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This blog was originally written in 2019. I’ve revised it now in 2022 as the news has broken that the Southern Class 313s will be retired this year at the December timetable change, so catch them whilst you can.

Whilst the BR designed Class 313 EMUs have finally been withdrawn from service on the Great Northern routes out of Kings Cross and Moorgate and headed off to the scrapyard 19 of the Class still hold out on Southern metals, working ‘Coastaway’ services centered on Brighton. Numbered 313201-217 and 313219-20, the units were converted and renumbered from former Silverlink Class 313/1’s that had been used on the North London and Watford DC lines before being displaced by the new Bombardier Class 378s. The 313s were refurbished at Wabtec, Doncaster where they received alterations to the seating and a Passenger Information System, but no toilets, which has proved controversial as they replaced Class 377 units which did have them fitted.

The units began operating on Southern from the May 2010 timetable change, working Eastwards from Brighton to Lewes and Seaford and West to Littlehampton. They even operated as far afield as Portsmouth in the West and Ore in the East.

The Covid era saw various services cut which have never been reinstated so the need for the fleet decreased. Nowadays the only Easterly diagrams are to Seaford and Newhaven Harbour. All other diagrams are westwards from Brighton to Hove, Littlehampton, Barnham, Bognor and Portsmouth.

The very useful ‘Part-Time spotter’ WordPress blog publishes a list of the diagrams here and also supplies daily unit allocations. Why not give them a follow? There’s currently 13 diagrams for the 19 strong fleet.

Here’s a selection of images showing their area of operations.

The first of the class, 313201, stands at Shoreham-by-Sea whilst working a service to Brighton on the 8th June 2018. This unit has been repainted by its owners (Beacon rail) in the old BR blue-grey livery, albeit with doors that are DDA compliant.
On the 13th November 2015 313202 (left) and 313217 (right) pass at Lewes whilst working Coastaway services to the East of Brighton.
It’s the 1st July 2014 and 313203 pulls away from a stop at Emsworth (East of Havant) with a Brighton bound service.
313204 arrives in Brighton from Seaford on the 11th November 2015.
It’s the 7th June 2018 and 313204 is reversing in the turnback siding at West Worthing ready to return to Brighton. A number of services from Brighton terminate at this location.
313205 at rest in Brighton Lover’s Walk sidings on the 10th November 2015.
On the 1st July 2014, 313206 comes off the Bognor Regis branch at Barnham with a service to Brighton.
On the same day as the previous shot, 313208 sits in platform 1 at Littlehampton before working a service back to Brighton.
On the 30th June 2014, 313209 is between trips at the single platform terminus of the Seaford branch before heading back to Brighton.
A look at the interior of 313209, showing how the original seats have been replaced with typical Southern-style seats as used in their Electostar fleet.
On the 10th November 2015 313210 sits at Brighton’s wooden platform 8 before working along the coast to Seaford with an early evening service.
313212 leaves Hove with a service to Brighton. The lines off to the left are the Cliftonville spur which carry traffic North towards London, avoiding Brighton station. 10th November 2015.
On the same day and looking in the opposite direction to the previous picture, 313213 pulls out of Hove station with a Brighton service.
It’s the 30th June 2014 and 313214 (left) and 313208 sit in platforms 2 and 1 which are used exclusively by trains heading to Hove and the West.
Another view of platforms 1 and 2 taken on the same day as the previous picture, only this time the units are 313203 (left) and 313215 (right).
A shot of the promotional branding applied to 313215.
On the 24th July 2019 313216 calls at Angmering (West of Brighton) with the service back to the South coast town.
313217 leaves Hastings and prepares to enter the tunnel towards St Leonards Warrior Square whilst working a Brighton service on the 12th November 2015.
Before Covid the 313s used to get as far East as the end of the 3rd rail at Ore on the line from Hastings to Ashford. Here’s 313217 after reversal at Ore with a service back to Brighton on the 12th November 2015.
313219 rounds the curve past the old goods yard which in now a housing estate as it approaches Goring-by-Sea station from the West on the 8th June 2018.
On the 30th June 2014 313220 arrives at Newhaven Town whilst working a service to Seaford.

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