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London Overground logo as it appears on the Tube map
London Overground (LO) is a commuter rail service in London, UKmarker, the brand applied by Transport for London (TfL) to the services on four railway lines: the Watford DC Linemarker, the North London Line, the West London Line and the Gospel Oak to Barking Line.

The name has been used since 2007, when TfL took over the majority of the 'Metro' sector from the Silverlink train operating company franchise. In 2010 it is planned that the Overground network will include the East London Line (formerly part of London Underground) which is being extended to connect with the North London Line. This section is currently closed.

The Overground is part of the National Rail network, run as a rail franchise by the train operating company London Overground Rail Operations Ltd , but the contracting authority is TfL rather than central Government. This arrangement is similar to the model adopted for Merseyrail. The lines continue to be owned and maintained by Network Rail except for the Dalston-New Cross section of the East London Railway, which will remain TfL property when it becomes part of the Overground.

The Overground is a commuter rail system, especially as many of the lines share traffic with freight services, although there is an intention to introduce metro-style frequencies eventually on all routes.



Rail services in Great Britain are run on a system of rail franchises and operated by a number of private train operating companies, managed by National Rail. The London Underground, owned and run by TfL, is not part of this system.

A pilot scheme was launched in 2003 to bring National Rail services operated by multiple companies under one branding umbrella within London. Using the Overground Network brand, TfL introduced consistent information displays, station signage and maps on selected routes in South London. Although this pilot was purely an exercise in branding, this was the first instance of TfL having a visible influence over National Rail services in London. The Overground Network pilot has since been withdrawn.

In January 2004 the Department for Transportmarker announced a review of the rail industry in the United Kingdom. As part of that review, proposals were put forward by Transport for London for a "London Regional Rail Authority" to be established, which would give TfL regulatory powers over rail services in and around Greater London.

A result of this consultation was the transfer of part of the Silverlink rail franchise over to TfL control. This is to date the only agreed movement towards establishing a London-wide rail authority.

The Silverlink franchise had two areas of operation: Silverlink County (regional services from London Eustonmarker to Northamptonmarker, St Albans Abbeymarker, Bletchleymarker and Bedfordmarker); and Silverlink Metro (services mostly within the London urban area). When the franchise was split up in 2007, County services were taken over by the London Midland franchise, and the Metro services came under TfL control.

Initial announcements

On 20 February 2006, the Department for Transport announced that TfL would take over management of services then provided by Silverlink Metro. Tenders were invited from potential contractors to operate the service under the provisional name of the North London Railway. On 5 September 2006, London Overground branding was announced, and it was confirmed that the extended East London Line would be included.


Brand new Bombardier Class 378/0 Capitalstar EMU No.
378017 at Richmond.
The interior of a brand new Bombardier Class 378 Capitalstar, illustrating the longitudinal seating.
On 11 November 2007, TfL took over the franchise for the operation of trains on North London Railway routes formerly of Silverlink Metro.

The official launch ceremony was on 12 November 2007 at Hampstead Heath railway stationmarker by the then Mayor of London Ken Livingstone, with a later media event on the disused bay platform at Willesden Junction stationmarker.

The launch was accompanied by a marketing campaign entitled "London's new train set", with posters and leaflets carrying an image of a model railway retail package containing the new Overground trains, tracks and staff.

At the launch TfL undertook to revamp the routes by improving service frequencies, staffing all stations, improving station facilities, introducing new rolling stock and by allowing Oyster card pay as you go to be used throughout the network from the outset.

All stations were "deep-cleaned" following the TfL takeover, and the Silverlink branding was removed. Station signage is being gradually replaced with Overground-branded signs using TfL's corporate New Johnston typeface. There are temporary adhesive signs at some stations, to be replaced with full-size enamel platform name signs using the orange and blue Overground roundel as station refurbishment progresses.


The Overground is operated by a private company, London Overground Rail Operations Ltd . Following a model similar to that already used for the Docklands Light Railway, TfL invited tenders for operation of the Overground. Unlike National Rail franchisees, TfL would set fares, procure rolling stock and decide service levels. The operator would take an element of revenue risk: TfL take 90% of the revenue risk, 10% of revenue is retained by the operator, and the operator is responsible for revenue collection.

