Easter Sunday saw thousands of people catching a London Overground train to London Bridge for the first time ever.

It was a special service added by Transport for London to provide a service into central London on a day when the normal Southern trains wouldn’t be able to run due to engineering works elsewhere. So, on a Sunday morning, a London Overground train pulled into London Bridge station for the first time, and would spend the rest of the day shuttling back and forth between West Croydon and London Bridge.

Unsurprisingly, as a one-off service, there was a festive atmosphere, with staff handing out mini Easter eggs. A number of rail staff who had been involved in the test run a few weeks ago also turned up to see the fruits of their labours.

What was noticable, though, was the unusually large number of people who were smiling when they got off the train. Yes, some were the expected train geeks, but genuinely, there seemed to be more smiles than is usually seen when a train pulls into a train platform, so the idea of providing a London Overground train into London Bridge was a popular one.

Arguably, many would have just seen a train to London Bridge and got on it not knowing that it was a special service, but would have noticed that their usual old train was newer than expected.

The Easter Sunday special was a one-off and not intended to be a regular service, but it could be back in the future to fill gaps in the timetable when there are engineering works again. So, ahead of that possibility, the Overground map diagrams in the stations along the route have been tweaked to add the London Bridge spur as an occasional service.

Judging by Sunday’s special service, this could be the first time that people actually look forward to engineering works on the railway, as the replacement train service is actually better than the usual service.


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  1. Andrea Vail says:

    For those of us using Penge West and Anerley stations, which lost their Southern service to London Bridge, this would be huge if it was a permanent thing.

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