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Landslip means more delays for commuters

Commuters are facing further delays- after a landslip on the railway line between Farnham and Alton. The track has been shut since the embankment became unstable. Rock and soil fell away from the track at Wrecclesham. It's believed it was caused by heavy rain earlier this month. Engineers are now working to make the area safe as Sally Simmonds reports.


Rail disruption continues - Dover sea wall repairs won't be finished till December

Dover's sea wall collapsed last December

Network Rail have revealed that the railway line between Dover and Folkestone which was damaged when a sea wall collapsed, will not be fully repaired until the end of the year.

The line was breached near Dover at Christmas time and it was known that the work would take some time, but today's announcement is the first confirmation that works are not expected to be complete until December. It means many more months of disruption for commuters who use rail routes in the area.

ITV Meridian correspondent Derek Johnson filed this report back in February when questions about the issue were raised.

Upgrade to rail network running 'four years late'

The biggest ever upgrade to the regions rail network will be up to four ye​a​r​s​ late. That's a​cording to a new report from Network Rail.

It means a promise to end the overcrowding crisis and speed up journey times has again been delayed.

It also means new trains, including the new Hitachi bullet trains, may be left sitting in the sidings.

The cost of the project has risen from around £800 million to £2.8 billion. Network Rail say the project is more complex and costly than it first thought.

Improvements at Great Western Railway were due from May of this year. But delays to electrify the line from Paddington to Oxford, Basingstoke, Newbury and Swindon means parts of the project​ won't happen until 2020.

Major improvements are also​ due on the lines from Salisbury to Portsmouth and Brighton. A new link from Reading to Heathrow may not be ready until 2024. Watchdogs say​ its a 'total shambles'.​

Here's our Transport Correspondent, Mike Pearse

Kent rail services closed for weeks after part of sea wall collapses

Rail services between Dover and Folkestone are likely to remain closed for more than a month after part of a sea wall collapsed.

Cracks in the wall were discovered on Christmas Eve - with severe damage caused to the railway line.

Work to repair 250 metres of track is expected to start shortly - but it's not yet known when the line will re-open. Nashreen Issa reports.


Kent rail services closed for weeks after sea wall collapse

Engineers have been assessing the damnage Credit: ITV

Rail services between Dover and Folkestone are likely to remain closed for more than a month after part of a sea wall collapsed due to a high tide.

The cracks were discovered on Christmas Eve. Severe damage has been caused to a number of sections of the track. There are also sink holes two or three metres deep along the length of the wall.

Engineers have been assessing the damage, and work to repair 250 metres of track will start shortly. The sea wall will also need to be rebuilt.

It means a bus replacement service is running on Southeastern Trains between Dover Priory and Folkestone Central. Network Rail say it's not yet clear when the railway will re open.

Cracks in the sea wall at Dover stop rail services between two key Kent port stations

Network Rail say major work will need to be carried out to repair the track and the sea wall will also need to be rebuilt. Rail engineers are on site carrying out a full assessment of the damage. When this is complete Network Rail say they can provide a more accurate estimate about when the the railway will reopen.

A bus replacement service will run the one stop between Dover Priory and Folkestone Central and will remain so while repairs to the line take place.

The damage to the sea wall close to the line can be clearly seen Credit: Network Rail

Some Southeastern high speed trains will be diverted to run between Ashford International and Ramsgate via Canterbury West.

Passengers travelling between Dover and London will be able to use trains to London Victoria via Canterbury East. In addition, a service will run each day between Dover Priory and Ramsgate calling at all stations - Martin Mill, Deal, Walmer and Sandwich.

A Network Rail spokesperson said: “We know how important the railway is for people in this area and our orange army is working round the clock to establish what action needs to be taken, though we know the damage to the sea wall supporting the railway is severe."

Longer platforms, longer trains

Start of work to extend platform at Hever Stn Credit: Network Rail

The Tonbridge MP Tom Tugendhat has formally marked the start of a project that will extend twelve station platforms between Edenbridge and Uckfield. The project will allow the introduction of 10-coach trains that will reduce crowding on the Uckfield line and help to meet growing passenger demand. The new longer trains will increase capacity on the line during the morning peak by 50% from July 2016.

Network Rail will build the longer platforms and infrastructure, and Southern Railway will lease, refurbish and run the trains.

“I am pleased that the platform extensions on the Uckfield line are taking place and will be completed soon. This will mean that commuters and other rail users will be able to have a more comfortable journey as trains are able to take extra carriages. Work is now underway and this will be a huge benefit to the local community in providing a better train service. I look forward to the completion of the work early next year”.

– Tom Tugendhat MP

Parents say daughter's death at rail crossing 'could have been avoided'

Sacha Wheeler was hit by a train as she crossed tracks in Whitstable. Credit: ITV Meridian

The family of a Kent school girl killed as crossed a railway line have hit out at Network Rail for failing to make safety changes sooner.

An inquest heard today that 14-year-old Sacha Wheeler was listening to music on her earphones as she walked home for Sunday dinner when she was hit and killed by a train as she used the Glebe Way rail crossing in Whitstable in August 2014.

Sacha' s aunt made a statement outside the inquest on behalf of Sacha's parents Jim and Heather:

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