Transport for London, who are run by the London Mayor made a series of significant announcements about the Tube. Ahead of an election for Mayor in 2015, it was announced that from a point in that year some of the tube network will be open 24 hours per day, at weekends. The initial 24-hour weekend Tube network will be comprised of regular services on the Northern, Piccadilly, Victoria, Central and Jubilee lines. Services will run to and from Heathrow Terminal 5, but not Terminal 4. A map showing the routes/stops is here.
There is no doubt that this is a significant enhancement for both residents and visitors, although I would expect strikes whilst the enhanced pay demanded by the Unions is discussed. These might even start as soon as next month. The Union’s reaction has been quoted as being that they will “fight these plans with every tool at our disposal and that includes political, public and industrial campaigning on an unprecedented scale”.
However, at the same time the Mayor, rather more quietly implemented some other changes:
- There will be no more ticket offices. Instead staff will operate from ticket barriers and ticket halls.
- Updates to the self-service ticket machines to make them faster from next summer
- Wi-Fi at all sub-surface stations
- Disabled access at a further 27 stations
- The use of contact-less cards being used to pay for travel at ticket barriers
So watch this space for updates. I suspect a rocky road before I can pop on the tube at 1am.