Greenwich passengers face a nightmare journey home today after Southeastern put together a revised timetable in order to cope with the snowfall and freezing temperatures.
A statement on the company website says:
"Freezing temperatures, snow and ice have been forecast over the next few days. To ensure we’re able to run the best service possible in these weather conditions a revised Metro and Mainline timetable will be in place from Wednesday 6 January 2010."
Tonight's final Southeastern service out of Cannon Street to Dartford, calling at Greenwich, Maze Hill, Westcombe Park and Charlton will depart at 19:47.
The news has angered many passengers, especially as the snow on the ground is not yet as bad as has been predicted.
Local MP, Nick Raynsford, described the Southeastern's train services as the "weakest link" in the local transport network and accused railway bosses of failing to learn the lessons of last February's snow.
In a letter to Charles Horton, the Managing Director of Southeastern Trains, Raynsford writes:
“This morning there were no problems with buses running through Greenwich & Woolwich; the DLR was running without delays and the Jubilee line through North Greenwich was running without incident. I understand from TFL that de-icing trains were run on overground tube lines to lessen the impact of the weather on the underground network.
You will, therefore, understand my dismay at hearing that trains run by Southeastern through the borough on Metro services were at a frequency of two per hour during rush hour despite the relatively light snow fall in South East London on the night of the 5th January. I am also quite taken aback to hear from Mike Gibson at Southeastern that the last train to Greenwich tonight will depart at 19.51.
Given that other forms of transport were running without problems it is unfortunate that overground rail services were the weak link in the network. Following the disruption from the snow last February I would have hoped that appropriate contingency plans would be in place to deal with snowfall to keep the network running. Given that the cold snap is forecast to continue for some time I hope that Southeastern will put a plan into place to keep the network running throughout the winter.”