London’s Circle Line railway, which for years has been notorious for slow running and endless service delays, will soon be history.
Transport for London have decided that from December 13 the Circle Line will no longer “go round and round” but will instead run to and from Edgware Road. While trains will complete the full circle in each direction from Edgware Road, once they reach the terminus, they will reverse and go back they way they’ve come. There will be no through running.
TfL have also added the Hammersmith & City Line to the Circle Line so that the route map for the line now looks like a tadpole.
TfL say the changes will result in a more reliable service on the original route as any disruptions won’t mean the entire Circle Line service coming to a halt.
However, one effect will be to reduce the number of trains on the Hammersmith branch which is sure to cause some annoyance, if not chaos, for people who need to travel between Hammersmith and the City.
One lesser casualty of the move will be the legendary Circle Line pub crawl in which participants had to travel to all 27 stations on the line, get off and have a drink at the nearest pub and get back on the train.
Drinkers had 12 hours to complete the challenge but I have yet to meet anyone who actually made it past the ninth or tenth stop, and who wasn’t completely trousered by then.
Now that there is no through running, the pub crawl just won’t be the same. That might not be a bad thing for the Tube – binge drinking and railways do not mix well – but it is one of those quirky things that made Britain different.
“However, one effect will be to reduce the number of trains on the Hammersmith branch which is sure to cause some annoyance, if not chaos, for people who need to travel between Hammersmith and the City.”
More trains will run on the Hammersmith branch – Circle line trains will supplement the existing H&C line service, with trains every 5 minutes between Hammersmith & The City. The only detriment will be 1 less train an hour for people travelling further – to the eastern end of the H&C. The line will now run to/from Barking full time (another benefit), but to allow for the extra Circle line services on the Hammersmith branch there will be 1 less H&C train an hour. Hardly ‘chaos’ by any judgement. Anyone wanting to go that far easC, if travelling from the Hammersmith branch would find it quicker to change to the Central line at Notting Hill Gate, zip through town on that and then do a cross platform interchange at Mile End back onto the H&C or District lines. Easy and even faster from west to east with the more frequent trains on the Hammersmith branch.
Well, who would have believed it? They have taken the world’s worst and most unreliable Metro service and made it even worse! Just as unreliable as before but with the added inconvenience of a change at Edgware Rd or using the overcrowded H&C platforms at Paddington (Bishops Rd). A complete fiasco.