Uckfield railway station

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Uckfield National Rail
Uckfield Railway Station.jpg
Present station before construction of new ticket office in 2010
Location
Place Uckfield
Local authority District of Wealden
Grid reference TQ473209
Operations
Station code UCK
Managed by Southern
Number of platforms 1
DfT category E
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2011/12 Increase 0.445 million
2012/13 Increase 0.538 million
2013/14 Increase 0.547 million
2014/15 Increase 0.552 million
2015/16 Decrease 0.481 million
History
Original company Lewes and Uckfield Railway
Pre-grouping London, Brighton and South Coast Railway
Post-grouping Southern Railway
18 October 1858 Opened
January 1990 Track singled
13 May 1991 Relocated
9 December 2000 Original station demolished
16 March 2010 Rebuilt
National RailUK railway stations
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Uckfield from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
170433 at Edinburgh Waverley.JPG UK Railways portal

Uckfield railway station is the southern terminus of a branch of the Oxted Line in England, serving the town of Uckfield, East Sussex. It is 46 miles 8 chains (74.2 km) down-line from London Bridge; the preceding station is Buxted.

The station and all trains that call are operated by Southern.

The line used to continue to Lewes and Brighton until 1969.

History[edit]

Original Uckfield station in 2007

The first station was opened in 1858 by the Lewes and Uckfield Railway Company and was situated south of the High Street level crossing. It became a through station when the line was extended to Tunbridge Wells West in 1868. With the closure of the line south to Lewes in 1969 the original station found itself stranded on the wrong side of a level crossing on the High Street which created traffic congestion whenever a train was arriving or departing from the station. The decision was therefore made to close the original station and to open a new station on the other side of the High Street level crossing. The present Uckfield station opened in 1991 replacing the original structure which was sited 55 yards (50 m) to the south.The original station was demolished on 9 December 2000 after it had been damaged by flooding.[1]

As part of Network Rail's national stations improvement programme, Uckfield received a new station building to replace the 1991 portakabin-type structure which was deemed "not fit for purpose".[2] The new building was built to Network Rail's modular, pre-fabricated design used at Mitcham Eastfields and Greenhithe.[3] The components for Uckfield's new station building - consisting of a ticket office, public toilet, staff accommodation, ticket hall and café - were manufactured by Britspace in Yorkshire and installed by contractors Bryen & Langley.[4] The new building, which cost £750,000,[5] was opened for passenger use on 16 March 2010.[6]

Services[edit]

The typical off-peak service is one train per hour to London Bridge, calling at Buxted, Crowborough, Eridge, Ashurst, Cowden, Hever, Edenbridge Town, Hurst Green, Oxted and East Croydon. On Sundays this is reduced to an hourly shuttle to Oxted calling at all stations. Previously, most off peak trains from Uckfield only went as far as Oxted (with an interchange with East Grinstead line services), but since Southern has taken over the service, it has been extended and passenger numbers have risen. In December 2010 a new later evening service from London Bridge (around 11pm) was introduced allowing passengers for the first time in recent years to travel home from London in the late evening.

Future[edit]

Platform extension[edit]

Platforms on the Uckfield branch of the Oxted Line were extended in 2016 to hold ten carriage trains to allow longer services to run during peak hours. The extension of services to ten coaches caused Southern to acquire four Class 170 turbostars from ScotRail, increasing capacity. The Class 170s were converted to Class 171s to allow full compatibility with Southern's existing Class 171 fleet.[citation needed]

Electrification[edit]

Whereas the neighbouring East Grinstead line has 750 V DC electric traction, motive power on Uckfield line is provided by Class 171 diesel multiple units. It has been proposed many times that the line be electrified, but this is considered too expensive for the amount of passenger traffic.[7] Rail usage figures published in March 2010 showed that journeys from the station had increased by 179% in the five years to 2008/09.[8]

Proposed Wealden Line reopening[edit]

Since 1986 there had been a campaign to re-open the line south of Uckfield through to Lewes, known as the Wealden Line, which attracted cross-party support.[9] In 2008 the "Wealdenlink" presentation was published which gave new impetus to the campaign for reinstatement.[10] On 23 July 2008 the Central Rail Corridor Board (a joint group of local councils and stakeholders) commissioned study by Network Rail reported that there was not an economic case for reopening, citing a £141 million cost and an low "benefit-cost ratio" of 0.64 to 0.79 when a figure of 1.5 is the minimum required by the Department for Transport to make a scheme viable.[11]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Disused Stations". Subterranea Britannica. 
  2. ^ Network Rail (2010-03-16). "New Station at Uckfield Opens for Passengers". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  3. ^ Network Rail (2009-07-02). "Uckfield Passengers to Benefit from a New Station". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  4. ^ "Modular building transforms Uckfield station". Modern Railways. 67 (739): 8. April 2010. 
  5. ^ Uckfield News (2010-03-17). "New Uckfield rail station opens". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  6. ^ "Newly constructed station building opens at Uckfield" (PDF). Railway Herald (216). 2010-03-22. p. 6. Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  7. ^ Tony McNulty (2004-06-10). "Lewes-Uckfield Rail Link". HC Deb, 10 June 2004, c495. House of Commons. Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  8. ^ Southern (2010-03-17). "Brand New Station Opens at Uckfield". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  9. ^ Hart, Brian. "Wealden Line Campaign". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  10. ^ Hart, Brian. "WealdenLink". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 
  11. ^ East Sussex County Council (2008-10-20). "Lewes-Uckfield rail link". Retrieved 2010-03-31. 

External links[edit]

Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Buxted   Southern
Oxted Line
Uckfield branch
  Terminus
Disused railways
Buxted
Line and station open
  British Rail
Southern Region

Wealden Line
  Isfield
Line closed; station open
Heritage Railways  Proposed Heritage railways
Terminus   Lavender Line   Isfield
Line closed; station open

Coordinates: 50°58′08″N 0°05′46″E / 50.969°N 0.096°E / 50.969; 0.096