Lord Bassam calls for urgent assessment of Brighton Mainline 2

LABOUR’S Lord Bassam wants an urgent assessment of BML2 and work on its Sussex Phase to begin as soon as possible.

In an exclusive major interview in RAIL, he says a longer-term Thameslink franchise, which is currently in the bidding process, could provide the investment which is “within reasonable funding parameters”.

Re-opening the Uckfield line to the coast would, he says, “have a distinctly positive impact across Sussex the day the trains start running.”

He is calling for cross-party support and Network Rail, London Overground and Transport for London to “work together to deliver BML2 for London and the south” and says “I intend doing everything I can to move this project swiftly forward.”

In 2008 Network Rail’s engineers concluded there were no insuperable obstacles to re-establishing the Sussex railway between Lewes and Uckfield.

Visit www.bml2.co.uk/the-news