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Essex Thameside

What is happening now?

In July 2014 Transport for London (TfL) announced its intention to award the contract to operate Crossrail services to MTR Corporation (Crossrail) Limited (MTR). The concession is similar to the existing London Overground inner-suburban contract and will run for eight years, with an option to extend to 10 years.


This is the culmination of a competitive procurement process to appoint an operator that began last year with four shortlisted bidders announced in June 2013.

MTR has experience of working with Transport for London and, along with Arriva UK Trains, operate as LOROL to run London Overground services. From May 2015 MTR have been running the stopping services between Liverpool Street and Shenfield, previously operated by Abellio Greater Anglia. The new operator will work closely with TfL, Bombardier and Crossrail Limited on the introduction of new trains which will start to be used from 2017. The route through Canary Wharf, the City and the West End will open in late 2018, with the full route running from late 2019.

The full Crossrail operation will include rail services running in tunnels under central London. This central section is still under construction with the cross-London services due to commence in 2018. Heathrow Connect services are expected to transfer to Crossrail in May 2018. By December 2019 the Crossrail service is expected to operate to Heathrow, Maidenhead and Reading and will replace the current suburban services provided by First Great Western (FGW) to and from Paddington.

Our role in the franchising process

Transport Focus meets regularly with TfL to discuss the development of Crossrail.  We will also be working with them to assess how the National Rail Passenger Survey (NRPS) will be used to measure passenger satisfaction with the services.

London TravelWatch will also have an important role to play, as most of the Crossrail operation falls within their area.

To view our National Rail Passenger Survey reports or to access these and our appeal complaints data through our Data Explorer tool, please click on the links below. There will be no data available until Crossrail begins to operate but the Greater Anglia and London Overground Rail Operations Ltd (LOROL) data may be useful.


NRPS                                                                           Data Explorer


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