Gospel Oak-Barking line re-opening date announced

Photo: Network Rail.
Photo: Network Rail.

London Overground’s Gospel Oak-Barking line (GOBLIN) is set to re-open on January 15, 2018, following the installation of new overhead lines.

Electrification of the 22.5km route was expected to be completed in February 2017, following a phased eight-month closure.

However, “incorrectly designed” overhead line equipment and the late delivery of materials delayed the scheme and led to Network Rail to apologise to passengers.

Engineers will now test the line at night and in between normal services to complete electrification ahead of the introduction of Bombardier Aventra EMUs from spring 2018.

When services resume, the existing two-car Class 172 diesel trains will be used until the new four-car electric trains – which will double the line’s capacity – have been fully tested and driver training completed.

Photo: Network Rail.
Photo: Network Rail.

Network Rail still needs to carry out some improvements to the Crouch Hill Bridge, which crosses GOBLIN, meaning no London Overground services will operate on this line over the weekend of April 7-8. Services will restart on April 9.

Network Rail’s managing director for the Anglia route, Meliha Duymaz, said: “Passengers travelling on the Gospel Oak to Barking line are set to benefit from a transformational, once in a generation upgrade with a new fleet of longer, electric trains so that twice as many people can travel comfortably, once line testing is complete.

“I’d like to say a big thank you to our railway neighbours and passengers for their enormous patience and understanding while we worked to improve this busy London route.”

The electrification of GOBLIN is being carried out by Network Rail and funded by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.

As well as the London Overground, freight services also operate on GOBLIN.

Photo: Network Rail.
Photo: Network Rail.

Read more: In focus – London Overground’s Barking Riverside Extension