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Deadline for petitions against HS2 project

Local authorities and businesses in the Capital affected by the first phase of the HS2 high speed rail project must submit their petitions to parliament today.

Petitions on phase one of the proposals from London to the West Midlands are due to be put before a parliamentary committee of six MPs to consider.

Individuals and other petitioners have until May 23 to submit their petitions.


Station overhaul will 'transform travel through London'

Developers behind the renovation of London Bridge station claim the extensive work will result in a "bigger and brighter station" which will transform north-south travel through London.

The work, due to be completed in 2018, will enable trains to run with "Tube-like frequency" every two to three minutes, Network Rail claims.

Network Rail claim the new platforms will transform north-south travel in London. Credit: Network Rail

Passengers will be able to travel more efficiently and make easier connections to other rail services as a result of the improved facilities.

When complete, the station will be longer than the Shard is tall while the entire length of the platforms will be covered by undulating canopies of steel and aluminum.

The station will be longer than the Shard is tall when the work is complete. Credit: Network Rail

Dave Ward, Network Rail route managing director, said: “This huge investment in rebuilding London Bridge station will transform rail travel in London for millions of people across London and the south east.

"By 2018, London Bridge will be the most modern station in Britain with more space, better connections and great facilities."

Read: New platforms on schedule to open at London Bridge

New platforms on schedule to open at London Bridge

The first phase of the extensive redevelopment of London Bridge railway station is on course to finish next week but passengers have been warned to expect further disruption as renovations continue.

The overhaul will 'result in a bigger and brighter station', developers claim. Credit: Network Rail

Two new platforms will be brought into use on March 31 before another two are closed for the next stage of the process.

The station is being redeveloped as part of the Government-sponsored £6.5 billion Thameslink Programme which developers claim will remove bottlenecks to enable a more efficient service and to reduce the pressure on the Underground.

The continued overhaul of the station, which began in May 2013, will result in disruption to passengers in late March, August and December.


Network Rail boss' 'unreserved apology' to bereaved

The chief executive of Network Rail, Mark Carne, has made an "unreserved apology to those who have been let down" by the authority's failings in managing the risks of level crossings.

Speaking on Daybreak, Mr Carne also apologised for the behaviour of Network Rail in dealing with the bereaved.

In response, Chris Bazlinton - father of Olivia Bazlinton, who died at a level crossing in 2005 - said he was "encouraged" by the comments and would be holding Network Rail to account.

Mr Bazlinton added: "I think the future is bright. I think this report will lead to much safer railways."

Read more: Network Rail boss apologises over fatal level crossing failings



'Much more urgency' needed from Network Rail

Network Rail need to approach the safety risks caused by level crossings with "much more urgency", the head of the transport select committee has said.

Louise Ellman told Daybreak some level crossings could be closed, while "others can be changed" if Network Rail prioritised the necessary changes.

Read: Network Rail says sorry over level crossings failure


Network Rail says sorry over level crossing failings

Flowers are left at the level crossing in Elsenham, Essex Sunday December 4, 2005. Credit: Stefan Rousseau/PA Archive

A House of Commons Transport Committee report on level crossing safety has been especially critical of Network Rail's handling of Elsenham level crossing tragedy in Essex in December 2005 in which Olivia Bazlinton, 14, and Charlotte Thompson, 13, were killed.

Chief executive Mark Carne followed severe criticism in a report by MPs of Network Rail's treatment of families affected by level crossing tragedies by issuing a "full and unreserved" apology.

"Today, I wish to extend a full and unreserved apology on behalf of Network Rail to all those whose life has been touched by a failing, however large or small, made by this company in managing public safety at level crossings and in failing to deal sensitively with the families affected.

"Nothing we can say or do will lessen the pain felt by the families of those killed or injured at a level crossing. Today NR is a very different company to the one which existed at the time of these tragic accidents." Mr Carne said.

Read: MPs issue warning over level crossings safety fears


Network Rail boss apologises to families

the scene at Elsenham railway station in Essex, following the deaths of Charlotte Thompson and Olivia Bazlinton. Credit: PA Wire

Families bereaved by level crossing accidents will receive a "full and unreserved apology" from the boss of Network Rail today.

The move from NR chief executive Mark Carne followed severe criticism in a report by MPs of NR's treatment of families affected by level crossing tragedies.

More: Level crossings 'exceed risk limit'

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