Greenwich to Charing Cross – a two year stay of execution?

You’ve probably seen elsewhere that the government has finally agreed to back the Thameslink Programme, to boost north-south rail services through London. The major aspect of this which affects south-east London is that London Bridge, possibly the most miserable, frustrating place on the network, will be redeveloped.

As Brockley Central reminds us, changes are happening there anyway as part of the unmissable construction of the Shard, including a new bus station. But the government’s backing now means the mess of platforms 1-6 will finally get sorted out.

Of course, there’s a catch… a two year delay in the works, meaning it won’t be complete until 2018, or 18 years after it was originally meant to be finished. The work will see huge disruption later this decade, of course. But there’s one upside to this – commuters who use the Greenwich line (Westcombe Park, Maze Hill, Greenwich and Deptford), may well hang onto their direct trains to Charing Cross for a bit longer, for under the redevelopment plan, the link between that and the Charing Cross tracks is due to be severed for good.


  1. Darryl
    Are you saying that the link between London Bridge and Charing X is due to be severed for good in two years, or just the direct trains from Charlton to Charing X?

  2. In simple terms, whenever a train runs from Deptford to Charing Cross, it has to run across almost every other track to get into platform 6 at London Bridge.

    The junction where Thameslink trains (from New Cross Gate) join those tracks is being rebuilt so it can take 12 trains per hour in that direction. They’ll land in between the tracks to Charing Cross and Cannon Street, meaning Greenwich line trains won’t be able to cross over.

    If you’re really keen, it’s in this Network Rail document (7MB PDF, page 112.

  3. Thanks for keeping us up to speed (hah!) on this, Darryl. I’m a daily enforced user of London Bridge (particularly since the last timetable change that withdrew the evening peak services from Charing Cross to Greenwich), and hate the experience of trying to get on to a train on the horribly narrow platform 1 at London Bridge. It’s irritating as hell that in the long term our link with Charing Cross will be severed (as it is already on Saturdays when frankly, Cannon St as a terminus is of no use to anyone), but if the rebuilding of London Bridge means wider platforms/easier access between platforms and longer trains, then I guess that’s some kind of improvement.

  4. Hi Darryl –

    This is probably a dumb question, but I’ve hunted around and can’t find a definitive answer anywhere: in the 2016/17 period when trains to CST are not stopping at LBG, and as the Greenwich line trains run only to CST during the day – does that mean that there will be no LBG service from GNW (other than the rush-hour Charing X trains) for those two years?

    Thanks in advance!

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