A Southend News Network investigation has discovered that there are now plans in place to build a THIRD RAILWAY LINE from South Essex to London, with government transport chiefs said to be ‘disgusted’ with the way that c2c has handled the recent timetable changes on their route. According to a source within the Department of Transport, this will be the only solution to deal with severe overcrowding on the two existing routes because of the £4.8bn in costs that would be incurred by switching back to the previous and perfectly adequate timetable.
Based upon the plans that we have seen, which unfortunately we cannot reprint here due to the strict ‘Classified’ status that is attached to them, the third line will still run from Shoeburyness to London Fenchurch Street, but at the same time it will provide stations in some of the ‘forgotten’ locations that have been mercilessly missed out by the c2c and Greater Anglia routes. After beginning at the existing station in Shoeburyness, it will take the following route with new stations being built where necessary, before it reaches Upminster and joins the existing route into London:
- Great Wakering
- Middle Wakering
- Little Wakering
- London Southend Airport (Not evenings/weekends)
- North Benfleet
- Crays Hill
- Little Bursted
- Upminster *
- Barking *
- West Ham *
- Limehouse *
- Fenchurch Street
* ONE-STOP HOPPING BETWEEN THESE STATIONS WILL BE PROHIBITED TO PREVENT OVERCROWDING, WITH A £30 FIXED PENALTY IN PLACE FOR ANYONE WHO IS CAUGHT DOING SO.
Companies are being invited to bid for the new franchise, with both c2c and Greater Anglia expressing an interest in doing so.
c2c Statement – ‘We are incredibly excited to announce our intention to bid for this franchise. While some companies may introduce a timetable that is based on logic and the order in which stations are located one after the other in a long line, we have something extra-special planned that we cannot disclose due to the sensitivity of the process – watch this space!’
Greater Anglia Statement – ‘This new route from South Essex to London provides a number of exciting opportunities for growth, and as a precaution we have stockpiled an extensive collection of 1980’s electric rolling stock just in case we win.’
With planning permission said to be a ‘mere formality’ now, work on constructing the line could begin as early as February 2016.
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