Subsectors

NetworkSouthEast.co.uk

This section gives details on 3 of the subsectors, but there was more.

Sussex Coast
Running services from Southampton and Portsmouth right through to Brighton, Croydon, Lewes, and London, the backbone of this subsector was definitely the Brighton line. The routes between London Victoria and Southampton and Portsmouth went via Brighton and the Coastway line (Although these services never called at Brighton, as a glance at a NSE, or even a Connex map will tell you), so they were slower than Solent and Wessex’s route, via Basingstoke. All of the routes operated by Sussex Coast were electrified, using the traditional 750 volt DC third-rail system. Class 423 4VEP and class 421 4CIG units worked most of the routes, but Sussex Coast did operate 19 Class 422 4BIG units (class 421’s with a buffet rather than a standard open coach) and these were normally worked in multiple with 421’s. Gatwick Airport was clearly one of the main traffic centres, but Thameslink also ran over this route. As a result of privatisation, Sussex coast was merged with a few other subsectors, including the Oxted Line which is detailed below, to become Network SouthCentral. This franchise was awarded to Connex Rail.

South London Lines
This subsector was essentially a commuter railway, with most of it’s routes around the City of London. South London Lines ran services from Victoria to London Bridge, Beckenham Junction, Croydon, Epson Downs, Dorking, Sutton and Tattenham Corner, and services from London Bridge to: Wimbledon, Sutton, Croydon and Caterham. One odd feature of this subsector though, was that it also contained the Oxted line (see below). The rolling stock used consisted mainly of Class 455’s and 456’s, but also of class 423’s and class 205/7 DEMU’s for the Oxted line. This subsector was also merged to become part of Network SouthCentral in the run-up to privatisation.

Oxted Line
Officially part of South London Lines, this ‘sub’ subsector consisted of the routes form the Brighton Main Line (It diverged at South Croydon) to East Grinstead and Ukfield. The line diverged at Hurst Green, with one section heading to East Grinstead and the other to Uckfield. Network SouthEast electrified the line to East Grinstead in September 1987, but the Uckfield portion was, and still is, non electrified. East Grinstead services were operated by class 423 4VEP’s, which ousted class 205/7 DEMU’s. The line to Uckfield though, remained class 205/7 operated. This route, due to privatisation, was merged with a few other NSE subsectors to become Network SouthCentral, which was franchised to Connex rail.

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