Maidstone Line

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Maidstone Line
Kent Railways.svg
The Maidstone Line, shown with other railway lines in Kent.
Overview
Type Suburban rail, Heavy rail
System National Rail
Status Operational
Locale Kent
South East England
Operation
Owner Network Rail
Operator(s) Southeastern
Thameslink
Technical
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) standard gauge
Maidstone Line
Chatham Main Line
to London
Swanley
Swanley Junction
Chatham Main Line
to Faversham
UK road A20.PNG
18-60 UK-Motorway-M25.svg
Eynsford Tunnel (
828 yd
757 m
)
19-39
Lullingstone
(never opened)
Lullingstone Airfield
(never opened)
Eynsford Viaduct
over River Darent
20-32 Eynsford
22-52 Shoreham
24-06
Otford
(Otford Junction 1904–1929)
24-53 UK-Motorway-M26.svg
South Eastern Main Line
to London
Otford(1874–1880)
Bat & Ball
Sevenoaks
South Eastern Main Line
to Tunbridge Wells
26-79 Kemsing
29-52 Borough Green & Wrotham
Offham Siding
34-61 West Malling
35-64 East Malling
37-43 Barming
former Preston Hall Tunnels
33 yd (30 m) & 54 yd (49 m)
Medway Valley Line
River Medway
39-76 Maidstone East
Week Street Tunnel (
98 yd
90 m
)
Wheeler Street Tunnel (
358 yd
327 m
)
42-59 Bearsted
UK-Motorway-M20.svg
High Speed 1
45-02 Hollingbourne
47-36 Harrietsham
49-11 Lenham
53-11 Charing
UK-Motorway-M20.svg
55-61 Hothfield Halt
Ashford West
High Speed 1
South Eastern Main Line
59-19 Ashford International
Marshlink Line
Ashford to Ramsgate Line
(via Canterbury West)
Ashford Steam Centre
High Speed 1
South Eastern Main Line

The Maidstone Line[1][2] diverges from the Chatham Main Line at Swanley Junction and proceeds down the Darenth valley to Otford junction[3] (where the Bat & Ball line[3] divides towards Sevenoaks). It continues via Borough Green & Wrotham and Maidstone East to Ashford, where it joins the South Eastern Main Line.[4]

History[edit]

The line was built by the London, Chatham and Dover Railway from their first line (the Chatham Main Line). Upon the creation of the South Eastern and Chatham Railway the original Ashford terminus was closed in 1899 and services diverted to the South Eastern Railway's Ashford station. The line was electrified in 1939 (750 V DC third rail) to Maidstone East by the Southern Railway prior to World War Two. Electrification between Maidstone East and Ashford was completed in 1961 under the BR 1955 Modernisation Plan.

Infrastructure[edit]

Traction current is supplied at 750 volts DC via the Third Rail. The supply for this is overseen by Paddock Wood Electrical Control Room.[3] Signalling is Track Circuit Block with multiple aspect colour light signals throughout, controlled by Ashford IECC.[3] The line is double track throughout.

Services[edit]

Services on the line are run by Southeastern. Services run to London Victoria and Ashford, with some peak services to Bedford via London Blackfriars, which are run as a joint service with First Capital Connect.

Due to its route between the two main lines through Kent (the South Eastern Main Line and the Chatham Main Line), the line has comparatively infrequent services and longer journey times.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Network Rail (Apr 2001). Southern Appendix. Module SO. p. 1/12. A0260A03.  Retrieved 2012-01-12
  2. ^ Quail Map 5 - England South & London Underground [pages 6,7 & 11A ] February 1998 (Retrieved 2012-01-12)
  3. ^ a b c d Network Rail (Apr 2001). Southern Appendix. Module SO. p. 1/64. A0260A03.  Retrieved 2012-01-12
  4. ^ Network Rail (Apr 2001). Southern Appendix. Module SO. p. 1/54. A0260A03.  Retrieved 2012-01-12
  • Yonge, John (October 1994). Gerald Jacobs, ed. Railway Track Diagrams – Volume 5 England, South and London Underground (1st ed.). Exeter: Quail Map Co. ISBN 1-8983-1907-3. 

Coordinates: 51°16′40″N 0°31′22″E / 51.2778°N 0.5228°E / 51.2778; 0.5228