More misery for commuters as signalling fault causes delays

A busy Brighton railway station (Photograph: Eddie Mitchell)
A busy Brighton railway station (Photograph: Eddie Mitchell)

Beleaguered commuters suffered more misery this morning (July 3) after a signalling fault between Brighton and Three Bridges caused delays.

London-bound trains on the Brighton Mainline will be subject to disruption until midday, Southern Rail said.

This comes after a series of incidents last night (July 2) caused delays for passengers travelling between Brighton and London.

A Network Rail spokesman said: “We are really sorry for the disruption passengers had to put up with last night after a serious problem with the signalling near Wivelsfield. It proved to be a really tough issue to fix and we weren’t able to get the line back in normal use until 5.30am today.

“We really appreciate everyone’s patience.”

Network Rail said the problem affected five signals – the traffic lights of the railway – which were stuck on red and could not be cleared to green.

The problem was in Wivelsfield and affected both London-bound and coast-bound trains.

This morning Southern said: “A fault with the signalling system between Brighton and Three Bridges means trains may be cancelled or delayed by up to 10 minutes.

“We anticipate disruption will continue until 12.00.

“Since the evening of Monday July 2, a multiple signalling failure has been affecting eight individual signals in the Wivelsfield area. As a result, trains were being verbally talked past four signals towards London, and four signals towards Brighton, accumulating a total of 20 minutes delay in either direction as a minimum.

“When a signal failure occurs on the railway, trains have to stop at the affected signals and gain verbal permission from the signaller in order to proceed onward. This process can take up to five minutes per train, per time, and can increase during peak periods.

“Network Rail engineers have been working throughout the night trying to rectify the issue, and have managed to get signals working as of 0550am this morning.

“The Brighton Mainline is a busy part of Govia Thameslink Railway network, and they’re actively working with Network Rail to keep disruption to a minimum.”