London Overground Rail Operations Limited
tenderers were MTR Laing (a 50:50 joint venture between MTR Corporation and Laing Rail), Govia, National Express Group (the operator of Silverlink), and NedRailways. In December 2006, this was narrowed to Govia and MTR Laing, who were selected to submit their ‘best and final offers’, and on 19 June 2007 it was announced that MTR Laing had been selected.

The contract was signed on 2 July 2007, for seven years with the option of a two-year extension. In preparation for the launch of the Overground, MTR Laing renamed itself London Overground Rail Operations Ltd (LOROL).

In December 2007, Henderson Group, the parent company of John Laing plc, announced the sale of the Laing Rail division, which comprises half of LOROL, Chiltern Railways and a stake in the Wrexham & Shropshire open-access railway operator. In April 2008, Laing Rail was bought by the German rail operator Deutsche Bahn, which now holds a 50% stake in LOROL. The price was said to be around 170 million.

Changes from May 2009 to April 2010

Partial or full line closures:
  • Gospel Oak to Barking Line: each weekend until January 3, 2010 due to signalling works and improving the track and station platforms.
  • North London Line: each weekend until January 2, 2010 due to signalling works and introducing a brand new timetable.
  • West London Line: each weekend until January 2, 2010 due to signalling works and introducing a brand new timetable.

On 15 April 2009, the North London Line platforms at Stratford moved to new high-level platforms 1 & 2 from the old low-level platforms 1 & 2, the latter being made available for the DLR's upcoming Stratford International service (due open 2010). Platforms 1 and 2 comprise an island platform with step-free links to platform 12 and the subway linking to platforms 3 to 11. On 27 September 2009, Imperial Wharf stationmarker opened on the West London Line, between West Brompton and Clapham Junction.

Current system

Initial London Overground network from November 2007 (orange) and the East London line in 2010 (light orange).


The initial network, service levels and timetables are a continuation of Silverlink Metro services. As the Overground name implies, the vast majority of the network is above ground, mostly consisting of railway lines connecting areas outside Central London, with a considerable portion of the network in Zone 2. The network also uses Eustonmarker in central London, the southern terminus of the Watford DC Linemarker.


The Overground consists of the following lines:

The network interchanges with the Bakerloo, Central, District, Hammersmith & City, Jubilee, Northern and Victoria lines and the Docklands Light Railway. The Overground lines appear on the standard Tube maps issued by Transport for London, and a separate map of the system is also available.

The routes cover many areas of northern Greater Londonmarker, and TfL may see direct control of the lines as attractive because:
  • There is some concentration in the north-east, including services to Stratfordmarker, to support the 2012 Summer Olympics;
  • They pass through less affluent areas, and are seen as contributing to the regeneration of these areas; and
  • The North London and Gospel Oak to Barking lines have been considered by some to be neglected and not developed to their full potential.

Service frequencies

Services generally begin between about 05:00 (from Watford Junction) and 06:30 (from Barking), between about 08:00 and 09:00 on Sundays, and all services are scheduled to be completed by midnight.

The following are the general service frequencies on individual lines:
  • North London Line - four trains per hour Monday to Saturday (three per hour after about 20:00), and two per hour on Sunday: most Monday to Saturday off-peak trains are scheduled to leave Richmond at 11, 27, 41 and 57 minutes past the hour (15, 35, 55 after 20:00), and Stratford at 7, 22, 37 and 52 (12, 32, 52 after 20:00); slightly more services run at peak times Monday to Friday; Sunday services leave Richmond at 8 and 38, and Stratford at 19 and 49.
  • West London Line - mainly two trains per hour, with extra trains at peak times. Monday to Saturday off-peak trains are scheduled to leave Clapham Junction at 5 and 35 minutes past the hour, and Willesden Junction at 8 and 38; slightly more services run at peak times Monday to Friday, and some trains run to and from Stratford; Sunday services leave Clapham Junction at 18 and 48, and Willesden Junction at 21 and 51.
  • Gospel Oak to Barking Line - mainly two trains per hour, but three trains per hour at certain times of day: Sunday services are scheduled to leave Gospel Oak at 20 and 50 minutes past the hour, Monday to Saturday services mainly at 25 and 55 (0, 20 and 40 between 07:30 and 10:00, and 15, 35 and 55 between 15:30 and 19:00, with transitional services); Sunday services are scheduled to leave Barking at 5 and 35 minutes past the hour, Monday to Saturday services mainly at 8 and 38 (mostly 0, 20 and 40 between 07:00 and 11:00, and 14, 34 and 54 between 15:30 and 19:00, with transitional services).
  • Watford DC Line - three trains per hour Monday to Saturday: trains are scheduled to leave Euston at 17, 37 and 57 minutes past the hour (17 and 47 Sunday); they leave Watford Junction mainly at 01, 21 and 41 past the hour, with some variations (21 and 51 Sunday).


