Network Rail reopens Tonbridge to Redhill line after two week closure caused by landslip

The landslip near Edenbridge Credit: Network Rail

A train line between Kent and Surrey has reopened more than two weeks after a landslip caused it to be closed.

The Tonbridge to Redhill route was forced to shut because of a landslip at Bough Beech, near Edenbridge in Kent.

Emergency repairs have strengthened the bank so it is safe for Southern Railway services to resume.

Heavy rain was blamed for the subsidence along a 100 metre stretch of track.

A small number of early morning trains before 7am were replaced by buses, with the route fully reopening from 7am.

National Rail says that passengers may notice a 'slight delay of up to 5 minutes' between Edenbridge and Penshurst due to a temporary speed restriction along a small section of track.

The landslip at Edenbridge as engineers worked night and day Credit: Network Rail

Mark Killick, Network Rail Southern Region Director of Engineering and Asset Management, said, "Our colleagues have worked tirelessly around the clock with our contractors over the past two weeks to repair this landslip, on what’s been quite a complex site for a number of reasons.

"I want to thank our passengers, freight customers and lineside neighbours for their patience while we’ve carried out this work, which has essentially been a giant underpinning operation.

"As each steel pile was installed we gained more and more confidence that we would be able to reopen the railway – and the work we’ve done here at Bough Beech will leave this line in a much more better and more reliable condition for the future.

"We’re sorry for the inconvenience that has been caused but there was no option but to get this work done when we did, especially given the need to reintroduce services in time for schools reopening after the Easter break."

91 sheet piles, eight metre long sheets of metal and soil nails have been installed with passengers having to use buses instead while the work took place.

The news will be welcomed by commuters and school children who faced disruption after the Easter break.

Mark Pavlides, Chief Customer Officer for Govia Thameslink Railway, said, “On behalf of our customers we’re very pleased that Network Rail have completed these large and complex emergency repairs on schedule.

"We are aware that any disruption to our services is inconvenient for customers, so we’re grateful for their patience and understanding while the work was carried out.”

Want a quick and expert briefing on the biggest news stories? Listen to our latest podcasts to find out What You Need To Know...