The Gospel Oak-Barking Overground line is getting closed again until next year after delays derail upgrade timeline

Rebecca Smith

The prolonged upgrade of Gospel Oak to Barking on the Overground is resulting in yet another closure from today until mid-January after delays to electrification work.

Transport for London (TfL) has warned travellers that from 6.30pm Saturday 18 November until Sunday 14 January 2018, trains will not run between Gospel Oak and Barking as Network Rail works on a major upgrade to allow new, longer trains to run from spring next year.

Read more: Costs on Gospel Oak to Barking upgrade climb to £172m after delays

Delays have pushed the original timeline off track due to incorrect design and late delivery of materials, and increased the cost of the £130m project to £172m. The work was meant to be completed in June, and now is not expected to be wrapped up until January.

Once the electrification work is done, that will be followed by testing of the new electric trains and driver training, with trains entering passenger service from spring 2018. The current diesel services will run as normal until they are replaced by the new double-length trains.

Along the 14-mile route, a number of the structures carrying the overhead lines were incorrectly designed and couldn't be installed at the planned locations. Further delays were caused by late delivery of materials and structures.

Replacement buses will run while the line is suspended, and TfL said regular users of the line will be automatically refunded the extra cost of Zone 1 travel made by Tube or rail.

Network Rail had previously said the work "has not been without its difficulties" and apologised for the continued disruption, while saying the "immense benefits" of the project will be realised in the months ahead.

It said the programme of works will double the current capacity for passengers on the line, as well as improving air quality for people who live and work near the railway.

(Source: Network Rail)

Read more: The £130m Gospel Oak upgrade won't be finished until next year after delays

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