Thursday 27 May 2021
‘Highest Risk’ Level Crossing in South East London to be closed with alternative route enhanced
The highest risk level crossing in South East London is set to be closed after a series of safety incidents.
An alternative route for people using Angerstein footpath level crossing, in Charlton, is identified in plans announced by Network Rail today.
The crossing is used by nearly 700 people a day, and recent near misses include a person carrying a baby, walking along the line to the next station, children playing on the track and assorted trespass incidents which have required train drivers to apply their emergency brakes.
Fiona Taylor, Network Rail’s Route Director for Kent, said: “We have announced today our intention to close Angerstein level crossing near Charlton due to the safety risk it poses to users, passengers and our rail colleagues.
"Angerstein crossing is currently registered as the most dangerous of the level crossings which we operate in South East London, with many incidents where drivers of trains had to apply their emergency brakes to avoid people on the track.
“The closure will not be immediate, and we will be in close communication with the local community about the alternative route which is chosen. We understand that many residents will be disappointed by this closure but their safety and that of passengers and rail colleagues is our priority.”
Network Rail is now proposing an alternative route which would divert those wishing to cross the line along a 240-metre diversion or an approximately 4-minute walk, via Farmdale Road and Fairthorn Road. The alternative walking route is step-free, so will not exclude members of the public who are currently unable to access the footpath crossing.
A detailed review of the crossing by Network Rail found that it was one of the busiest foot crossings in the railway's Kent route, with 675 users a day on average..
Network Rail is committing to invest in the alternative route via Farmdale and Fairthorn Road, improving safety for users of the alternative route.
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We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.
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