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Elephant rail station: Thameslink urges passengers to prepare for shopping centre closure

London SE1 website team

Rail company bosses have warned passengers that they could face a longer walk to catch their train at Elephant & Castle when the shopping centre closes later this month.

Elephant rail station: Thameslink urges passengers to prepare for shopping centre closure
The link from the Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre to the mainline rail station will close on 24 September
Elephant rail station: Thameslink urges passengers to prepare for shopping centre closure
New departure screens were installed at the Elephant Road entrance last month

After the Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre closes on Thursday 24 September, Elephant & Castle Railway Station will only be accessible from the Elephant Road side.

In recent weeks a number of changes have been made to the station to prepare for the closure of the link footbridge from the upper level of the shopping centre.

These include the relocation of Oyster and contactless card readers, the removal of bicycle racks and the installation of new train departure screens just inside the Elephant Road entrance.

Some changes have also been made to the pavement on Elephant Road to prepare for the higher number of pedestrians expected to use this route to and from the station, with dropped kerbs removed.

Thameslink's customer services director Jenny Saunders said: "The shopping centre is the usual route for our passengers to reach the Underground.

"Its closure may mean it takes people a bit longer to walk but we'll have staff on hand to help passengers find their way."

In a statement, the developers of the shopping centre site said: "As part of the redevelopment of Elephant & Castle town centre we are creating a new level access into the train station from the new town centre. This will replace the existing bridge which currently links the station with the shopping centre.

"The current link bridge between the station and the shopping centre cannot remain open during the redevelopment because all existing buildings on site will be demolished to make way for construction. There is no means to maintain a route through the existing shopping centre.

"We will continue to work closely with Govia Thameslink Railway to ensure there is minimal disruption for commuters during the closure.

"Once the development is completed commuters will have new and improved level access into the train station from the new town centre from the ground floor of the development."

There are no plans to remedy one long-standing deficiency of Elephant & Castle's mainline station – the lack of step-free access to the platforms.

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