The Overground serves the following stations:

North London Line West London Line Watford DC Line Gospel Oak - Barking Line East London Line (under construction)

* Step-free access on eastbound platform only | valign="top" width=20%| *[[Willesden Junction station|Willesden Junction]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{Access icon}} *[[Shepherd's Bush railway station|Shepherd's Bush]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{Access icon}} *[[Kensington Olympia station|Kensington Olympia]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|london|rail}} {{Access icon}} *[[West Brompton station|West Brompton]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} {{Access icon}} *[[Imperial Wharf railway station|Imperial Wharf]] {{access icon}} {{rail-interchange|london|river}} *[[Clapham Junction railway station|Clapham Junction]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} | valign="top" width=20%| *[[Euston railway station|London Euston]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} {{Access icon}} *[[South Hampstead railway station|South Hampstead]] *[[Kilburn High Road railway station|Kilburn High Road]] *[[Queen's Park station|Queen's Park]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Kensal Green station|Kensal Green]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Willesden Junction station|Willesden Junction]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{Access icon}} *[[Harlesden station|Harlesden]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Stonebridge Park station|Stonebridge Park]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Wembley Central station|Wembley Central]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[North Wembley station|North Wembley]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[South Kenton station|South Kenton]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Kenton station|Kenton]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Harrow & Wealdstone station|Harrow & Wealdstone]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} {{Access icon}} *[[Headstone Lane railway station|Headstone Lane]] *[[Hatch End railway station|Hatch End]] *[[Carpenders Park railway station|Carpenders Park]] {{Access icon}} *[[Bushey railway station|Bushey]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Watford High Street railway station|Watford High Street]] *[[Watford Junction railway station|Watford Junction]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} {{Access icon}} | valign="top" width=20%| *[[Gospel Oak railway station|Gospel Oak]] *[[Upper Holloway railway station|Upper Holloway]] {{Access icon}} *[[Crouch Hill railway station|Crouch Hill]] *[[Harringay Green Lanes railway station|Harringay Green Lanes]] {{Access icon}} *[[South Tottenham railway station|South Tottenham]] *[[Blackhorse Road station|Blackhorse Road]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Walthamstow Queen's Road railway station|Walthamstow Queen's Road]] {{Access icon}} *[[Leyton Midland Road railway station|Leyton Midland Road]] *[[Leytonstone High Road railway station|Leytonstone High Road]] *[[Wanstead Park railway station|Wanstead Park]] *[[Woodgrange Park railway station|Woodgrange Park]] *[[Barking station|Barking]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} {{Access icon}} | valign="top" width=20%| *[[Highbury & Islington station|Highbury & Islington]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Canonbury railway station|Canonbury]] *[[Dalston Junction railway station|Dalston Junction]]{{Access icon}} *[[Haggerston railway station|Haggerston]]{{Access icon}} *[[Hoxton railway station|Hoxton]]{{Access icon}} *[[Shoreditch High Street railway station|Shoreditch High Street]]{{Access icon}} *[[Whitechapel station|Whitechapel]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Shadwell railway station|Shadwell]] {{rail-interchange|london|dlr}} *[[Wapping railway station|Wapping]] *[[Rotherhithe railway station|Rotherhithe]] *[[Canada Water station|Canada Water]] {{rail-interchange|london|underground}} *[[Surrey Quays railway station|Surrey Quays]] *[[New Cross railway station|New Cross]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[New Cross Gate railway station|New Cross Gate]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Brockley railway station|Brockley]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Honor