New timetable and longer platforms herald end to train overcrowding to Falmer

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Overcrowding on the train services to Falmer on Brighton and Hove Albion FC’s match-days should be a thing of the past when the new timetable comes into force on December 13.

Platform lengths at Falmer Station should have been be extended to cope with longer trains, and eight-car trains will be run on match and other special days, doubling the capacity of each train.

New signalling on the line should be completed by May allowing an increase in services.

There will also be an addition train in the evenings leaving Lewes at 17.22 calling at all stations with a balancing trip leaving Brighton at 17.35, again calling at all stations.

Overall, however, service targets have been missed in all three divisions on the Sussex and Coast services: The station target of 77 per cent only achieved 72 per cent . The train service only achieved 66 per cent out of a targeted 77 per cent and customer service targets of 78 per cent only achieved 73 per cent in figures for 2012.

Over longer distances the overall picture should improve as work will soon be completed on resignalling between Haywards Heath and Three Bridges.

This will enable bi-directional running on each line when there are week-end works and when running alternative trains during service problems.

Meanwhile, off-peak passengers travelling on Southern have paid up to 13 per cent less to travel on its services since privatisation, an independent source shows.

Passengers using Super Off-Peak tickets are paying 13 per cent less in real terms than at the time of privatisation of the railways in 1995, and those travelling on Off-Peak (Saver) tickets are paying 7 per cent less in real terms. Commuters with season tickets have also benefited, with those on both standard and first class seasons, paying the same as they would have done 18 years ago.

The figures were revealed by Rail Magazine journalist, Barry Doe, a leading rail fares expert.

In Rail Magazine (issue 731) he said: “It’s time for some facts. Look at the old SuperSavers and Savers (today’s Super Off-Peak and Off-Peak Returns) - Southern alone has lowered them, between seven per cent and 13 per cent.”