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David Pollock
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Charlie Mullins

London Bridge is falling down

Network Rail bosses this week warned of years of daily disruption for commuters as they set out the timetable for the £700m rebuilding of London Bridge station and surrounding bridges.

The company said that work on London Bridge will be the biggest station redevelopment in the capital in a generation and will run from May next year until 2018.

The five-year project will create a new concourse plus three more through platforms and will boost passenger capacity from 50 million to 75 million per year. Work will affect Southern, Thameslink and Southeastern services.

London's oldest station, which opened in 1836, will remain in use during the redevelopment, which is part of the £6bn project to upgrade Thameslink.

This phase will see upgrade work on seven miles of track and signalling equipment in south-east London around London Bridge station and the rebuilding of several bridges.

The London Overground extension to Clapham Junction via London Bridge will open on 9 December, but at the same time Southern's south London line services between Victoria and London Bridge via Denmark Hill will be withdrawn.

From May 2013 three platforms - 14, 15 and 16 - will be closed to the public and Southern trains will be diverted to other platforms, resulting in changes to train times.

Between December 2014 and 2018 Thameslink trains will be diverted away from the station.

Southeastern trains to Charing Cross will not call at London Bridge for a year from 2015 and services to Canon Street will also not stop there between 2016 until late 2017.

Network Rail said that the upgrade work will make the station more accessible, reduce congestion and increase the number of trains stopping at the station from 70 to 88 a day.

By Martin Regan

London Bridge is falling down
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