Design error delays Gospel Oak to Barking line electrification

Photo: Network Rail.

Electrification of the Gospel Oak to Barking London Overground line has been delayed because of “incorrectly designed” overhead line equipment.

Although the line will reopen as planned at the end of this month, Network Rail has said further closures will be needed later in the year to complete the work.

In an announcement earlier today, Network Rail said it had been unable to install some of the OLE structures because they had been “incorrectly designed”. It also blamed the late delivery of materials.

The phased eight-month closure to electrify the 22.5km route will come to an end on February 27. Two-car diesel train services will resume as planned.

Network Rail hasn’t suggested the delay will affect the scheduled introduction of electric services in 2018.

Network Rail’s route managing director for Anglia, Richard Schofield, said: “I sincerely apologise to passengers that we have not been able to complete all of the work in the time we set out, and for the future disruption we will cause to their journeys.

“I have instructed the project team to quickly deliver a robust plan to finish the work before new trains arrive next year, and passengers can be reassured that the line will reopen later this month to diesel trains as planned. A full review into what went wrong has already begun.”


  1. A question to Richard Schofield
    Is it the same project team, that carried out the work. That has been instructed to finish the work quickly?

  2. I have been a keen admirer of the overhead line equipment on our railways! But i have to admit that the new overhead line equipment on the goblin and great Eastern lines is by far the most repulsive design ever seen! It’s whole design is over obtrusive with enormous oversized gantries and massive booms across the tracks,, the resister Arms and support equipment is too large and twisted looking! It might be reliable, but unlike the mk 2/3 design of the past, this ugly tangled mess of ohle scores zero in aesthetic’s, it’s so unsightly to look at and its difficult to say this as someone who doesn’t approve of third rail,, but maybe third rail would have looked far better than this repulsive gigantic oversized 25kv system


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