Oak Park railway station|Honor Oak Park]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Forest Hill railway station|Forest Hill]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Sydenham railway station (London)|Sydenham]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}}{{Access icon}} *[[Crystal Palace railway station|Crystal Palace]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Penge West railway station|Penge West]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Anerley railway station|Anerley]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[Norwood Junction railway station|Norwood Junction]] {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} *[[West Croydon station|West Croydon]] {{rail-interchange|london|tram}} {{rail-interchange|gb|rail}} |} === Ticketing === [[File:LO ticket.png|thumb|right|London Overground ticket based on same design as National Rail tickets but with a Transport for London roundel in the background/relief]] Ticketing on the Overground uses a mix of paper and the [[Oyster Card]] electronic smart card. As with all National Rail and TfL services in London, passengers may use a [[Travelcard]] (daily, three-day, seven-day, monthly or annual), and as on other National Rail Services in London, paper single, return and cheap day return tickets priced under the zonal fare scheme are available. In addition, TfL permits the use of [[Oyster card|Oyster]] "pay-as-you-go" (PAYG). As part of an effort to improve safety and protect revenue, TfL has announced that it will introduce ticket barriers at a number of stations. The stations that did not have barriers when TfL took over the line have been fitted with standalone Oyster Card readers similar to those at ungated Underground and DLR stations. The validator at Blackhorse Road which previously was needed to enter/exit the Oyster card system when using the line is now disused. The ticket stock for the Overground continues to be common National Rail stock, as Overground services remain part of the National Rail network, but with a large TfL roundel in the centre and the repeated legend "[[Rail Settlement Plan]]" in a light green background. === Ticket pricing === Paper tickets are charged at the old [[Silverlink]] prices, which are generally lower than [[National Rail]] London zonal fares and Underground fares. For example, the ticket above shows that the adult single fare between Harrow & Wealdstone (Zone 5) and Hatch End (Zone 6) is £1.50. This would be £1.90 under the National Rail zonal fare system and £3.00 under London Underground fares. Oyster PAYG is charged on the same [[Oyster Card#Pricing|zone-based rules]] as for the [[London Underground|Underground]] and the [[Docklands Light Railway]]. Oyster is generally cheaper than paper tickets: for example, the fare between Harrow & Wealdstone and Hatch End is £1.00 with Oyster PAYG. Stations outside Greater London, except for Watford Junction, are included in the newly created [[Travelcard Zones 7-9]], while Acton Central, Hampstead Heath and Willesden Junction were re-zoned on 2 January 2008 (from 2 to 3, 3 to 2 and 3 to 2/3 respectively), which will also reduce some zone-based fares.{{cite web|url=|title=Your guide to fares and tickets (2 January 2008 until further notice)|month=November | year=2007|publisher=Transport for London|accessdate=2008-07-10|format=PDF}} ==Branding== [[File:Kentish Town West stn signage.JPG|thumb|250px|A London Overground roundel on a station sign at Kentish Town West]] The public presentation of the Overground is visually associated with existing TfL design standards, using similar graphic design elements to those used on Underground publicity, signage and other elements, drawing on the design heritage of [[Frank Pick]]. These design standards will be applied to the new fleet of trains. The routes are branded with a new version of the [[London Underground#The roundel|roundel]], the iconic bar-and-circle symbol associated with transport services in London. The Overground version consists of an orange ring with a blue bar.{{cite web|url=|title=Design standards|accessdate=2008-04-24|publisher=Transport for London}} The roundel was adopted from an earlier design by the [[London Passenger Transport Board]] in 1933 and which has spawned many variations applied to succeeding operations.