Jubilee Line Won't Be Ready Until January; If We're Lucky

Rachel Holdsworth
By Rachel Holdsworth Last edited 104 months ago
Jubilee Line Won't Be Ready Until January; If We're Lucky

Jubilee_carriage24Sep09.jpg Tube Lines have finally admitted what we told you a month ago: the upgrade to the Jubilee line won't be finished by December. The work to install a new signalling system should be done by January according to the PPP company, but LU are still waiting for the revised date and think it could run beyond that. All Tube Lines could do was whinge to the Guardian about not getting as many line closures as they wanted:

"We got roundly half the closures that we needed. As a result you become a lot more inefficient and you do not get as much productivity"

Hang on. Half the closures? The Jubilee line's been closed virtually every bloody weekend since... since forever, it feels like. How many closures did they want? Would this have involved inventing extra days - Friturday, Tunday - to get it done? No wonder LU's acting managing director, Richard Parry, is hacked off:

"I am not at all surprised by this. We need Tube Lines to admit what it is actually capable of doing and just come clean"

Indeed. LU have also reached the final straw on the quarrel over funding; you remember, Tube Lines say they need £x to do the work, LU says that's ridiculous etc? The two sides are now closer in their estimates than they've ever been, but they've still had to call in the arbiter to settle it. This move will probably cost LU more than they want to pay (the arbiter's consistently come up with costs somewhere in between the two), but at least we'll finally find out exactly what we'll be getting over the next few years. Even if 'when' is a whole other subject. (Image by Andy Wilkes from the Londonist Flickr pool)

Last Updated 24 September 2009


As someone who has been frustrated by the Vic line closures over the past few years (which saw us with line closures every weekend, and no service after 10pm Mon - Thu), why does the Jubilee line now get so much more limelight?

Most of the Jubilee line stations are served by alternative tube / DLR routes (Except, North Greenwich and Surrey Quays). Yes, the routes sometimes take longer, but that's exactly the same as what we had to put up with on the Victoria. Try getting from Brixton to King's Cross without the Vic line. It's not half as quick or easy.

The vic line closures were more extensive, and people didn't grumble half as much. Are people on the vic line more rational or less demanding? Like it or lump it, the work has to be done. What alternatives do jubilee passengers want? Just leave the line to rot? Close the line for a few weeks and get it all done in one go?

It's all very well saying "do the work quicker" or "it should have been done during the extension work" - but given all the negative publicity, I'll take a wild stab and suggest that it's being done as quickly as it can, and, yes, arguably the work should have been done during the extension, but it wasn't, and moaning about that now won't change anything.


Interesting comments there Markle, but sadly I disagree with most of what you say. As a user of the Jubilee Line, over the year we have had to put up with numerous closures - both line and station closures - particuarly at the northern end of the Jubilee Line.

Your comment about getting to Brixton to Kings Cross is hilarious; at least you had a half decent alternative route; Northern Line to Stockwell, then one stop to Brixton. True it might take longer, but at least you wont have to wait up 20 minutes for a rail replacement bus, which then gets caught up in traffic and finally get home exhausted after an over an hour of travelling, for what is on paper just a few miles (e.g. like some say who travelled wished to get to Neasden on the Baker Street to Wembley Park all stations service last weekend and planned again this weekend).

The main crux of the problem is that Jubilee line passengers were promised this would all be resolved by December and Tube Lines have reneged on that promise. Perhaps if they didn't do things like placing the wrong cables for a few miles, as quoted on other websites, it would have been delivered on time.

What should have taken a few months to complete (just like the Vic Line closures in 2007) will now take around 9 months to complete. Now if they pulled the same stunt back in 2007 and turned round and said "oops, sorry, but we'll have to extend it by a few months", you wouldn't be best pleased either. Remember, this is in addition to 12 additional closures that weren't planned, as stated in the May-June PPP Performance report (an interesting read), even before the additional January extention.

TfL are just as much to blame, as they could (and should) have alleviated pressure on the replacement buses by opening the disused used platforms of the Met Line at Willesden Green and Neasden when the Met Line was working and the Jubilee was not.

I do not disagree that the work has to be done, but it is the manner in which this has been managed is pathetic.


I live in North Greenwich and I am absolutely fed up with being completely cut off from the Central London every single weekend. The replacement bus service is ridiculous as it goes to Stratford only but not west bound. So as I have 1 to 2 zones monthly ticket I have to pay £1.1 each direction for the privilege of extra travel of 1 hour. It basically takes 1.5 hour to get to Central London and cost 2.2 return.
I I don’t want to pay I have to take buss 188 to get to other replacement in Canada water or London Bridge which is very unreliable and doesn’t run according to time table. You might end up waiting for 30 min. The amazing thing about this bus is then it goes east bound it says to north Greenwich but on the way it “changes it’s mind” and drops everybody at Greenwich Cutty Shark. If I am lucky buss option is about 2 hours to get to central London.
For me these closure is an absolute nightmare and I hate that on TFL website they don’t have any information how long it will last or on which weekends it’s going to be closed.