Longer evening peak in new Northern Line timetable

LONDON UNDERGROUND introduced a new timetable on the Northern Line on 29 January, doubling the length of the 24 trains per hour (tph) evening peak service to two hours. The line is LU’s busiest and now operates 24tph on both central London branches and 30tph between Kennington and Morden from 17.00 to 19.00 on weekdays. The timetable improvement follows the decision last autumn to cancel the procurement of 17 additional trains for the line, which would have supported an increase in service frequency. A fall in passenger numbers on the tube last summer led Transport for London to reconsider the purchase as it prioritised other projects, including the procurement of new trains for the Piccadilly Line. The new trains would have enabled LU to operate 30tph on the two central London branches of the Northern Line by 2023.

The opening of the Northern Line extension to Battersea in 2020 will place further pressure on the current fleet of 106 1995 Stock trains. LU has said it is examining ways to achieve a 32tph service on the Morden branch in the morning peak and 28tph on the central London branches by September 2019.

LU also planned to buy 10 more trains for the Jubilee Line. It similarly plans a timetable enhancement on this line in May, doubling the length of time for which the peak 30tph operates, with a possible further enhancement to a 31tph or 32tph service in 2019; this is short of the original aspiration for a peak frequency of up to 36tph.