Uncertainty over Gospel Oak to Barking train fleet

The new Class 710 London Overground trains being built and tested at Bombardier in Derby
Credit: Transport for London

In September 2015, Network Rail announced plans to electrify London Overground’s Gospel Oak to Barking Line (GOBLIN), awarding £56.9m to the project.

Since work started with partial closures from June to September 2016, a full closure from October 2016 to February 2017, as well as further weekend and evening work planned until late June 2017; the project faced multiple setbacks including incorrect designs and around four months of tests before the overhead wires could finally be complete in January 2018.

These delays have of course prevented the introduction of the new Class 710 electrical multiple units (EMUs) from entering passenger service. However, Transport for London’s (TfL) plans on the introduction is now unclear, with two of the line’s current fleet of eight Class 172 diesel multiple units (DMUs) transferred to their new home at West Midlands Trains.

London Overground, operated by Arriva Rail London, was due to start the rollout of the Class 710 fleet in March 2018.

However, faults with the onboard Train Control Management System (TCMS) have hindered this.

In a stop gap measure to ensure continuity of service, a four car Class 378 has been tested on the line, and a decision is expected to be made regarding the introduction of Class 378s later this month.

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5 COMMENTS

  1. London Overground might consider inheriting few of their Class 317’s used on the Liverpool Street-Chingford, Cheshunt and Enfield Town West Anglia metro services and Romford-Upminster shuttle service to operate on the Gospel Oak-Barking Line for short period as the Class 710s might not be entering service until Spring or Summer this year.

    • Or yes transfer some converted Class 378 4-Car trains (previously 5-Car) to operate on the Gospel Oak-Barking Line for short period. And perhaps keep one 4-Car Class 378 (permanently) for the Romford-Upminster line. Once the Class 710 trains have entered service.

  2. London Overground are becoming more of a joke of their own by not introducing their new Class 710 Aventra trains.

    That it was suppose to come into service in December last year. They are playing cat & mouse and not telling passengers on whether the new Class 710 trains will start operating on the Gospel Oak-Barking Line and on other London Overground lines such as the West Anglia (Liverpool St-Cheshunt, Chingford and Enfield Town) metro services, Euston-Watford DC service, North London Line, West London Line and Romford-Upminster shuttle service.

    Could London Overground possibly transfer some of the Class 317 EMUs on hire to operate on the GOBLIN Line for short period of time.

    Before the Class 710 Aventra trains are set to start passenger service sometime this year without having anymore delays. And with the last remaining Class 172/0 moved from London Overground to West Midlands Trains so they can start using them on Coventry-Leamington Spa and Coventry-Nuneaton services this year.

    • Or why not London Overground retain some of their Class 315s and to give them a last chance in service to operate them as hired on the Gospel Oak-Barking line. Before they are replaced by the Class 710s.

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