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Night Tube - Good News or Subterranean Blues?

24 May 2016 | Updated 01 January 1970

The new Mayor of London Sadiq Khan has confirmed that the much delayed Night Tube services will launch on August 19.

Central and Victoria lines to go live first, with the Piccadilly, Jubilee and Northern lines to follow in the autumn. The Mayor claims this will create around 2,000 permanent jobs for Londoners supported; night-time journeys in London will be reduced by an average of 20 minutes and some by more than an hour; and the move will boost the economy to the tune of £360 million.

The Night Tube will mean 24-hour weekend services for the first time in London’s history. Shift-workers who currently have to rely on night buses or mini-cabs to get back to outer London after the Tube shuts down will benefit alongside the revellers claimed Khan despite the service only operating on one night/early morning during the traditional working week.

The start of Night Tube services on the Jubilee, Northern and Piccadilly lines will follow in two separate phases later in the autumn as new Tube drivers complete their training and final preparations are made. Around 200 part-time drivers are currently taking part in a 14-week training programme to make the Night Tube a reality.

Khan, said: “I have made getting the Night Tube up and running a priority and London Underground has now confirmed that services on the first two lines will launch on 19 August.”



Demand for night-time travel is on the rise. Late night Tube usage is increasing at double the rate of daytime trips and demand for travel on night buses has risen by over 170 per cent since 2000.

To meet the expected demand for Night Tube services, there will be six trains per hour through central London on all Night Tube lines between 00:30 and 05:30. This will rise to eight trains per hour on the Northern line to meet demand at busy stations between Leicester Square and Camden Town.

London will join a handful of other international cities, including New York and Berlin, which also provide metro services through the night.

London’s Transport Commissioner, Mike Brown, said: “It is good news for London that the first ever all-night Tube service will be ready on 19 August. More than half a million people use the Tube after 10pm on Fridays and Saturdays. The introduction of the Night Tube will support London's businesses and jobs, is a historic step in our modernisation of the Underground and our work to support London’s economic growth."



Introducing a Night Tube service forms part of a major programme to modernise the Tube with stations, trains, track and signalling being updated or replaced to provide more capacity.

Redevelopment work to increase capacity at key stations and to make them step-free, is underway at a number of stations including Victoria, Tottenham Court Road and Bond Street. More than half of London Underground's 270 stations have now been modernised or refurbished, with improvements such as tactile strips, better CCTV and help points, electronic information displays in ticket halls and on platforms, and improved seating and lighting.

Picture: The Night Tube is coming - but only for Fridays and Saturdays

Article written by Brian Shillibeer | Published 24 May 2016


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