{{cite web |url= |accessdate=2008-08-25 |title=Designing Modern Britain - London Transport |publisher=Design Museum, London }} The current TfL versions use a hollow circle or ring rather than the original solid circle. In common with other TfL services, the Overground is denoted by a designated sector colour, a vivid orange ([[Pantone]] 158C). Similarly to the presentation of the DLR, the Overground is shown on Tube maps as a double stripe rather than a solid line, to denote its status as a service that is not an Underground line. Corporate signage, stationery and literature use the [[Johnston (typeface)|New Johnston]] typeface in common with other TfL services. ==Performance== Although branded as a TfL service, the Overground remains as, and is monitored for performance as, part of the National Rail network, unlike the [[London Underground|Underground]]. The most recent figures released by the [[Office of Rail Regulation]] (ORR), for April to June 2009, showed that it had achieved 93.7% of the Public Performance Measure (PPM) target for punctuality and reliability set by the ORR. This was very similar to the average PPM for all London and the South East railway companies. The MAA of the PPM for the 12 months to 30 June 2009 was 92.3%.{{cite web|url=|title=National Rail Trends 2009-2010 Quarter One: April 09 - June 09|publisher=Office of Rail Regulation|accessdate=2009-10-06|format=PDF}} TfL, in conjunction with the [[Massachusetts Institute of Technology]], has investigated the use of data from the [[Oyster card|Oyster smartcard]] ticketing system to measure the performance of the Overground explicitly from the passenger perspective.{{cite web |first=Michael |last=Frumin |title=Oyster-Based Performance Metrics for the London Overground |date=2008 |url= }} == Rolling stock == [[File:Overground Branding on 508303.jpg|thumb|Overground branding on a [[British Rail Class 508|Class 508]] coach in [[Silverlink]] livery]] Since London Overground took over operations from the previous franchisee, [[Silverlink]], the network has been operated (apart from the [[East London Line]]) using [[British Rail Class 313|Class 313 EMUs]], [[British Rail Class 508|Class 508 EMUs]] and [[British Rail Class 150|Class 150 DMUs]] inherited from Silverlink. The units retain Silverlink green and purple livery, with temporary London Overground branding. The three Class 508 units were withdrawn in late [[2008]]. The East London line, previously operated with [[London Underground A60 and A62 Stock]], is temporarily closed and a [[East London Line#Rail replacement bus services|rail replacement bus]] service is in operation. TfL is now in the process of introducing brand new rolling stock on each of the London Overground lines. This programme will be carried out over three to five years, and will include the former London Underground East London Line, which is being converted to suburban rail operation. From 2009 the electrified lines will be operated by [[British Rail Class 378|Class 378]] [[Electrostar|Capitalstars]] to be built by [[Bombardier Transportation]]. The [[East London Line]] will initially have 20 four-car units and the [[North London Line]] 24 three-car units. In 2011, the North London Railway fleet will be extended to four cars and the East London Railway will gain three extra trains.{{cite news | title = £36m contract to bring extra rail carriages for London Overground | publisher = [[Transport for London]] | date = 2007-07-04 | url = | accessdate = 2008-04-23}} The new Class 378 electric trains were officially unveiled at Willesden Junction station on 13 July 2009. They include a number of Tube-style features, including sideways seating (upholstery in [[Misha Black]]'s District-line-style moquette) and more standing room to fit in with a high-capacity metro service. The trains also introduce new walk-through open carriage interiors and [[air conditioning]]. The new fleet is currently undergoing testing on the network and is graudally being brought into service.{{cite news|url=|title= In Pictures: Mayor Unveils New London Overground Train|date=2009-07-13|publisher=The Londonist|accessdate=2009-07-14}}{{cite news|url=|title=London Overground introduces Class 378 train fleet|date=2009-07-13|publisher=Transport Briefing|accessdate=2009-07-14}} The first Capitalstars began passenger operation in July 2009.