TSSA welcomes Crossrail opening

TfL signage in Stratford station ©Donnacha DeLong

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has welcomed news that the Elizabeth line in London will open later this month but repeated calls for public inquiry into the costs and delays of the project which runs east to west across the capital.

Transport for London (TfL) has announced that the central part of the line - Abbey Wood to Paddington - will open, subject to final safety approvals, the week prior to the Queen’s jubilee celebrations on 24 May.

The Elizabeth line was originally due to open in December 2018. The original budget was £14.8bn and has since risen to almost £19bn.

Commenting, Cortes said: “There’s no doubt that the Elizabeth line and the entire Crossrail project is a welcome addition to our capital’s rail network and I’m delighted to see it open at long last.

“However, we must not overlook the delays and huge overspend. I have said before that we need a public inquiry to better understand these failings and to make sure contractors and not Londoners carry the can for the final bill.

“The new line will boost rail capacity across our capital city, which must be the driver of our economic recovery from the pandemic.

“Our members have played a key role in getting the line open and will be critical in the safe and efficient service it provides.

“With that in mind its time this Tory government at Westminster acts to make sure Transport for London (TfL) has a long term, properly financed, settlement instead of politically motivated short-term deals we have seen of late.”