Select Committee on Transport Written Evidence

Supplementary memorandum by the Go-Ahead Group (OPT 09A)

  I refer to Question 293 of my evidence to the Select Committee and the request to supply additional information.

  I can give no conclusive explanation to the phenomenon identified by the Committee. However, we now recognise that the evening peak has spread later—the equivalent to the morning two hour peak (0700-0859 London arrival time) is probably 1630-1929, or possibly even later.

  One relevant factor which may help answer the in balance in loading, is that Thameslink has more evening peak paths via both London Bridge (for Brighton services) and via Herne Hill (for Sutton/Wimbledon services) than in the morning. For example, Thameslink has no northbound arrival at London Bridge between 0715 and 0909, with Brighton services during that period having to be routed via Herne Hill, whereas there are six southbound between 1645 and 1840. This, in turn, creates slots at Herne Hill in the evening for a greater number of Sutton/Wimbledon trains. It is noticeable that Thameslink carries more passengers in the evening peak from London to the south than into London in the morning peak—significantly so on the Sutton/Wimbledon services where the evening figure is almost 14% higher than the morning.

  This suggests that there are a number of passengers who travel into London in the morning on South Central (and probably some from Wimbledon on SWT), but travel home by Thameslink. Whilst I cannot definitely prove this explanation, I suggest it is the most significant contributor to the difference in am and pm peak loading on South Central.

Keith Ludeman

Chief Executive—Rail

February 2003

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