East Sussex railway landslip disrupts train services

Engineers at site
Image caption Engineers are monitoring the site and carrying out tests

Rail passengers are facing disruption for at least a week after a landslip damaged the track in East Sussex.

Network Rail said trains were still running on the route between Eastbourne and Lewes but a 5mph speed restriction was in place for safety reasons.

The company said the restriction allowed trains to continue to run but did also mean services had been amended.

Engineers will have to build a temporary road to carry out repairs.

Derek Butcher, South East geotechnical manager, 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."

He said once the road was in place, engineers could begin work to bring the railway back up to full speed.

He also said Network Rail staff were digging boreholes into the railway to look deeper into the embankment, which dated back to construction of the line in 1846.

Network Rail said it was likely the speed restriction would remain in place for at least the rest of this week until a definitive timescale could be put in place.

Southern rail, which operates services on the line, said the service between Ashford International in Kent and Eastbourne and Brighton had been amended until Friday.

The rail firm, which operates through Sussex, Surrey and parts of Kent and Hampshire, has advised passengers to check the Southern website before travelling.

Image caption The landslip happened between Eastbourne and Lewes
Image caption A 5mph speed restriction is in place for safety reasons

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