{{cite web|url=|title=First Overground 378 Finally Enters Passenger Service|date=2009-07-29|publisher=London Reconnections|accessdate=2009-08-03}} The new trains are to be leased from a newly-formed [[Rolling Stock Operating Company]] (ROSCO) named [[QW Rail Leasing]], with the lease running until 2027. TfL had originally planned to buy the new Class 378 EMU fleet outright, but in February 2008, TfL announced that it would lease rather than purchase the trains. TfL took this option to free up the £250 million capital cost of purchase, combined with reducing the risk of making a loss through any future sell-on of the fleet.{{cite news | title = Transport for London signs new train leasing contract | publisher = [[Transport for London]] | date = 2007-07-04 | url = | accessdate = 2008-04-23}} The Class 378 stock will not be able to operate over the [[Gospel Oak to Barking Line]] (GOBLIN) as the line is not electrified. While [[electrification]] is advocated by [[Transport for London|TfL]], local boroughs and passenger groups, it has not been included as part of [[Network Rail|Network Rail's]] Route Utilisation Strategy for the Cross London Route. TfL has indicated that it intends to use new two-car [[British Rail Class 172|Class 172]] [[Turbostar]] diesel trains from 2009.{{citeweb|url=|title=New Plans|publisher=The Barking - Gospel Oak Line User Group}} MTR/Laing will lease eight two-car units from a ROCSO, rather than their being purchased by TfL, as was originally planned with the Class 378 units.{{cite journal |last= |first= |authorlink= |coauthors= |year= 2007|month= September|title= The Underground Roundel moves Overground|journal= Today's Railways (UK)|volume= |issue= 70|pages= 24–30 |id= |url= |accessdate= 2007-09-17 |quote= }} The eight Class 172/0 units were ordered by [[Angel Trains]] on behalf of TfL in November 2007.{{citeweb|url=|title=Class 172 Turbostar|publisher=The Railway Centre}} If the plan to replace the [[Watford DC Line]] with a [[Bakerloo line]] service to [[Watford Junction railway station|Watford Junction]] goes ahead, the [[London Underground 1972 Stock|1972 Stock]] fleet on the Bakerloo line could be augmented by newly-retired [[Victoria line]] [[London Underground 1967 Stock|1967 Stock]] trains, although these would need modification.{{cite web | title = London Overground & Orbirail | publisher = | date = 2006-12-07 | url = | accessdate = 2007-01-10}} === Current fleet === {|class="wikitable" |----- bgcolor=#f9f9f9 ! rowspan="2" | Class  ! rowspan="2" |Image ! rowspan="2" |Type ! colspan="2" | Top speed  ! rowspan="2" | Number  ! rowspan="2" | Cars per set  ! rowspan="2" | Seat layout  ! rowspan="2" | Number of seats  ! rowspan="2" | Routes operated  ! rowspan="2" | Built  |----- bgcolor=#f9f9f9 ! mph  ! km/h  |- |[[British Rail Class 150|Class 150/1]] |[[File:Unit 150130 at Barking.JPG|100px]] |[[diesel multiple unit]] |75 |120 |6 {{Citation needed|date=November 2007}} |2 |2+2 (high density) |146 (based on previous 2+3 seating) |[[Gospel Oak to Barking Line|Gospel Oak-Barking]] |1984-87 |- |[[British Rail Class 313|Class 313/1]] |[[File:31311 at Euston.jpg|100px]] |[[electric multiple unit]] |75 |120 |23 (4 off lease) |3 |2+2/2+3 (high density) |228 |[[North London Line|North London]];
[[Watford DC Line|Watford DC]];
[[West London Line|West London]] |1975-78
(Refurbished 1997-2002) |- |[[British Rail Class 378|Class 378/0
''Capitalstar'']] |[[File:378005 WIJ 01.jpg|100px]] |[[electric multiple unit]] |75 |120 |24 (10 Delivered) |3 |Longitudinal | |[[North London Line|North London]]
[[Watford DC Line|Watford DC]]
[[West London Line|West London]] |2007-2009 |} [[File:Class 313 London Overground Diagram.PNG|center|800px]] === Future fleet === {|class="wikitable" ! rowspan="2" |Class ! rowspan="2" |Type ! colspan="2" |Top speed ! rowspan="2" |Number ! rowspan="2" |Cars per set ! rowspan="2" |Seat layout ! rowspan="2" |Routes operated ! rowspan="2" |Built |- !mph !km/h |- |[[British Rail Class 172|Class 172/0
''Turbostar'']] |[[diesel multiple unit]] |75 |120 |8 |2 |2+3 |[[Gospel Oak to Barking Line|Gospel Oak-Barking]] |2009 |- |[[British Rail Class 378|Class 378/1
''Capitalstar'']] |[[electric multiple unit]] |75 |120 |23 |4 |Longitudinal |[[East London Line|East London]] |2010-2011 |- |[[British Rail Class 378|Class 378/2
''Capitalstar'']]* |[[electric multiple unit]] |75 |120 |10 |4 |Longitudinal |[[North London Line|North London]]
[[Watford DC Line|Watford DC]]
[[West London Line|West London]] |2010-2012 |- |} *Class 378/0 will become 378/2 when a fourth car is added

