Posted 23rd December 2011 | 5 Comments

Old Waterloo International platform to be used by SWT

Picture of former Waterloo International station

The international platforms at Waterloo have been out of use for four years. The train in the foreground is standing at platform 22. Platform 20 is out of sight, on the far right.

ONE of the platforms at the former Waterloo International station in London is to be used again from 2014.

The operator has also announced that it is to lease 60 Juniper vehicles which were formerly used by Gatwick Express, to provide more capacity on several Waterloo suburban services.

SWT said around 8,000 extra peak-time passengers will be able to travel into Waterloo every morning when eight car trains are lengthened to 10 vehicles.

Services from Windsor, Weybridge (via Staines,) and Hounslow (via both Richmond and Brentford) will be lengthened. Two additional Reading-Waterloo trains will run each way, together with an additional morning peak Hounslow-Waterloo service.

The additional trains will use platform 20 at the former Waterloo International Terminal, which will come back into use from 2014.

A 'limited number' of mainline trains between London Waterloo and Portsmouth, Southampton and Alton will also be lengthened by cascading rolling stock.

The international platforms at Waterloo have been out of use since Eurostar transferred its operations to St Pancras International in November 2007. There have been several calls for them to be used again, but one complication is that the circulating area below them was designed for international traffic, with separated flows for arrivals and departures.

This arrangement is unnecessary for commuters, and some changes were made to Platform 20 three years ago to prepare it for domestic use, although the future of the remaining platforms, 21-24, remains unclear.

The Department for Transport said: 'Network Rail is continuing to progress plans to make further use of Waterloo and Waterloo International to cope with future demand.'

Reader Comments:

Views expressed in submitted comments are that of the author, and not necessarily shared by Railnews.

  • Melvyn Windebank, Canvey Island, Essex, England

    Well I sup[pose this rate of progress will keep the future return of The Railway Children as an annual event in Waterloo Station!!

  • Lutz, London

    Again, funding is a key problem at Waterloo. The outline plans require around £1B of private sector money but this has not been forthcoming. In addition, several of the proposals would require the partial demolition of the international platforms and station. To make the most of the expansion at Waterloo, additional works would be required at Clapham, Battersey, and as far out as Barnes on the Windsor lines. The plans have been further complicated by the recognition that they would not really address the capacity problems for the medium to longer term.

  • Martin Hill, Dorset, UK

    It's taken over 4 years for something to be done to relieve the platform congestion at Waterloo. Even now, only one platform is proposed for domestic traffic. Whatever the obstacles this is an unacceptable waste of resources.

  • Joel Kosminsky, London, Britain

    Not madness - the International platforms are built for different types of train and are a non-standard distance from the track and at a different level to currently acceptable boarding standards. It's not just the platforms but also the signalling - Waterloo International signals are designed for single-line access for quarter-mile long trains - the sections and route paths need reconstructing. There's also a gateline layout problem and a safety issue with peak crowd flows to and from platform 20. The real 'crime' is people not doing anything about this earlier.

  • Steve Alston, Crewe

    3 years to get an (already built) single platform into use? Madness.