South Eastern Franchise

We’re collecting views to put toward our response to the Department for Transport (DfT) consultation on the future of our train services.  This page is for general comments and three more for specific issues – see links below – so keep coming back to see how the conversation is developing.

DfT cancels consultation events – now is your last chance to have a say

In addition to going to the public “drop-in” events being held around the South Eastern area we were going to attend a ‘stakeholder’ consultation in Woolwich Town Hall scheduled for Thursday 27th April. One of the benefits of being an ‘official’ transport group is the opportunity to go along and ask questions and generally make a noise at events like these.  Then, on Monday 24th just as their staff  were setting up at Charing Cross station, and without any warning, the DfT cancelled all of the remaining opportunities for direct public engagement. The general election ‘purdah’ is their reason.

Three of those five remaining public events were to be in London (as shown here) and of three stakeholder consultations, the only one in London has also been cancelled!

Despite strong protests by us and other transport groups, supported by Matt Pennycook MP, the DfT refuses to budge. Nor will they consider extending the consultation process to after the election, so…

Make your voice heard

  • Firstly, give us your views here, and then

  • Respond to the Department for Transport consultation

As well as the DfT proposals you will find a response form to download, or you can submit an online response or write to

The DfT deadline is 11:45pm on
Tuesday 23rd May

Here are some key passages from the DfT document on their service proposals:

4.2 Services on the South Eastern network are complex, with many stations offering multiple routes into central London and a choice of London stations including Charing Cross, Cannon Street, Blackfriars and Victoria, with intermediate stops at London Bridge and Waterloo East. For example, services from Lewisham run to Cannon Street, Charing Cross and Victoria. While this increases direct journey opportunities for passengers, it also introduces operational complexity, requiring trains to cross complex and busy junctions. This is a major contributor to delays, and makes it much harder to recover the service when things go wrong. [p13]

and on page 23:

Challenges Issues to address: Questions for you
To initiate a regular service to a single London Terminal There would be a limit to the improvements that could be made to the timetable without also reducing the number of central London stations served from certain locations at particular times. An example might be for all Metro services on the north Kent (between Dartford and Charlton), Greenwich and Bexleyheath lines to terminate at Cannon Street only.

We believe that the simplicity of a regular service to a single London terminal throughout the day would benefit both regular and occasional passengers. A simpler service can help deliver a step-change improvement in the punctuality of both Metro and Mainline services.

We are aware that losing direct connections to particular central London stations has the potential to inconvenience a number of passengers, by requiring them to change their usual journey patterns.  

(Q17)  How far do you support, or oppose, options to reduce the choice of central London destinations served from individual stations with the aim of providing a more regular, evenly spaced timetable, and a more reliable service?


There are links to other organisations and sources in our Useful links page. This includes other groups who might be more local or relevant to  you than we are.

Give Us Your Thoughts

We’ve set up these pages to capture your views so that we can put an accurate and coherent argument to the Department for Transport (DfT) in response to the public consultationShaping the Future” on our train services under the new franchise.

To make things simpler we have created three categories for your input:

If you have general comments on the proposals or want to raise issues other then those above please write your comments below.  We’ll review the contributions posted here and if other common threads emerge we will add extra themed comments pages.


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