Longer East London Line trains are here!

TfL's just-in-time delivery means that extra capacity on the East London Line should just about offset the extra space taken up by passengers' winter coats this Christmas. 

Monkeyboy sent us this release and these photos from the launch of the longer trains yesterday, which confirmed that five-carriage service will start next week. TfL says:

A special preview of the London Overground extended five-car train took place yesterday, with the first train now being held at New Cross Gate depot. 

Head of Programme Delivery, Hugh Lawson said. ‘It feels like such a great achievement to see the first longer train running on London Overground. Following the success of the completion of Silwood sidings, this was the next big milestone for the London Overground Capacity Improvement Programme. 

With London Overground becoming one of the UK’s most reliable services, with passenger numbers growing rapidly, TfL has had to extend London Overground trains from four to five carriages. Where necessary platforms across the network have been lengthened, existing depots upgraded, new stabling facilities built and alterations made to the signalling system to accommodate the longer trains. 

The first longer trains will be introduced on the Highbury & Islington to West Croydon/Clapham Junction line from November 2014, followed by the Richmond to Stratford line by the end of 2015. The train will come into passenger service from next week.

23 comments:

Liam said...

good news, I wonder what they are going to do with Cananda Water exit though?!? That place is only going to get worse, surely it is already becoming unsafe!

extra 2tph said...

There was a rumour that there will be another 2 trains per hour to Crystal Palace too. Can anyone confirm?

Doug said...

I can see Rotherhithe station from the platform at Canada Water. Rebuild the two stations together as one with future capacity in mind, then get those six car upgrades in

Ala said...

Hopefully no more or at least not as much disruption on weekends now. Next can we talk about the shambles that is the New Cross Gate station 'upgrade'?

max doom! said...

those two do seem irritatingly close.

Monkeyboy said...

don't know the deets but you need to be able to cope with 6 cars across the whole route. you are always constrained by the worse location for passenger flow, structural reasons, other services, points etc, etc.....

brockley pixie said...

Just as I'd started tweeting photos of the problems each morning. I doubt it will solve the problem, but it is at least a bit extra.... @BrockleyPixie

Gu Est said...

Mah, the scandal is at Brockley station. The installation of the elevator started exactly 1 year ago and still going...

Matt-Z said...

Planning for six-car services is already at an early stage apparently. As you know it's not an easy fix. There will be difficult decisions to be made around funding, as well as the three awkward-to-fix core stations with the shortest platforms. Then you have the trains. The software which runs the 378s only allows for five-car services. To add more would require it to rewritten from scatch, supposedly. Will the manufacturer be prepared to do this at a cost-effective rate for one customer when they are no longer taking orders for that type of train (Electrostar family) and want everyone to buy their new product instead (Aventra)? Comprehensive resignalling and ATO in the core section might turn out be a better investment, but the capacity on the section south of New Cross Gate wil still be constrained. As ever there's some decent debate about this over on London Reconnections.

Matt-Z said...

Apparently it is finished but undergoing H&S inspections / certification and should be open in time for Christmas.

anon said...

Surely we can get another couple of trains south of NXG each hour? Frequency is becoming as important as capacity of each train

terrencetrentderby said...

It's annoying, not sure about unsafe? But at least you don't get kettled in as per the poor suckers trying to get on the tube at London Bridge.

Matt-Z said...

Yes - I think the extra 2tph to Crystal Palace will happen, but any benefits will, in the short term at least, be offset by the London Bridge capacity reductions, not to mention population growth and increasing demand. An unfortunate consequence of trains bearing the roundel and railway lines appearing on the tube map is that people begin to expect tube-like service levels.

anon said...

When London Bridge is finished in 2018 will Brockley get more services or will it remain 4tph?

Matt-Z said...

Hard to tell but I think 4tph terminating is the current plan, with possibly 2tph running through the Thameslink core. Surely further platform extensions will see the 10-car services become 12-car at some point. Any increase in frequency on the slow lines will always be a trade off between the London Bridge and Overground services. Long term plans are apparently epxloring significant resignalling south of London Bridge towards Brighton. I'd suggest that is a long way off.

anon said...

6tph would be awesome, even more awesome if we get some direct connections to North London (Farringdon, West Hampstead, etc) That would be a real win for the area

ludicrous said...

From Twitter:
London Overground ‏@LDNOverground 1h1 hour ago
@pete_lozza Hi, I have just spoken to Control and was told the lift will not open until 2015. ^SW

Matt-Z said...

Don't bet your house on it. Only 4tph of terminators is confirmed, nowt else.

Don't forget there are 2tph from Crofton Park that already run direct through the Thameslink core. It's a long term ambition for that to become 4tph, but again don't plan on it happening any time soon.

Doug said...

To think that we were once the leaders of railway technology...

Jill said...

Longer trains, bigger stations... and still nowhere to have a pee when caught short. Less public toilets than in the victoria era.

Mr Wickham said...

Agreed re NCG. It looks like something a child had started to build out of Lego, making it up as he goes along to be as massive as possible, run out of pieces then be called down for his tea. Horrendous.

Dorothy (Dot) Commie said...

If these trains are anything like London Orbital don't be pleased, confident, happy-as-Larry or in any other way Rolling-in-Clover. The 'orbital' trains I regularly use are SOOOooo darned Slow-Slow-Stop-Stop-Slow.

DOH!!!

Monkeyboy said...

Side note, TfL have expressed 'concern' at the ELL performance and pointing the finger at Sothern.

https://www.tfl.gov.uk/cdn/static/cms/documents/rup-20141113-part-1-item05-managing-directors-report.pdf

"Punctuality on the East London Line is a concern however, particularly the impact of Southern's poor current performance on services south of New Cross Gate. NR performance is a key concern."

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