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You are here: Home > Your journey > Plan your journey > Waterloo and South West upgrade

Waterloo and South West upgrade

Plan ahead if travelling in August

On all days between Saturday 5 to Monday 28 August 2017

While major route upgrade work takes place at London Waterloo, there will be a severely reduced South West Trains service on many routes. This will increase passenger numbers on many Southern and Thameslink routes and may change the route we recommend you take for your journey. If possible, you are advised to avoid travelling at peak times and to allow longer for your journey.

Reduced northbound Southern service at Clapham Junction during the evening peak

There will be a reduced number of services calling at Clapham Junction towards London Victoria between 16:00 and 20:00 on Mondays to Fridays as certain services will not call at Clapham Junction to prevent overcrowding at the station. In general, only Mainline services (those that normally run non-stop between East Croydon and Clapham Junction) will be affected and Metro services will call as normal, however please check for own journey before you travel by visiting nationalrail.co.uk and using the journey planner.

Many Southern and Thameslink services will be busier

With the significant reduction in South West Trains services. The following routes are expected to be considerably busier than usual as passengers who usually use London Waterloo seek alternative routes:

  • Thameslink or Southern services between Wimbledon and London via Tulse Hill
  • Southern services between Southampton and Portsmouth to London
  • Southern services between Dorking / Guildford and London via Epsom / Sutton

All Southern and Thameslink services to and from London are expected to be busier than usual. You are advised to allow extra time for their journeys and to avoid travelling at peak times where possible. Queuing systems will be in place at some locations.

Clapham Junction station will be very busy

It may be necessary to restrict access at Clapham Junction and you may have to queue to enter the station or to board connecting services. You are strongly advised to travel outside peak times from this station. If interchanging please consider alternative routes.

Avoid interchanging at Clapham Junction

You are strongly advised to avoid interchanging at Clapham Junction. South West Trains services at this station will be very limited so journeys may be considerably extended. Queuing systems are expected to be in place even if you aren’t interchanging with South West Trains services.

There are alternative routes between most stations that avoid Clapham Junction. Use the National Rail journey planner as detailed below to plan journeys to avoid changing at Clapham Junction.

Alternative routes if you normally change at Clapham Junction for services to London Waterloo (and vice versa)

Please consider travelling on services to London Bridge and changing for Southeastern services to/from Waterloo East*. Alternatively, use Thameslink services to Blackfriars which is a short walk from London Bridge. *Please note that there will be no Southeastern service at London Bridge, Cannon Street, Waterloo East or Charing Cross from 26 August until 2 September due to major route improvement work.

Alternative routes if you normally change at Clapham Junction for South West Trains services away from London or for London Overground services

Services on all South West Trains routes from Clapham Junction (including those away from London) will be reduced and interchange with London Overground services at Clapham Junction will take longer.

There are alternative routes between most stations that avoid Clapham Junction. Use the National Rail journey planner as detailed below to plan journeys to avoid changing at Clapham Junction.

How to plan a journey and get fares so that you avoid Clapham Junction

To plan your journey to avoid Clapham Junction, visit nationalrail.co.uk and use the journey planner. Fill in the details of your journey and click on ‘more options, railcards and people’. In this section, under ‘Route’, choose the option ‘Do not change at Clapham Junction’ to see suggested routes and fares.

Major work at London Bridge on all days between 26 August and 2 September

There will be no Southeastern services calling at London Bridge, Waterloo East or Charing Cross between Saturday 26 August and Saturday 2 September because of major route upgrade work. Although Southern and Thameslink services aren’t altered because of this work, trains on many routes are expected to be busier. You should allow extra time for your journeys and travel outside busy times if possible. More information is available here

Plan ahead and check back before you travel

We will keep you advised here if anything changes and it is vital for you to continue to do so. Arrangements may change, especially considering the ongoing driver overtime ban affecting Southern services. You should plan your route well in advance by visiting nationalrail.co.uk and using the journey planner, noting bulletins (an exclamation mark in a triangle) attached to affected services which will advise of any alternative, less busy and easier routes. See above for tips on how to plan a journey that avoids changing at Clapham Junction. If you plan to interchange with other operators affected by this work, visit the dedicated pages on their website for more info:

Watch this film for more information on the work taking place at Waterloo.