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Last updated: 23:43

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Brighton Main Line Improvement Project

There will be changes to services on several weekends through to early May 2019.

There will be closures on certain weekends as shown below:

Brighton Mainline Weekend Blocks Summary Table image - March to May 2019

Note: Sunday 5 May (closure is early morning between 1.20-9.30am)

This will mean changes to train services across the Southern, Gatwick Express and Thameslink networks and significantly longer journey times for some passengers. No trains will serve the following stations:

  • Balcombe
  • Haywards Heath
  • Wivelsfield
  • Burgess Hill
  • Hassocks
  • Preston Park
  • Plumpton
  • Cooksbridge

The only trains between Three Bridges and Brighton, Hove or Worthing will be diverted via Horsham and Littlehampton and take up to 60 minutes longer. There will also be no direct trains between London and Lewes or Eastbourne. Services on some routes will be busier. The map below shows the general service arrangements.


What is the travel advice? 

If you do wish to travel, we will ensure that you can, but please note you will need to allow extra time for your journey.

Advice will vary depending on the journey you are making as shown below. If you are travelling on affected routes:

  • Note that non-folding cycles cannot be carried on replacement buses
  • If you require assistance, please book in advance at
  • Unless detailed below, please plan your journey by visiting and using the journey planner

Travelling at weekends

A frequent bus service has been arranged to run on the following routes: 

  • Three Bridges - Brighton non-stop
  • Three Bridges - Brighton calling at Balcombe, Haywards Heath, Wivelsfield, Burgess Hill, Hassocks, Preston Park
  • Three Bridges - Lewes non-stop
  • Haywards Heath - Lewes calling at  Wivelsfield, Plumpton, Lewes

A direct train will also run between Brighton and Three Bridges / Gatwick Airport / London Victoria via Littlehampton on a diverted route

Journey times will be extended. Click here to plan your journey 


How should I plan my journey?

Please plan your journey by visiting using the planner. For some journeys, it may be necessary to add a “via” station to get the recommended route, details of this are listed above

How should I check my journey on the day of travel?

Information regarding any on-the-day disruption or unplanned alterations, including travel advice will be available via the following sources:

I require travel assistance, what should I do?

Where replacement buses are running, the majority of these will be fully accessible to enable you to get to your destination. Staff will be readily available to assist you with your journey.

We recommend passengers let us know 24 hours before they plan to travel so we can be on hand to help and recommend the best route for you to take. Passengers can do this by filling in our assistance booking form online or Call us on: 0800 138 1016. Textphone: 0800 138 1018 SMS Text: 07860 034 269.

Why are there no published timetables for the bus services?

Times are shown in on-line journey planners to allow you to plan your journey. We advise you to arrive at your origin station in plenty of time for the departure time to allow you to board the next available bus.

Buses will operate every few minutes on some routes; the exact times may vary depending on demand and traffic conditions on the day.

Can I take my bicycle on replacement buses?

It will not be possible to take non-folding bicycles on rail replacement buses.

Why are these works taking place?

The planned improvement work on the Brighton Main Line is a key part of a £300 million government-funded programme to tackle delay hotspots and boost the reliability of the railway in the south east, including the expanded Thameslink network. Click here to find out more