Heathrow Southern Railway Limited reacts to publication of Government proposals on Heathrow Airport expansion

Heathrow Southern Railway Limited (HSRL) – the independent venture set up to transform the rail network serving Britain’s busiest airport – has reacted to today’s publication by the UK Department for Transport (DfT) of its Airports National Policy Statement (NPS) and response to the House of Commons Transport Committee’s report on the draft NPS.

HSRL Chief Executive Graham Cross said:

“This is a major development for our ambition to create a transformational rail link between Heathrow and the south.  We welcome the importance attached to southern rail access by the UK Secretary of State for Transport in his statement to the House of Commons.  We will now carefully study the documents published by the DfT and closely follow the remaining stages of its consideration by Parliament.”

For further information visit  www.heathrowrail.com  or contact Mark Walker on 01733 767244 or 07742 925753.

Notes for editors:

  1. The UK Government’s revised draft Airports National Policy Statement required Heathrow Airport Limited to “maximise the proportion of journeys made to the airport by public transport, cycling and walking to achieve a public transport mode share of at least 50% by 2030, and at least 55% by 2040 for passengers..[and]…details of how it will achieve a 25% reduction from the current baseline of all staff car trips by 2030, and a reduction of 50% by 2040 from 2017 levels”.These conditions would be legally binding on HAL.
  2. In a report on the draft NPS published on 23 March 2018, the House of Commons Transport Committee noted that schemes such as Southern and Western Rail Access are essential for a two-runway Heathrow even before a three-runway airport with an extra 50% capacity is developed.  Members recommended a written commitment of policy support for Southern and Western Rail Access be made by the Government in the NPS, along with the provision of clarity around funding and the timeline for delivery, which schemes are needed to support current two-runway operations at Heathrow and which are needed to support an expanded Heathrow. The Committee also called for the UK Department for Transport’s updated surface access modelling to be published so that the likely impact on road and rail congestion of a new North West Runway at Heathrow scheme is known.
  3. HSRL intends to create fast, easy and relaxing rail access to Heathrow Airport by building 8 miles of rail infrastructure from the west end of the existing Terminal 5 station.  Electric trains will operate between Heathrow and London’s Waterloo terminus via Clapham Junction, Putney, Hounslow, Twickenham, Richmond, Staines and other intermediate stations.  Waterloo East and Clapham Junction will make Heathrow accessible from Kent and Sussex with just one change of train. The HSR infrastructure also provides a direct to the Airport from Surrey and Hampshire along with a fast link from these areas non-airport passengers to London Paddington and Old Oak Common (for HS2 and the Elizabeth Line).
  4. The best rail journey times projected by HSRL are 16 minutes from Woking to Heathrow, 26 minutes from Guildford to Heathrow and 6 minutes from Staines to Heathrow.
  5. HSRL forecasts that its new railway will remove 86 million car kilometres from the road network each year.
  6. HSRL forecasts that the new rail link will be used by 33,000 passengers per day and could be open as early as 2025.
  7. HSRL is participating in the DfT’s Market Sounding exercise which is exploring the appetite for the market developing proposals and sharing the risk of the development process for a Southern Rail Link to Heathrow (SRLtH).