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Raynes Park Association News

Raynes Park Station - Update

Discussions between Network Rail (NR) and the Raynes Park Association (RPA) – September 2018 

Responses from Connie Banda NR 28 September 2018 with responses from Chris Larkman RPA in italics

Matters discussed, Enchroaching Shrubs, The state of the Footbridge, Wooden Fencing, Embankment Planting, Japanese Knotweed, Kiss & Ride, Land Transfer


1) Encroaching shrubs - an order has been placed for the removal of vegetation from the station roof and around the station building. I await a confirmed date when the work will be carried out.  There are alsotwo places where vegetation creeps at the rate of about 1 foot per annum – places I showed you on our walkabout:  a) leaving the main station entrance on the north, turn left and to towards Waitrose – at the point where cars enter the Waitrose car park, NR vegetation needs serious attention.  b) Again on the northside, going the other direction i.e. to the right, passing the traffic bridge and to the north of the ‘Skew Arch’ i.e. the pedestrian and cycle bridge – on the left of the entrance to the bridge.  Again, the vegetation needs cutting back.  

2) Footbridge – a coat of paint and station entrance - we understand the concerns you raise about the condition of the bridge. Network Rail is publicly funded and does not have any funding now to repaint the bridge given other safety critical priorities across our route.   That is not to say that we would not be supportive if a third party, such as a local authority or developer wished to fund improvements and we would be delighted to work with them. This would require us to plan a possession for the aesthetics work on the bridge to be carried out safely.  We should also mention that with Crossrail2, we would see a new station delivered.  Discussions about the station are being led by South Western Railway.  See notes below.

3) Wooden Fence on Platform 1 - a possession to remove the fence had been planned but due to other safety critical issues that affect the railway, this is now being re-planned, the team is working hard to find another suitable possession to carry out the requested work. We are pleased that this is on your ‘to do’ list and we look forward to its removal at your earliest convenience. 

4) Embankments and planting regime - clearing the embankment will be done when there is a possession in place.  For areas where our maintenance team can work with a line block, then we may not have to wait for the possession.  The local authority will need to place more bins with signage as previously suggested in March when our contractors removed the litter thrown over by people waiting at the bus stop.  We will write to the council to request it installs bins. On the point of planting on our embankment - the maintenance team will report back after inspecting as this area raises a safety concern given the embankment is steep and close to the road and bus stop. The site is vulnerable to erosion issues.  The two embankments in question are a) From Elite cars eastwards to the road bridge on the north of the railway and b) from the southern station entrance to the road bridge, it would be helpful if you got notes from Paula Williams (our previous NR contact).  She will confirm that no possession is required to undertake work on these embankments.  A planting programme was agreed and initiated.  This included establishing terracing which enables planting and safe access.  (All necessary checks about erosion and steepness were addressed at that stage.) The programme ceased because NR decided to discontinue using the original company and failed to replace it.  See also notes below.  (There should be no safety concerns about any work being undertaken and the closeness to either bus stops of roads – this was not previously an issue.)

5) Japanese Knotweed transferring from NR land to public space - we raised an order to have the area inspected first, upon inspection, the maintenance team added the site to our treatment programme.  I attach our treatment programme document explaining how Network Rail deals with Japanese Knotweed.  In summary, the plant is treated twice a year from April to September; the treatment sometimes last up to 5 years.  We have noticed that in the past 10 days the JK has indeed been cut back and presumably treated.  We are pleased action has been taken and that treatment will now continue for as long as needed.  

6)  Kiss & Ride – you will need to raise this with South Western Railway, as they are the station tenant and would be responsible for introducing and funding for such a scheme. You can contact them at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.In fact, this project is part of a S106 agreement between Merton Council and the Rainbow Estate as part of the planning permission for developing the estate.  NR are party to this agreement and have agreed the plans.  However, because of the uncertainties about CrossRail2, the development is on hold and in consequence so are the Kiss & Ride plans.  We remain concerned about the state of this piece of land and would want to see it used properly.  Indeed, on our site visit today, we noticed an amount of fly-tipping at the entrance to the estate.  We have notified the station manager of this.  

7) Transfer of two pieces of land - About your questions about the land transfers to London Borough of Merton, I am awaiting further details and hope to update you next week.  We can confirm we have now learned from LB Merton that final consent to the transfer of these pieces of land is now imminent.      


There are three key areas which the RPA wants to progress with you: 

1) Embankments.  Raynes Park exists as a town because of the railway.  The railway dominates the town, particularly because it is high up on embankments.  We therefore need the planting regime (on the above-mentioned embankments) reinitiated.  Because of neglect over the past few years, a significant initial piece of work will be required.  Thereafter we estimate that 4 people working for 3 hours 4 times a year should suffice for one of the embankments.  We would be happy to arrange a partnership with NR and a local business (or businesses) to sponsor this work.  (They could be permitted to erect a sign to indicate their sponsorship.). We suggest we work with NR to look at setting up such a scheme, costing it up.  

2) Footbridge.  We are very keen to have this footbridge painted. (This was indeed promised to us a while back.). It is an eyesore as seen approaching the station from either side.  We would be happy to look to local businesses to contribute say on a 50/50 basis with NR.   Again, we suggest this project is costed. 

3) Front of Station.  As with the footbridge, the station entrance (i.e. as seen approaching the main entrance from the road) is a total mess.  It should not cost a vast sum to make this look half decent.  The London Borough of Merton has spent a considerable sum on improving Raynes Park over the years.  We’re now asking NR to spend a much smaller amount tidying its own land. Again, if needed, we would be prepared to see if we could obtain a contribution from local businesses.  This also needs to be costed.  

Tony Edwards, Place, Design & Planning, has produced a helpful document spelling out the improvements needed (document previously circulated). 


We would like to meet with relevant managers at NR to further these three points and to discover a way forward.



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