London-Brighton Railway Line

Department for Transport written question – answered on 16th December 2014.

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Photo of Simon Kirby Simon Kirby Conservative, Brighton, Kemptown

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps Network Rail is taking to improve punctuality on the Brighton mainline; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Claire Perry Claire Perry Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)

Network Rail acknowledge the performance of the Brighton Main Line has not been acceptable over the last few months. Recent periods have seen significant levels of disruption from signalling and track faults, engineering possession overruns, operating problems within both Network Rail and Southern, and external actions including trespass and fatalities. Southern have recognised that performance has not been good enough and have published a Performance Improvement Plan, available at the following web link:

http://www.southernrailway.com/your-journey/performance-results/southern-performance-improvement-plans/

Network Rail are investing in improving the reliability of the assets on the route, including signalling and track renewal schemes, and measures to improve resilience to seasonal weather variations; they are bringing in additional fast response staff across all disciplines, from track, signalling and mobile managers. Network Rail are also bringing in new contingency arrangements to improve their response times. In addition, Southern are taking action to upgrade equipment on trains to improve reliability, to improve crew management arrangements and to communicate with passengers promptly in times of disruption.

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