Brixton Tube Chaos Will Last Until July 2015

Laura Reynolds
By Laura Reynolds Last edited 42 months ago
Brixton Tube Chaos Will Last Until July 2015

Back in October, Brixton commuters faced overcrowding problems. Photo: Owen Llewellyn

Unhappy commuters using Brixton Underground station, who've faced queues and overcrowding this week, can expect the misery to continue until July next year.

Work on one of the station's three escalators this week was meant to be completed by the end of the month, but TfL has now revealed that work will soon begin on the station's other escalators, continuing until next summer.

The work this week has seen crowds building outside the street entrance of the station, with reports of police helping station staff deal with the bottleneck.

This follows at least two days of rush hour delays and similar crowds at the station in October, due to separate incidents of a broken escalator and a passenger breaking their ankle while travelling on the escalator.

TfL is suggesting that passengers use Oval or Stockwell stations as alternatives whilst the work is going on, but one passenger described the bus situation as "bad at the best of times".

Peter McNaught, LU Operations Director, said: “ We have just commenced works to refurbish two of the three escalators at Brixton station. The escalators are over 40 years old and now need to be refurbished to ensure the continued safe operation of the station for the future. To keep the station open  the escalators are being refurbished one at a time, however we appreciate that it is taking longer for customers to enter and exit the station during the morning and evening rush hour.  We have more  staff at the station and additional buses operating between Brixton and Stockwell stations to help customers with their journeys. I would like to apologise for any disruption caused while these works take place, which are due to be completed by Summer 2015.”

Last Updated 21 November 2014


The trouble with suggesting that people use Stockwell or Oval instead is that, since Brixton is at the end of the line, many people have already had lengthy bus journeys just to get to Brixton in the first place.

Annabel Smyth

The middle escalator is nowhere near 40 years old! I have only lived in Brixton for 35 years, and I well remember its being installed. 20 years, perhaps. Granted, it may now need refurbishing, but there's no need to tell porkies about its age. And the congestion would be a lot less if they hadn't taken up half the foyer area building hoardings around the top of the escalator.


1) I think it would help if they actually had some work going on...a week of chaos and they dont seem to have started on the escalator work - whats the point of shutting it off before they need to!
2) I'm currently injured and can't walk to stockwell. Are tfl going to reimburse my extra bus oyster fare every day? When the queues for the buses are already ridiculous.


Guess the new hipsters will need to look to live somewhere else in London... all this trouble and then paying £2K a month for a 2 bed flat without bills or council tax included? Nah thanks... maybe one day if I'll be that rich will consider moving up to north London! ;)

Mark Wilson

A good example of why long-term under-investment in the Tube network south of the river was bad thinking. Inevitably, as the Tube - and public transport network as a whole - is so sparse in Lambeth, Southwark, Wandsworth, Merton, Croydon, etc, house prices and rents are more affordable, so more people move there. More people means a need for more infrastructure. If estate agents, pubs, betting shops, chicken shops and supermarkets can see this and move into areas where the population is growing, why can't the national and local governments respond?

Barbara Val

Absolute disgrace. I agree with Mark: all those new apartment blocks in Brixton must surely provide Lambeth council/Greater London Authority with enough money in the form of stamp duty and other property taxes to invest a bit more in the transport infrastructure? It's outrageous that, after years of travel disruption while the tube station was being completely overhauled -or so we were told-, Brixton locals have to suffer this sort of ongoing disruption. I need to leave 20 minutes earlier to get to work in time. With no reduction in the fare I pay. It's about time Boris Johnson and his ilk started investing in south London, not to mention the level of corruption that must be going on in Transport for london / Lambeth council for the escalators in a newly renovated tube station to be over 40 years old?? Either they are lying or if it's true they are so old, it's absolutely outrageous. Either way, I had enough. Let's start a petition.

Lynn Mossburg

That's terrible for all! Where I live here in the States there is never ending construction on certain main roads and tunnels!

Claire Cobb

I got caught out last week on my way to an important training course when I turned up at the station (after a 20 min bus ride) to find the area in chaos. I then had to get another bus to Kennington station, and I was late. Brixton is such an important South London bus hub which feeds into the tube station that when when something small happens there is a domino effect. Ever since the Underground was conceived by firstly private entrepreneurs then public bodies it was been underinvested in. The current improvements across the network do something to rectify that, but with an exploding local population, TfL are only playing catch up.

michael m

theres always clapham north or clapham common people should buy a bike and cycle to the nearist tube station shows to me they got it to easy and are too lazy to walk to the next tube stations that aint that far away if you can be bothered to walk