Major Changes To London Bridge Rail Services Coming Soon

Rachel Holdsworth
By Rachel Holdsworth Last edited 38 months ago
Major Changes To London Bridge Rail Services Coming Soon

Photo by David Hardman from the Londonist Flickr pool

Do you use London Bridge rail station? We do. So join us in commiserating over what's about to be three years of hating commuting even more than usual.

London Bridge is being extensively re-modelled as part of the Thameslink programme. Eventually it will mean more trains get past that bottleneck and into central London and beyond — nine 'through' platforms instead of six. But before we get to that...

Christmas and New Year 2014

Between 20 December and 4 January, Southern services won't run to and from London Bridge. Instead, it looks like trains will run to London Victoria or, occasionally, terminate early at South Bermondsey. It's all a bit of a mess so we advise you check out Southern's website for timetable changes.

Between 22-24 December there are some changes to Southeastern services, the main one being that morning peak trains to Charing Cross won't stop at London Bridge. (Think of this as practice for next year.) No Southeastern trains will call at New Cross and St John's on 27-28 December. Again, look at the Southeastern website for more detail.

Thameslink services won't call at London Bridge between 20 December and 4 January, instead taking an alternative route via Blackfriars and East Croydon.

London Overground isn't operating from New Cross between 22-24 December, nor between Surrey Quays and West Croydon, Crystal Palace and Clapham Junction on 27-28 December, so that's another alternative route gone.

Don't forget: this is all in addition to the usual changes/shutdowns over Christmas and New Year, so always check before you travel.

From January 2015

This is when the real fun and games start.

From Monday 5 January, Thameslink through services will not call at London Bridge. Until 2018. Yes, that's at least three years. Trains will instead go via Elephant and Castle — though not all trains will call there. There'll be a half-hourly off peak service between Brighton and London Bridge on weekdays and Saturdays, with a very limited service during peak times.

From Monday 12 January, Southeastern services to Charing Cross will not call at London Bridge until summer 2016. If you want to travel to London Bridge you'll need to get a Cannon Street train. If you want to travel to or from a) New Cross, St John's, Deptford, Greenwich, Maze Hill, Westcombe Park; and b) Plumstead, Woolwich Dockyard, Belvedere and Erith you'll also need to catch a Cannon Street train as Charing Cross services will no longer stop. In the case of the first group that change is permanent; for the latter set of stations, Charing Cross services will be restored in summer 2016.

From August 2016

A really early heads up here: when Charing Cross services start calling at London Bridge again, Cannon Street trains will stop. It'll be another 18 months or so after that before everything starts running to London Bridge again.

For more information on the entire situation see the Thameslink programme website and/or follow @TLProgramme on Twitter.

Last Updated 09 December 2014

Mark

One of the other big annoyances is that now there's no easy way to travel from Charing X to London Bridge - either having to go via Monument or Waterloo (neither of which is a particularly fun interchange).

Plenty of commuters who work in London Bridge but live on SW Trains also connect through Waterloo East for the hop to London Bridge - these passengers are now being told to take the Jubilee line. Which is, of course, renowned for its spare capacity from Waterloo in the morning rush.

Beau Hampton

Is the single track from the Charing Cross/Blackfriars direction into Cannon Street going to survive all this? Saw it out of train window yesterday and noticed one of the new bits above Borough Market that looks like it might sever that old line.

td1975

What happens to us poor sods that get the thameslink service normally, the trains are already rammed and if it means additional people and no extra trains...wtf!!!

Adam

Londonist failing to see the bigger picture AGAIN!
Turning into a localised version of the Daily Mail these days...

Gary

Surely worth pointing out that Thameslink services continue to stop at Blackfriars, given that is a short stroll along the river from London Bridge. Less likely to cause panic than the suggestion that people have to make their way to Elephant.

Martin

Surely if it fixes the incessant issues at LB and creates a decent station serving as another gateway to London that has to be a positive thing. The distances are hardly insurmountable by foot or boris bike.

Colleen O'Sullivan

This is why I ride my bike to work.