Past Fleet

 Class   Type   Image   Top speed   Number   Cars per set   Routes operated   Built   Notes 
 mph   km/h 
Class 508/3 electric multiple unit 75 120 3 3 Watford DC Linemarker 1979-1980 (Refurbished 2003) Withdrawn in 2009


All older Overground trains remain in Silverlink's purple and lime green livery with yellow doors. Silverlink logos have been removed and Overground banners have been added to most units. It is not expected that any more cosmetic changes will be made to the livery and interiors until the delivery of the new rolling stock.

New Class 378 trains have been painted in a new livery, similar to the Underground's, which has blue and white coaches with orange doors and yellow fronts.
378007 at Richmond, displaying the new livery.

Future developments

The possible future shape of the London Overground system
The expansion of the Overground network has been widely publicised by TfL as part of its transport strategy. It is proposed to add two new lines to the network, which would link to form a ring around London. The East London Railway is already under construction, while funding for the South London Line has recently been secured . Prospective 2010 Tube maps were released to the press illustrating the potential full extent of the planned network.

East London Line

The new Overground rail bridge is lowered into place over Shoreditch High Street

The East London Line will become part of the network when the Phase 1 extensions to the East London Line to the new southern termini at Crystal Palacemarker and West Croydonmarker and the northern extension (mostly along the Broad Streetmarker viaduct) to the re-opened Dalston Junctionmarker are completed in 2010. When the East London Line is added to the network, this will add substantial sections of line that are in tunnels (including the Thames Tunnelmarker) (the oldest tunnel under the Thames or indeed any other navigable river in the world), and will create the anomaly that the London Overground line will be below the London Underground part of Whitechapel stationmarker.

The line was closed on 22 December 2007 in preparation for its extension and incorporation into the Overground. As of June 2008, work is due for completion ahead of schedule on 19 October 2009.

In the original Phase 1 plans, the East London Line terminated just south of the North London Line, at Dalston Junctionmarker station. The former Mayor, Ken Livingstone, has since stated that Phase 1 of the East London Line project would be extended to Highbury & Islingtonmarker, in order to make a connection with the North London Line, the Victoria Line and First Capital Connect services. This is not planned to open until February 2011.

Watford DC Line

The London Overground terminus at Watford Junction
TfL has proposed re-extending the Bakerloo Line to Watford Junctionmarker. It has been suggested that most or all of the line from Queen's Parkmarker to Watford Junction would be used exclusively by the Underground, and Overground services would be withdrawn.

As part of this change, Overground services would be diverted at Primrose Hill Junction via the currently freight-only route through Primrose Hill stationmarker (closed since 1992) to Camden Roadmarker, providing a new service running between Queen's Park and Stratford. As a result of this service change, Kilburn High Roadmarker and South Hampsteadmarker would no longer have direct services to central London, and the Overground would lose its only Zone 1 station.

However, the Watford line is still shown as part of the Overground on prospective Tube maps issued by TfL, so this proposal appears uncertain.

South London Line

1914 diagram of Clapham junction
1914 diagram of junctions near Surrey Quays
One of the high rail bridges which pass over Brixton

The Phase 2 plans of the East London Line extension incorporate an extension from Surrey Quaysmarker along the South London Line to Clapham Junction. This would then create an orbital network around Central London, fulfilling the Orbirail concept. The extension is scheduled to open in May 2012.

The South London route will branch off from the East London line south of Surrey Quays and will involve the re-opening of a stretch of disused East London Railway Company line. The line will be conveyed via a bridge over Surrey Canal Road to Old Kent Road Junction where it will join the South London line at Queens Road Peckhammarker. The line will then follow the existing National Rail route via Denmark Hillmarker as far as Wandsworth Roadmarker, then branch off at Factory Junction, passing through Batterseamarker towards Clapham Junctionmarker, where it will connect with the existing West London line Overground services. The West London services arrive and depart from platform 2 on the north side of the station, but no information has yet been published about platform provision for the South London line services.

Funding for the South London extension project was secured in February 2009, including £64 million, which was received from the DfT, and £15 million from TfL.

TfL had previously suggested that the South London line project should be funded as part of the Thameslink Programme, due to capacity constraints at London Bridge stationmarker once the Thameslink upgrade has taken place. Network Rail's South London Route Utilisation Strategy has also very strongly emphasised the need for this extension to the ELL, particularly in respect of the even more restricted capacity during the reconstruction of London Bridge.

The planned South London route passes over both Loughborough Junctionmarker and Brixtonmarker stations, without stopping. The proposals have been criticised for not including new interchange stations with Thameslink and the London Underground Victoria lines. Under current proposals, no stations are planned at these locations as the line is on high railway arches, making the cost of any station construction prohibitive.

In the March 2008 edition of The Londoner newspaper TfL announced an intention to take over more routes in South London when Southern's franchise runs out in 2009. However, this plan was not included in the franchise tender documents, nor in the 2008 ten-year plan.

See also


  1. The fastest route between Clapham Junction and Stratford is still via London Waterloo, using South West Trains services and the Jubilee line. The operation of direct services on this route will mainly benefit passengers joining or alighting at intermediate stations and those who do not wish to travel via Zone 1
  2. Latest Tube Map
  3. at p. 66, para. 2.7: East London Line Extension
  4. (map illustrating future development phases as proposed by TfL in 2006, subject to change)
  5. Rail Express issue 154, March 2009

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