Maidstone East Line

Maidstone East Line
Maidstone East Line

Swanley to Ashford (via Maidstone East) Line, shown with other railway lines in Kent.
Type Suburban rail, Heavy rail
System National Rail
Status Operational
Locale Kent
South East England
Owner Network Rail
Operator(s) Southeastern
Track gauge 1,435 mm (4 ft 8 12 in) Standard gauge
[v · d · e]Maidstone East Line (Swanley to Ashford)
Continuation to left Station on transverse track Unknown BSicon "ABZ3lg" Continuation to right
Chatham Main Line
18m 60ch
Unknown BSicon "AKRZ-UKu"
Enter and exit tunnel
Eynsford Tunnel
19m 36ch
Unknown BSicon "eHST"
Lullingstone (never opened)
Eynsford Viaduct
Bridge over water
River Darent
20m 32ch
Stop on track
22m 52ch
Stop on track
24m 06ch
Station on track
24m 53ch
Unknown BSicon "AKRZ-UKo"
Bat & Ball spur
Track turning from left Junction to right
Bat & Ball
Station on track Straight track
SEML (To London)
Continuation backward Straight track Straight track
Junction from left Track turning right Straight track
Station on track Straight track
SEMLTo Tunbridge Wells
Continuation forward Straight track
26m 79ch
Stop on track
29m 52ch
Station on track
Borough Green & Wrotham
34m 61ch
Station on track
West Malling
35m 64ch
Stop on track
East Malling
37m 43ch
Stop on track
Continuation to left Unknown BSicon "KRZo" Continuation to right
Medway Valley Line
Bridge over water
River Medway
39m 76ch
Station on track
Maidstone East
Enter and exit tunnel
Wheeler Street Tunnel (358 yds)
42m 59ch
Station on track
Unknown BSicon "AKRZ-UKu"
High Speed 1
Continuation to left Unknown BSicon "KRZu" Continuation to right
45m 02ch
Stop on track
47m 36ch
Stop on track
49m 11ch
Stop on track
53m 11ch
Stop on track
Unknown BSicon "AKRZ-UKo"
55m 61ch
Unknown BSicon "eHST"
Hothfield closed 1959
LCDR Ashford
Unknown BSicon "eHST"
High Speed 1
Continuation to left Unknown BSicon "ABZdg" Continuation to right
59m 19ch
Station on track
Ashford International
High Speed 1
Continuation to left Unknown BSicon "ABZdf" Continuation to right
Ashford to Ramsgate
Straight track
(via Canterbury West) line
Marshlink Line
Continuation forward

The Maidstone East Line diverges from the Chatham Main Line at Swanley Junction (after Swanley), proceeds down the Darenth valley (via a Tunnel to Eynsford) where the line diverges off the Sevenoaks line (via Bat and Ball) at Otford. It continues via Borough Green & Wrotham to Maidstone East, which leads onto Ashford and on to east Kent. The line is double track throughout.

The line from Swanley to Maidstone East was electrified using the third rail system in 1939. The section between Maidstone East and Ashford was electrified in 1961.


The line was built by the London, Chatham and Dover Railway from their first line (the Chatham Main Line). Upon the creation of the South Eastern and Chatham Railway the original Ashford terminus was closed in 1899 and services diverted to the South Eastern Railway's Ashford station. The line was electrified in 1939 (750V DC third rail) to Maidstone East by the Southern Railway prior to World War Two. Electrification between Maidstone East and Ashford was completed in 1961 under the BR 1955 Modernisation Plan.


Services on the line are run by Southeastern. Services run to London Victoria and Ashford, with some peak services to Bedford via London Blackfriars.

Due to its place between the two main lines through Kent (South Eastern Main Line and Chatham Main Line), the line has comparatively infrequent services and longer journey times.


  • Yonge, John (October 1994). Gerald Jacobs. ed. Railway Track Diagrams - Volume 5 England, South and London Underground (1st edition ed.). Exeter: Quail Map Co.. ISBN 1-8983-1907-3. 
  • Yonge, John (2002). Gerald Jacobs. ed. Railway Track Diagams - Book 5: England South and London Underground (Quail Track Plans) (2nd edition ed.). Exeter: Quail Map Company. ISBN 1-8983-1952-9. OCLC 55557335. 

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