A new timetable for the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) is coming into effect in a couple of weeks time, which will see more frequent services on all routes, especially in the evenings.

The higher frequency services will also run half an hour longer on all routes in both the morning and evening peaks, as the peak hour time is extended.  The morning peak service will end at 10am instead of 9:30am, and the evening peak service will end at 7:30pm instead of 7pm.

Although there are changes to the peak hours services, the main changes are in the evenings, by increasing the frequency of services so that people spend less time hanging around waiting for a train.

Amongst the changes, additional services are being introduced such as direct Stratford to Lewisham trains during the evening peak for the first time. Evening frequencies between Canning Town and Beckton will also be doubled, with Stratford to Canary Wharf services doubled on Saturday nights.

Last September, a shuttle service between Canning Town and Beckton (in addition to the existing Tower Gateway to Beckton services) was introduced, which doubled the frequency during the peaks and daytime off peak. With the new timetable, these services will continue into the evening until 11:30pm on weekdays (instead of 7:30pm) and 10pm on Saturdays (instead of 7:30pm). This means during these times trains will run every five minutes rather than every 10 minutes between Canning Town and Beckton.

Customers using stations between Stratford and Canary Wharf on Saturday evenings will also get trains every five minutes (rather than every 10 minutes) until 10pm rather than until 7:30pm.

A lot of these changes have been delivered by running more frequent 2-car trains instead of the full length 3-car trains, the aim being partially to increase the capacity of the network, but mainly to speed up journeys by reducing how long people have to wait to catch a train.

The new timetable comes into effect from Monday 15th May 2023.

Seb Dance, Deputy Mayor for Transport said: “After some incredibly challenging years, ridership on the Tube and DLR is beginning to return to pre-pandemic levels, And I am pleased that changes coming in to the DLR timetable in May will mean people travelling around east London will now benefit from additional services and quicker, easier, more frequent journeys.

“With the entire DLR fleet also being updated over the coming years, this is just one of the ways the Mayor and TfL are continuing to improve London’s world-class public transport network, which is key for to building a better, more efficient London for everyone.”


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  1. Keith says:

    Has there been any further developments on the proposals to close Tower Gateway and the potential expansion from Bank? I’m guessing the pandemic and TFL finances have probably put things on hold.

    • Tommy says:

      I think that’s still a long way away, Bank is at capacity as it is with the Lewisham and Woolwich trains so it would require a lot of work. There’s not really much need anyway, especially now Custom House has direct access to the Lizzie Line. Those on the branch who would otherwise need to go to specifically bank just have to change at Shadwell.

  2. JP says:

    One of the biggest issues regarding capacity at Bank on the DLR was the time taken to clear the platform of alighting passengers before the station upgrade was completed. This is no longer the case I would say, especially given that the Elizabeth line now provides a third rail route out of Canary Wharf. All that said, Tower Gateway is still a handy station for quite a few people and provides a very useful alternative terminus when Bank is closed.

    • Keith says:

      A few years ago Fenchurch Street were looking to expand, and it was likely any expansion would swallow up the Tower Gateway site.

      I believe one potential solution from the DLR expansion proposals was to add in a Tower Hill stop on the tunnel to Bank, as apparently it goes just under and slightly south of the existing underground station. There was also talk of the expanded Fenchurch station having a passageway to Tower Hill underground.

      Personally I could envisage this aspect potentially happening, however I don’t think most of the northern/western expansion of the DLR is necessary now the Elizabeth line is live. Adding a stop for Tower Hill in the tunnel would allow a direct connection to the District/Circle line, without needing to change at Bank-Monument station.

      Though preferably if this new station were to be added in the Bank tunnel it should be done before Fenchurch expands. That way the DLR could still terminate at Tower Gateway whilst the necessary changes are made in the tunnel.

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