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TRAIN STRIKES LONDON: TfL advise planning ahead to make the most of the busy festive period


Image credit: TfL

Transport for London (TfL) are advising customers to plan journeys ahead so they can make the most of the busy festive period in the capital this year.


Using resources like TfL's Journey Planner or the TfL Go app will help customers avoid closures caused by planned essential works or by national rail industrial action across the transport network and navigate any last-minute service changes.

The majority of TfL services will be running over Christmas and New Year, but there will be no service on the majority of public transport on Christmas Day and no services on some parts of the network on Boxing Day. Night Tube and Night Overground services will not operate on Saturday 24 December.


Apart from planned closures, services will run all night on New Year’s Eve and the Mayor’s annual fireworks display will take place for the first time since 2019. Given the impact of the pandemic on TfL’s finances, customers will have to pay to travel on New Year’s Eve, as was the case last year.

Victoria Coach Station, Santander Cycles, rental e-scooters, and taxi and private hire services will be available throughout the festive period including on Christmas Day. Walking and cycling routes will be largely uninterrupted aside from New Year’s Eve when roads in certain areas of central London will be closed, some Santander Cycle docking stations will be out of service, and some bridges will be closed to pedestrians to facilitate the Mayor’s fireworks display. The IFS London Cable Car is open throughout the festive period with the exception of Christmas Day.


Winter Wonderland has returned once again as a ticketed event and will continue to be open to the public until 2 January 2023. For a quieter journey, customers can travel to and from Bond Street, which is within a 15-minute walk of Hyde Park, or Victoria and Paddington, which are within a 20-minute walk of Hyde Park.


Essential engineering works will impact Elizabeth line services over the festive period and travel to Heathrow Airport will be affected as the Elizabeth line will not be running on Boxing Day. There will also be no service between Paddington and Abbey Wood on 27 December with a reduced service in the central section between 28 December 2022 and 2 January 2023 due to vital engineering work.


Between Sunday 25 December 2022 and Monday 2 January 2023, the Elizabeth line will be fully suspended between Whitechapel and Shenfield. London Overground will be suspended on all routes from Liverpool Street to Enfield, Cheshunt and Chingford and will also be suspended between Romford and Upminster due to Network Rail track maintenance works. Liverpool Street mainline station will be closed.


Planned works are also set to take place on Network Rail-owned infrastructure between Queen’s Park and Harrow & Wealdstone. As a result, between Saturday 17 and Friday 23 December 2022, the Bakerloo line will be fully suspended between Queen’s Park and Harrow & Wealdstone and the London Overground will be fully suspended between Euston and Watford Junction. Customers are advised that additional bus services on routes 718, 719, and 720 will be in place.


Industrial action by Network Rail staff will also affect the transport network, particularly on the London Overground, Elizabeth line and District and Bakerloo line services as they share Network Rail infrastructure. During the strike action, there will be a reduced service on London Overground and the Elizabeth line will revert to running as three separate railways rather than running direct through London. During this time, strike action is also expected on train operating companies in and around the capital, which may affect customers travelling into London.


The Deputy Mayor for Transport, Seb Dance, said: “With the Christmas lights displays, world-famous shopping, restaurants, and the chance to watch the New Year’s Eve fireworks on the banks of the Thames once again, London is a brilliant place to be this festive season. This year the capital’s public transport network has continued to play a vital role in our recovery, helping to build a greener and more prosperous London for everyone. Most of London’s transport network will remain open over the festive season to help everyone make the most of the city, but people should check their journey before they travel.”


Andy Lord, London's Transport Commissioner, said: “The festive season in London is an exciting time, with the shops, pubs, restaurants and entertainment sector all in full swing. Winter Wonderland returns with all its lights and buzz, and the Mayor’s famous New Year's Eve firework display returns for the first time since 2019.


“Most of London’s transport network will remain open over the festive season to help everyone make the most of the city, but customers are asked to check before they travel as some essential planned works and Network Rail industrial action will be taking place. We will be welcoming everyone with cheer as we do all we possibly can to ensure that everyone can travel safely and smoothly.”


When are the National Rail and train operator strikes scheduled for?

Network Rail and train operator strikes are scheduled for:

Tuesday 13 and Wednesday 14 December

Friday 16 and Saturday 17 December

From Saturday 24 December to Tuesday 27 December

Tuesday 3 and Wednesday 4 January

Friday 6 and Saturday 7 January

Action short of a strike on train operating companies between 18 December and 2 January may also affect services.

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