Arundel Town Council have received the following advance information from Network Rail Southern Projects:
Engineering work affecting all lines via Horsham in Summer 2021
We are writing to update you on planned engineering work on the Arun Valley (Three Bridges to Arundel via Horsham) and Mole Valley (Dorking to Horsham) railway lines in Summer 2021.
This will include a nine-day line closure of all rail routes via Horsham.
Work will take place on the following dates;
* Saturday 24th July – Sunday 25th July
* Saturday 31st July – Sunday 1st August
* Saturday 14th August – Sunday 22nd August
Why are we doing this and what work will be doing?
To improve journeys for customers on the two routes, we need to replace obsolete 1980s track and infrastructure with modern and more reliable equipment through sizeable investment.
Services on the Arun Valley line are currently the worst performing in the region and this is partly why the upgrade works are needed. Over the past year, 61.7% of trains arrived at each station on the route within a minute of their scheduled time. By way of comparison, this is 14.2 percentage points lower than the Southern Railway average for the same period.
Taking key lines out of use for extended periods of time is not a decision that we take easily. However, by delivering this work over two weekends and a nine-day closure – we eliminate the need for the alternative of several bank holiday closures, supported by a long series of weekend closures over two to three years. This means that we can reduce the overall disruption and deliver benefits to customers faster.
We are developing proposals for additional work with the Department for Transport for delivery during the same period of engineering closures. This proposed work includes an upgrade to Littlehaven station and an upgrade of the track layout and sidings at Horsham, both of which would enhance the capability of the line and unlock the possibility of running additional train services in the future.
We are also identifying smaller items of work to deliver at each station that is closed during the nine days, such as the painting of platform canopies, improvements to station wayfinding and other smaller areas of improvement. As these plans develop, we’d like to discuss them with you and other stakeholders across the route.
What does this mean for our passengers?
Train services will be suspended along much of the Arun Valley line, as far as Three Bridges, and between Horsham and Dorking. Plans for alternative transport, including alternative routes and rail replacement buses are being developed and will be shared in good time to enable passengers to plan their journeys in advance.
Longer distance rail services such as from Portsmouth & Southsea or Chichester that would normally use the Arun Valley will be diverted via Hove and the Brighton Main Line.