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Central Line - Service Reductions north of Loughton from January 2020


Central Line
15 February 2020

The new timetable started on 26th January, although there are reports of trains on the timetable not appearing.

TfL have not stated when the timetable will return to what we had before, but it has been reported that the upgrades that require this service reduction may not be completed until 2023.



18 January 2020

Changes to the Central Line timetable take effect soon.

TfL are now showing the revised times on their Journey Planner, if you change your travel date to 26 January or later.


When taking the tube on Monday to Friday going into London:

Empty trains will start at Debden at 7:41am and 8:17am. The rest (about every 6 minutes) will come through from Epping,and these will of course go on to call at Loughton.

Empty trains will start at Loughton at:
7:09am, 7:28am, 7:37am, 7:52am
8:07am, 8:15am, 8:28am, 8:37am, 8:46am, 8:55am
9:05am, 9:14am, 9:25am and then every 10 minutes

There has apparently been some problem with operating short test trains at Hainault, but this won't affect the Loughton service.



14 January 2020

TfL have provided further information on the changes - see the email below.





14 December 2019
The Mayor of London has replied to the petition organised on change.org, signed by nearly 10,000 people. He admits that 15,000 people will experience a reduction in train frequency, or will be required to change trains at Hainault (out of the over-100,000 passengers each day).

Further details on the changes have emerged:

We have also been told:

15 November 2019
Central Line - Service Reductions from January 2020

Transport for London (TfL) has announced changes (see the below email) to the Central Line service, which for our town will mean fewer Loughton-Epping peak hour services - more on the District Council website.

TfL will take some trains out of service, a few at a time, to replace life-expired motors (meaning fewer future defective trains) and will make adaptations to provide more space for wheelchair users, as well as improving audio and visual passenger information. We understand that this work will take 'a number of years'.

Morning and evening peak services at Debden, Theydon Bois and Epping stations will be reduced (at Debden from 11 trains per hour to 9  and at Epping from 10 trains down to 8 per hour).

TfL did not do any prior consultations on these changes, which will affect many people. Peak time Loughton commuters may benefit from more trains starting at Loughton, but Debden commuters will have to choose between overcrowded journeys straight through, or changing trains at Loughton in the hope of getting seats.

Travelling on the Central Line can be frustrating and uncomfortable, and new trains are many years away. TfL presumably needs to do this work, but we question why these changes only impact our end of the line, and how TfL decided on this plan?

There will also be changes adversely affecting residents using the services between Woodford and Hainault, which LRA Cllr Chris Pond raised with senior Conservatives at Epping Forest District Council in spring 2019, when he first heard of some of them, but nothing was done.


Central Line - Service Reductions in January 2020