Death by 1,000 cuts letter to South London Press

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Letter to

South London Press from Mike Colvin

Death by 1,000 cuts    Monday, 01 June 2009

Rod Brown (Letters, May 22) acknowledges that South London is not well served by the Tube.

But he then seems surprised that residents who are thus forced to rely upon infrequent overground rail for their travel, wish to hang on to the limited services that they have.

He then perversely tries to argue that they would be better off if even more of their rail services were scrapped.

What planet is he on?

Let’s try to inject a few hard facts into this Alice in Wonderland debate.

Only 34 out of 270 (12.5 per cent) of Underground plus Docklands Light Railway stations are south of the river.

The bulk of those serve South-west London.

To see how incredibly unbalanced that distribution is, don’t bother with the stylised Tube map, but instead search for South London on the Google Maps website, then select the “more” button and the “transit” option.

The real issue is that South London rail is experiencing “Death by a thousand cuts”.

Last year, Southern train company chopped the two-trains-per-hour East Croydon-Tulse Hill-Peckham-London Bridge service, without any warning to residents affected.

This year, despite promises to extend the South London Line (SLL) to Bellingham, Transport for London’s dastardly scheme to axe the SLL instead, and use its funding to support the underfunded East London line Extension 2 [westwards], has fortunately leaked out in advance (“We will save the axed rail service”, South London Press, May 22).

Unsurprisingly, residents have decided it is time to draw a line in the sand and fight the continuing erosion of rail services within South London.

Mike Colvin, Herne Hill