The Herne Hill Society has been involved in a joint approach – co-ordinated by the Camberwell Society, and also involving the Dulwich Society and the SE5 Forum – to press the station operator GTR to investigate measures to ease the problems.
The station was redesigned and upgraded to ensure accessibility in a programme that concluded in 2013. But contrary to the expectations of many residents and station users, the redesign left it with only one entrance / exit, with the temporary access from Windsor Walk on the north side of the station removed after the access bridge and lifts were completed.
The works were completed just before the introduction of the TfL London Overground service linking Clapham, Peckham and Dalston. This new service has resulted in the passenger flows through the station increasing by over a half from 3.7 million in 2012/13, to 5.6 million in 2014/15. The station is now one of the busiest in south-east London with a mix of local residents commuting, interchanging passengers, and staff and visitors travelling to King’s and Maudsley hospitals.
A meeting was held between the local societies and representatives of GTR one evening in early June. All agreed there was a congestion problem, with arriving and departing passengers crowding the ramp and stairs, especially when two trains arrived at the same time. While the staff do their best to keep passengers moving through the ticket gates, passengers queuing to buy tickets add to the crowding in the entrance. A proposal for a one-way passenger flow system was generally considered both unworkable, and to need extra staff. There was strong agreement that the best solution was to re-introduce the previous temporary entrance from Windsor Walk as a permanent feature, with the ticket gates remotely monitored from the main concourse. The challenge is now to build the consensus between the various interested parties, to develop a costed design, and to look down the back of the various corporate sofas for the money needed. Officially, the capital investment plans are fixed for the next few years, and the next rolling programme is some way off, but it is hoped that there is scope to combine funds from the operator, perhaps National Rail, and possibly TfL.
‘Station Hosts’ at Denmark Hill, Tulse Hill and Loughborough Junction Stations
Following widespread objections to their plans to close 83 ticket offices, GTR has softened their attitude… slightly.
At Denmark Hill, the ticket office is now planned to stay open 7am to 10am, and be replaced by ‘Station Hosts’ at other times (staff near the ticket machines, able to issue tickets, most importantly for ‘add on’ journeys for journeys starting within the London Travelcard zone and needing an extension – not currently available from ticket machines).
At Loughborough Junction and Tulse Hill stations, however, the ticket offices are still slated for complete closure, to be replaced by ‘Station Host’ staff available near the ticket machines.
It remains to be seen how these revised proposals are greeted by staff, and how ‘soft launch’ pilot schemes work out.
Townley Road Quietway consultation
The SUSTRANS Consultation on the proposed Turney Road/Carlton Avenue ‘Quietway’ has not gone down well… Quite extensive local layout changes are being put forward, with ‘do-nothing’ not an option.
North Dulwich Triangle CPZ
The CPZ was implemented in April 2016.
The Consultation on the CPZ was reported at the September 2015 Dulwich Community Council, and the proposals for a 12:00-2:00pm CPZ were endorsed. A majority of responding residents in the NDT were in favour; the residents of Sunray Gardens estate were reluctantly in favour, if the NDT and Denmark Hill areas both expressed a wish to have a CPZ.
The parking in Village Way near North Dulwich Station is outside the zone.