TfL Rail is the franchise of two separate railway lines in London and its environs that will form part of the Crossrail service when it opens in stages from Autumn 2019. At that time, the TfL Rail name will be retired and the services will become known as the Elizabeth line. The Autumn 2019 date is approximately nine months later than planned, the Elizabeth line having initially been due to open in December 2018.
|Owner||Transport for London|
|Locale||Greater London and Essex|
|Transit type||Suburban/Commuter rail|
|Number of lines||2|
|Number of stations||23 (18 managed)|
|Began operation||31 May 2015|
|System length||36 miles 54 chains (59.0 km)|
|Track gauge||1,435 mm (4 ft 8 1⁄2 in)|
|Electrification||25 kV AC overhead lines|
TfL Rail was introduced in May 2015 when it took control from Abellio Greater Anglia of the commuter "metro" service between Liverpool Street in central London and Shenfield in Essex. That branch comprises the first 14 stations on the Great Eastern Main Line, with interchange at Shenfield for medium- and long-distance services beyond to East Anglia. In May 2018 TfL Rail also took over operation of the Heathrow Connect service between Paddington in central London and Heathrow Airport to the west (Heathrow Terminal 4 station being the terminus). That route has nine stations. The service is operated by MTR Corporation under contract to Transport for London (TfL). Between May 2016 and May 2017, TfL Rail carried over 47 million passengers on the Shenfield branch.
In June 2013 TfL announced that Arriva, MTR Corporation, Keolis/Go-Ahead Group and National Express had been shortlisted to bid for the concession to operate Crossrail, which was under construction.
MTR Corporation (Crossrail) Ltd was created as a new train operating company and took control of the "metro" service between Liverpool Street and Shenfield from the previous operator, Abellio Greater Anglia, in May 2015. The existing Class 315 trains were re-painted in TfL Rail livery, and appropriate branding, advertising and message boards were added at the 14 stations along the line. Every station is staffed, from the first train to the last of the day.
In May 2018 TfL Rail took over operation of the Heathrow Connect service between Paddington and Heathrow.
The eastern (Shenfield) branch of TfL Rail runs over the existing 20 miles 16 chains (32.5 km) of track on the Great Eastern Main Line between Liverpool Street and Shenfield. The future Crossrail route will retain the use of most of this track, except the portion between Liverpool Street and Stratford, where trains will use new underground tunnels to connect to the central section of the route.
Stations served or managed by TfL Rail:
|Station||Zone||Local authority||Interchange||Managed by||Served by TfL Rail|
|Abbey Wood||4||Royal Greenwich||TfL Rail||No|
|Acton Main Line||3||Ealing||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Chadwell Heath||5||Redbridge||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Forest Gate||3||Newham||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Gidea Park||6||Havering||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Harold Wood||6||Havering||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Hayes & Harlington||5||Hillingdon||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Heathrow Terminal 4||6||Hillingdon||Heathrow Express||Yes|
|Iver||-||South Bucks||TfL Rail||No|
|Liverpool Street||1||City of London||Network Rail||Yes|
|Paddington||1||City of Westminster||Network Rail||Yes|
|Manor Park||3/4||Newham||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Seven Kings||4||Redbridge||TfL Rail||Yes|
|Taplow||-||South Bucks||TfL Rail||No|
|West Ealing||3||Ealing||TfL Rail||Yes|
The typical Monday–Saturday off-peak service pattern on is:
|Liverpool Street to Shenfield||6||Stratford, Maryland, Forest Gate, Manor Park, Ilford, Seven Kings, Goodmayes, Chadwell Heath, Romford, Gidea Park, Harold Wood, Brentwood
During peak times, service frequency is increased and calling patterns are varied, with some stations omitted on certain services.
On Sundays there are typically four trains per hour between Liverpool Street and Shenfield.
|Paddington to Hayes & Harlington||2||Acton Main Line, Ealing Broadway, West Ealing, Southall
|Paddington to Heathrow Terminal 4||2||Ealing Broadway, West Ealing, Hanwell, Southall, Hayes & Harlington, Heathrow Terminals 2 & 3
Skips Hanwell on Sundays
|Heathrow Central to Heathrow Terminal 4||2||360|
|Class||Image||Type||Top speed||Carriages||Number||Routes operated||Built||Years in operation|
|Class 315||EMU||75||120||4||32||Liverpool Street - Shenfield||1980–81||2015–19|
|Class 345 Aventra||90||145||7 and 9||70||Liverpool Street - Shenfield||2015–18||2017–present|
|Class 360 Desiro||100||160||5||Paddington - Heathrow Terminal 4||2002-05||2018–present|
TfL Rail inherited five Class 360 units from Heathrow Connect when it took over operations on 20 May 2018. These trains will be used to operate the existing half-hourly (2tph) service to Heathrow while the Class 345 units will initially supplement this with a half-hourly (2tph) service to Hayes and Harlington, a service formerly operated by Great Western Railway Class 387 units. Initially the Class 345 units will run with 7 cars being extended to the full 9 cars by mid-2019 after Shenfield services begin to serve Paddington.
- "TfL Rail: What we do". Transport for London. Archived from the original on 25 May 2015.CS1 maint: BOT: original-url status unknown (link)
- "MTR Crossrail - Crossrail Rolling Stock".
- Smith, Howard. "Crossrail – Moving to the Operating Railway Rail and Underground Panel 12 February 2015" (PDF). 12 February 2015. Transport for London. Archived (PDF) from the original on 13 February 2015. Retrieved 13 February 2015.
- Jobson, Robert (23 February 2016). "Crossrail named the Elizabeth line: Royal title unveiled as the Queen visits Bond Street station". Evening Standard. Retrieved 23 February 2016.
- "TfL Rail". Transport for London. Retrieved 3 June 2017.
- TfL announces shortlist of bidders to run Crossrail services Crossrail 25 June 2013
- Crossrail shortlist reveals four contenders Rail News 25 June 2013
- TfL announces MTR to run Crossrail services Crossrail 18 July 2014
- MTR Corporation wins £1.4 billion contract to run Crossrail services Rail Technology Magazine 18 July 2014
- "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 29 May 2015. Retrieved 28 May 2015.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
- "Liverpool Street to Shenfield (TfL Rail)" (PDF). Transport for London. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
- "Paddington to Heathrow Airport (TfL Rail)" (PDF). Transport for London. Retrieved 27 May 2019.
- Crossrail rolling stock and depot contract to be awarded to Bombardier Department for Transport 6 February 2014
- Bombardier wins Crossrail train contract Railway Gazette 6 February 2014
- "Crossrail: The Western Approach". London Reconnections.
- Inside Old Oak Common Depot, retrieved 20 May 2018
Media related to TfL Rail at Wikimedia Commons
Abellio Greater Anglia
Greater Anglia franchise
31 May 2015
| Operator of Crossrail concession
2015 – 2019
Great Western Railway
Greater Western franchise
Heathrow Airport Holdings & Great Western Railway
20 May 2018