No through trains to Brighton?


On Monday June 26, Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR), the parent company of Southern railway, released the first results on its consultation on changing the times of trains travelling to and from Rye. During the first phase of consultation 510 people responded on the Marshlink service and 71% have opted to split the Ashford to Brighton trains at Hastings to help reduce overcrowding on the line. The remaining 29% opted to retain a through service from Ashford to Brighton.

In light of the initial consultation result, GTR is currently recommending that the service is split at Hastings from May 2018. This will increase capacity on the line by allowing longer trains to run from Hastings to Brighton, to better manage overcrowding especially in the summer months when the line gets very busy.

For train users in Rye this will mean no through trains to Eastbourne and Brighton. The consultation fails to commit to increasing the number of trains on the Ashford to Hastings section though it is ‘looking into’ later evening services from Ashford.

The consultation on GTR’s timetable was heralded as ‘the biggest overhaul of rail services since the swinging sixties’ and the results of the first phase can be found here: You will need to go to page 42 for the recommendations on the Marshlink service that will effect Rye.

Nearly 13,000 people from across the country had a say as part of the consultation. The second phase is currently on-going and you have until July 27 to get your comments in on the train service to Rye. You can submit your comments here:

In the meantime commuters face an overtime ban

Photo: library image


  1. The point of the Ashford- Brighton through train is to link Ashford (and Paris, Brussels, etc.) with the south coast. Changing at Hastings or Eastbourne would interrupt the journey.
    Last time I travelled on this route, from Sussex University (involving a change at Lewes), the train was stuck at Eastbourne for 15 minutes while Southern tried to find a driver!

  2. The salient aspect for travellers to and from Rye is that they will now have to change trains at Hastings – whether the connecting train may be split en route is of rather less concern. Southern say that the proposals aim ‘to address significant crowding issues on trains between Brighton and Ashford…’. aka too many blasted passengers. So well done – this should certainly discourage people from using the service – I for one shall be reverting to my car for the trip to Brighton!


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