After oodles of delays, the first of the long awaited electric trains come into service on the Gospel Oak to Barking length of the London Overground this morning. Which by sheer accidental coincidence is exactly nine years to the day after the London Overground extension from Dalston Junction to West Croydon opened.

Today, two new Class 710 electric trains will join the fleet on the  Gospel Oak to Barking line (GOBLIN) in the first step in returning the service on this busy north London line to four trains per hour. The line was cut to just two trains per hour earlier this year due to the delays in delivering the replacement electric trains.

The new electric trains, built by Bombardier in Derby, can carry nearly 700 people, double the capacity of the old diesel trains that had been operating on the line.

Issues with software development on the brand new trains resulted in them being delivered late, but they have now been approved by the rail regulator for passenger service on this line.

Around a third of the drivers on the Gospel Oak to Barking line have now completed driver training. This is sufficient to start operating the new trains and it will continue in parallel until all drivers have completed the course.

More trains will be put into service over time and it is expected the regular 15 minute / four trains per hour frequency will be restored later in the summer.

For regular travellers on the GOBLIN, a month of free travel will be given to customers on the line from September to compensate for the lengthy delays. TfL will be in contact with passengers in the next few weeks to provide more detail on this. The compensation is being funded by train manufacturer.

Eight of the 54 trains on order from Bombardier will be put into use on the London Overground Gospel Oak to Barking line. The remaining will be used on the Watford Junction to Euston route and on London Overground services out of Liverpool Street to Cheshunt, Chingford and Enfield Town, from later this year. They will also be used on the extension to Barking Riverside when it is completed in 2021.

The new trains will debut a new colour scheme and unique seat moquette.


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  1. GT says:

    And uncomfortable longitudonal seats.
    So that you can’t see out of the windows

    • Maurice Reed says:

      Not much to see out the windows anyway.

    • ChrisC says:

      what are you expecting to see?

      Sydney Opera House, perhaps? The Hanging Gardens of Babylon? Herds of wildebeest sweeping majestically -?

  2. DJ says:

    You are literally facing the window opposite. You can see out of the window without turning your head!

    • willtbn says:

      But you might make (scary) eye contact with someone opposite!

    • Jeremy says:

      This. The entire of the Overground as longitudinal seating, just like the very vast majority of the Tube. Getting to work is more important than the perfect view, and the Gospel Oak – Barking line has few stretches worthy of a Swiss-style panoramic car anyway.

  3. JP says:

    Read a book.

  4. Poggs says:

    You win the Internet

  5. Poggs says:

    (which was to ChrisC)

  6. Alexi Brailey says:

    If I’m not mistaken, the colour scheme and seat moquette aren’t new or unique, they’re already present on the refurbished class 378s on the East London Line.

  7. James Ellis says:

    I’m sure I saw some Wildebeest last time I went to Barking…….

  8. Andy A says:

    Poor design compared to the Great Northern class 717.

    No overhead luggage racks
    No luggage racks by the doors
    No forward / backward facing seating
    No power points (only usb)

    • Adam says:

      This train is designed for short commuter railway routes, there isn’t space for luggage racks or front & backwards facing seats. And are you really complaining about the power points being USB only? There weren’t any power points on the previous trains. Have you ever ridden a London Overground train before?

  9. S says:

    How do people who have the Goblin line included in their zone 2 – 6 travelcard benefit from the free travel? In other words how will TFL know who to contact to offer this free travel to, I can’t belive they will contact anyone?

  10. Rog Laker says:

    So how many potential users of the GOBLIN are going to boycott it because of all these manifest deficiencies, compared with the numbers who simply want a reliable, regular means of getting across North London more quickly and conveniently than any other transport option?

  11. Philip Mernick says:

    They were running three trains an hour when I used the line last week.

  12. Bobnessuk says:

    You jest surely?

    I’ve always felt ‘The Goblin Line’ was a small scale version of ‘Crossrail’.

    Maybe this means Crossrail will open soon?

  13. AndyC Gobliner says:

    I’m visiting the goblin line this evening. I might even try out the usb and report back. Hopefully it will let me play music through the train speakers… Is anyone knowledgable enough to know what times the new trains are running from gospel oak after 6pm? (Or the other way at 11pm)?

  14. sD says:

    Four trains an hour isn’t enough! There’s no problem with crowding, it’s frequency. If they close that proxy level crossing at Higham’s Park they could. I’ve lived here my whole life, and it would make no difference if they closed that thing and people could just drive around.

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