Passengers encouraged to check before they travel after landslip hits Sussex railway: Ripe landslip site, Sussex

Monday 14 Mar 2016

Passengers encouraged to check before they travel after landslip hits Sussex railway

South East

Passengers are being advised to check before they travel this week after a landslip damaged the railway between Eastbourne and Lewes, in Sussex.

Trains are still running on the route, but are subject to a 5mph speed restriction through the site for safety reasons. While this restriction allows trains to continue to run, it does mean that services have had to be amended to avoid delaying other trains.

The slip, between Glynde and Berwick, near Ripe, is being monitored by Network Rail engineers, who are also carrying out tests on the line to investigate the cause and plan repairs. Train services on the line are operated by Southern.

Network Rail’s geotechnical manager for the South East, Derek Butcher, said: “We are watching this site closely and working on a timescale and a plan for repairs.

“We estimate that the section we will need to repair will be 100 metres long, and in order to do that kind of heavy repair work, we will also need to build a temporary road to allow our engineering equipment to access the railway.

“Once we have that in place, we can begin the work to bring the railway back up to full speed. We appreciate everyone’s patience while this goes on.”

Network Rail staff are digging bore holes into the railway to look deeper into the embankment, which dates from the construction of the line in 1846, and planning repairs.

It is likely that the speed restriction will remain in place for at least the rest of this week until a definitive timescale can be put in place.

Passengers can check train times with operator Southern at or at

Contact information

Passengers / community members
Network Rail national helpline
03457 11 41 41

Latest travel advice
Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Network Rail press office - Chris Denham
Media relations manager (South East route)
020 3357 7969
07515 626530

About Network Rail

Network Rail owns, manages and develops Britain's railway - the 20,000 miles of track, 40,000 bridges and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations (the largest of which we also run). In partnership with train operators we help people take more than 1.65bn journeys by rail every year and move hundreds of millions of tonnes of freight, saving almost 8m lorry journeys. We employ 36,000 people across Britain and work round-the-clock, each and every day, to provide a safe, reliable railway.

About the Railway Upgrade Plan

The Railway Upgrade Plan is Network Rail's investment plan for Britain's railways. It makes up two-thirds of Network Rail's £40bn spending priorities for the five years to 2019 and represents the biggest sustained programme of rail modernisation since the Victoria era. It is designed to provide more capacity, relieve crowding and respond to the tremendous growth Britain's railways continue to experience; passenger numbers have doubled in the past 20 years and are set to double again over the next 25 years - so we need to continue to invest in building a bigger, better railway. For passengers, that means:

  • longer, faster more frequent trains;
  • better, more reliable infrastructure; and
  • better facilities for passengers, especially at stations.

Follow us on Twitter: @networkrailPR
Visit our online newsroom: