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Commuters in for "travel chaos" during improvement works at London Bridge
NEWS Shopper readers are in store for years of "transport chaos" when trains cease to stop at London Bridge because of improvement works.
Network Rail has announced that in 2015 and 2016, all trains from Lewisham, Greenwich, Bromley and Bexley will run straight through to Charing Cross without stopping at London Bridge.
Similar plans will also affect trains running to Cannon Street the following year.
Residents in Charlton, Orpington, Sidcup and Lewisham wishing to get to the station will have to get off a stop early at New Cross or Deptford or travel to Cannon Street or Charing Cross and use other methods of public transport.
Brendan Dorey who lives in Kidbrooke Way, Kidbrooke, often uses London Bridge station to visit friends in Holborn.
He said: "It is pretty disgusting because it is a service we are paying for.
"It is not on. London Bridge is an important station.
"You've got Guy’s Hospital there so you will have to get off at Waterloo East and then struggle to make your way back, or get the Jubilee line which is ludicrous.
"If you are disabled it is going to be even more difficult to try and get around it.
"I have spinal degeneration and already struggle to get on the train when the carriages are shorter than they should be and I have to hike down the platform."
Other concerns have been raised about how the change will affect the local housing market.
John Hine from the Blackheath Society Committee said: "The prospect of four years of transport chaos, which is what people will be anticipating, is likely to have a significant effect on sales and lettings of houses and flats across the area affected from now on, not 2014.”
Network Rail plans to create new platforms for more trains, lay down new tracks and create a bigger station.
The improvements will be funded by the Thameslink programme - a £6bn Government investment in rail.
A Network Rail spokesman said: "Passengers in the south-east are not being targeted - this is not a case of who gets the good and who gets the bad news.
"There is no getting away from it, there is going to be a period of disruption and passengers will need to think about their journeys.
"It’s important for people to know this is something they are going to have to take action about and is not something they can just address on the day."
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