the possiblity of ramped access on both sides of the underpass? Also for the south bound exit?
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 04:18 pm: |
This would be nice but will not happen due to space constraints. A ramp needs a lot of space due to the maximum slope that is allowed, so on the London Road side of the subway it would end up coming out half way to Sainsbury.
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 04:44 pm: |
Yes I suppose if you started the ramp at the bottom of the stairs. How about starting further back along the underpass, maybe a zig zagged shallow stepped ramp, or circular affair. I'm no expert, but I'm sure there are Civil Engineers out their who are able to find a solution.
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 06:20 pm: |
You don't need a ramp on the London Road side of the station as it has a level entrance and exit. If you are on the down side of the station you can walk round the pavement under the bridge to the London Road side without encountering any steps.
However, the down side platform would require a ramp (or lift) for passengers in a wheelchair. But I think there is plenty of length to add a ramp alongside the platform. It might block the pavement, though!
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 06:34 pm: |
The new surface for the pavement looks lovely!
The station eventually needs to make access to the southbound platform disabled accessible from the station. This really needs a new bridge with lifts. Hopefully at the same time we could abolish the underpass completely.
But whatever happens it will not be cheap or easy, which is why we have been pushing for the small changes to be made now - and with some success!
|Posted on Thursday, 05 October, 2006 - 08:47 pm: |
I don't think you should abolish the underpass completely, as other people (not railway passengers) use it.
I did realise (after I posted) that an alternative to an external ramp is to build a new bridge with lifts or preferably ramps to connect the two platforms together.
|Posted on Friday, 06 October, 2006 - 09:34 am: |
I am not sure why but ramps are not popular as a means of making stations accessible (I think the issue is that wheelchair users do not find ramps particularly accessible). All improvements to the Underground's overground stations utilise lifts. I think the construction of an over bridge is the better option since one can see the space where this will go.
|Posted on Friday, 06 October, 2006 - 04:11 pm: |
Over bridge's are very dificult to position in reality due to obstructions to sight lines for train drivers and signalling.
|Posted on Friday, 06 October, 2006 - 04:25 pm: |
Yet there are overbridges at every station on the line, including Forest Hill.
|Posted on Friday, 10 November, 2006 - 06:24 pm: |
Good news for Forest Hill from the Department of Transport. We are in the next round of funding for increased accessibility at stations. Work will be carried out by Network Rail and completed between 2009 - 2011.
The press release can be seen at:
|Posted on Friday, 10 November, 2006 - 08:06 pm: |
Michael, before Sherwood corrects you, DoT went almost ten years ago. It was reconstituted as Department for Transport, DfT, a few years ago. A private school education followed by Oxbridge, well....
|Posted on Friday, 10 November, 2006 - 08:55 pm: |
Ah yes, the great reforms from the Department Against For and Towards Prepositions.
And in case anybody gets the wrong idea I did not go to private school or Oxbridge.
|Posted on Saturday, 11 November, 2006 - 10:09 pm: |
In correcting you about the Rutland Arms I was not trying to "take the rise out of you"!
|Posted on Sunday, 12 November, 2006 - 09:22 am: |
Michael - my reading of this document is that the largest tranche of money in this scheme is to be spent on a number of "larger" stations and that separate much smaller sums are to be allocated to smaller stations like FH.
The total amount to be spent at FH is £636 ( 50% match funding)for "induction loops and speech enhancement systems at ticket sales windows." Very welcome but not full disability access to the station by any means.
The document is confusing but I think that this is what is says.
|Posted on Friday, 08 December, 2006 - 01:17 pm: |
The guy in the cab office told me this morning that last Saturday 2nd Dec there were a few incidents at the station- one was a drunk gentleman jumping onto the track , however just missed the train and the next one had to be waved down just outside to stop it pulling in. There was also another steaming attack in the afternoon with knives used to threaten people? He was adamant that this was 2nd Dec, not the one a few weeks ago. Can anyone substantiate this?
He also said there were a lot of incidents that probably were not brought to the attention of the public, such as petty crime, fights, etc.
|Posted on Friday, 08 December, 2006 - 01:37 pm: |
and also the police marksmen were crawling all over the station...I know last Sunday afternoon we went for a walk around One Tree Hill and could see helicopters hovering over the station area for some time. Anyone know about this also?
|Posted on Sunday, 10 December, 2006 - 12:54 am: |
In several years of travelling, often late at night, I have never seen a single incident at the station.
That's not to say that the station should not be brought up to Tube standards as soon as possible, with staff in attendance at all times when trains are running, as the station is not currently secure.
|Posted on Sunday, 10 December, 2006 - 11:06 am: |
I travel to West London overground tube stations on the District Line and they are frequently unmanned from late afternoon onwards.
There is CCTV and one of the stations plays classical music to deter criminals .....but I tend to think of Clockwork Orange when I hear the music.
|Posted on Sunday, 28 January, 2007 - 12:12 pm: |
I've not seen anyone so far mention the need for putting rooves over the platforms. At the moment the shelter is hopelessly inadequate during morning rush hour, forcing most people to stand out being battered by the wind, rain and snow. In my opinion, adding better shelter would provide more 'bang for your buck' in terms of improving customer satisfaction than any other possible improvement. Surely some sort of shelter would be relatively quick, cheap and simple to add, and would require very little to maintain. It would also help to keep the ground snow and ice free, thus improving safety in winter and reducing the risk of Network Rail being sued if someone slipped and was injured. Anyone agree? Has anyone raised this with Network Rail or any of the other authorities who have some influence? By the way, thanks to everyone above for what's been achieved so far.
|Posted on Sunday, 28 January, 2007 - 02:14 pm: |
There is a joint Area Forum meeting on 30/1/07 at 7.30pm at St.George's Church Vancouver Road and the East London Line is on the agenda. You could bring up the question of roofs for platform cover there