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Average commutes for every Surrey district show how journeys to work are getting longer; People in Tandridge are spending almost 50% longer getting to work than those in Spelthorne.

Byline: Dave Comeau

People inTandridgespend more time travelling to work than almost anywhere else in the UK - and the commute is getting longer.

That's according to figures published by theOffice for National Statistics, who asked people how long they spent on their morning commute. Those in Tandridge spent an average of 44 minutes traveling to work every day between October and December 2018.

If we assume the journey home takes a similar amount of time, that equals an average commute of one hour and 28 minutes. That's up from one hour and two minutes in 2017.

While the figures for the three-month period are not seasonally adjusted - in summer for instance, more people may choose to walk to work, reducing congestion and travel times - they do provide a year-on-year comparison and suggest people are spending longer in traffic or on a train.

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The average time spent commuting rose in seven Surrey authorities last year, while falling in just three.

Hayley Mitchell, who lives inCaterham-on-the-Hill, said while her journey hasn't increased in the last year, what should be a 30-minute back route drive via the B2031, A23 and A217, regularly takes close to an hour.

The 31-year-old, who drives to Nescot college inEwellwhere she works as an information and literary skills advisor, said: "The average for me is 40-50 minutes even with normal traffic but last week for example, when there was abig incident on the M25, it took me an hour.

"For a 12-mile journey I have to give myself an hour just in case there's a problem."

Planned A3, M3, M23 and M25 roadworks set to disrupt Surrey traffic this week

Rush hour crashes and congestion are becoming a more regular occurrence on Surrey's roads. On the M25, congestion at Junction 6 forGodstone, and between Junction 9 (Leatherhead) and Junction 10 (Wisley Interchange), has increased in recent years. The latter is the reason forthe proposed [pounds sterling]250 million upgrade of the interchange.

On the trains, it's a mixed bag for those travelling from Tandridge. Susan Sheen said her husband travels from Godstone to Reigate by train, changing at Redhill - a journey of less than 10 miles that can take 45 minutes as the train is sometimes held up by other services.

But on the East Grinstead line delays are widely reported to have improved significantlysince the Thameslink service was introduced.

After Tandridge, the borough with the largest commute time wasEpsom and Ewell, where people spent an average of one hour and 24 minutes travelling to and from work each day. That was equalled byElmbridge, and followed byWaverley(1h 22m).

Woking,Runnymede, andSurrey Heathall had an average commute time, to and from work, of one hour and 16 minutes. People inSpelthornespend the shortest time commuting in Surrey - just 30 minutes each way on average.

Looking across the UK, people in the London borough of Havering spend more time travelling to and from work than anywhere else - one hour and 46 minutes on average.

People who live in South Shropshire have the shortest journey to work - spending just 26 minutes each day on a commute.

The information below shows the average commutes in 2017 and 2018 in minutes.

Tandridge // 31 // 44

Epsom and Ewell // 48 // 42

Elmbridge // 41 // 42

Waverley // 36 // 41

Woking // 36 // 38

Runnymede // 29 // 38

Surrey Heath // 27 // 38

Mole Valley // 38 // 37

Guildford // 31 // 32

Spelthorne // 37 // 30

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Credit: Grahame Larter

Heavy traffic on the clockwise M25 is a regular occurrence which is making commutes longer
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Publication:Get Surrey (Surrey, England)
Geographic Code:4EUUK
Date:Jul 16, 2019
Words:585
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