New Franchise – ESRA information

This is an extract that relates to the Marsh Link line.

NEW THAMESLINK FRANCHISE – INITIAL POSITION PAPER BY THE EAST SUSSEX RAIL ALLIANCE (ESRA)

1. ABOUT ESRA

ESRA is an umbrella group comprising the four main rail user groups in East Sussex. These are:

 Bexhill Rail Action Group (BRAG)

 East Coastway Commuter Group (ECCG)

 Marshlink Action Group (MLAG)

 St Leonards and Hastings Rail Improvement Programme (SHRIMP)

2. FRANCHISE ANNOUNCEMENT

ESRA notes the announcement of January 2012 by the Department for Transport regarding the shape, scope and duration of the new Thameslink franchise, in particular the intention to merge existing Thameslink and Southern outer-suburban services into a single franchise.
The purpose of this paper is to identify ESRA’s priorities for the new franchise and the operation of services in East Sussex, and where possible to assist potential bidders for the franchise.

(b) Brighton – Ashford/Marshlink

 ESRA wishes to see this service retained 7 days a week as a through service between Brighton and Ashford, and for extra capacity to be provided on overcrowded services through the provision of new carriages.

 ESRA would wish to see an additional local service between Hastings and Ashford each hour as and when infrastructure allows.

 ESRA also wishes for last trains running at least an hour later on the Marshlink.

 In the medium to long term ESRA wishes to see electrification of the route between Ore and Ashford and its full integration into the East Coastway.

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