The gatelines at Walthamstow tube has moved! It used to be at the top of the escalator, but ever since the National Rail station became part of the Overground, it obviously made sense to make the station all ‘as one’ to allow you to just tap in once for interchanging, so there is now a new gateline for the tube on the corridor to the bus station, and new barrier gates either side of the Overground platforms … meaning that there are just now these marks on the floor where the old gatelines for the Tube entrance used to be!
Whilst the BBC speculates that Night Tube may not happen altogether, we can bring you more exciting news – Finsbury Park station is finally getting a gateline!
It will therefore lose its tag of ‘busiest station on the network without ticket barriers’, but we bet it makes a difference to revenue figures. The main entrance (pictured below) as well as the Wells Terrace and Seven Sisters Road entrance are all getting ticket barriers. They’ve been installed, but not switched on yet – but expect it to be during November.
The future is here … as the TfL effort to get staff out from behind ticket office windows and into the ticket office areas to talk to people instead has started to happen.
This was Queensway station on the Central Line earlier this week, one of the first stations where the ticket office has now closed, and staff are out on their feet instead.
A sign up on the windows of the old ticket office told us that “Work to install additional ticket machines and to upgrade one of the two lifts will continue until May. The station will remain open during this period. The ticket windows at this station will not reopen”.
There are more closures of ticket offices scheduled for later this year. We’ll be keeping watch on how many, if, and when new ticket machines get installed, and (sadly) updating our data to remove ‘Ticket office opening times’ from our database.
South Wimbledon station also closed its ticket office this week, and there are more closures to come throughout February. Most interestingly of all, we noticed that Shepherd’s Bush on the Central Line is one of those, and that it always has queues at the ticket office whenever we walk past …
The proliferation of new style ‘Yellow on Black’ signs that first appeared at King’s Cross a while ago are now starting to spread to the rest of the Underground. London Bridge, we noticed when passing through the other day, is now full of them. We’d go so far to say that there are too many and they are distracting from all the regular signage that you’re used to.
But we also spotted something else – a new entrance/exit to the ticket hall! It’s linked to The Shard, and at the moment, it’s just an arcade of retail outlets which have yet to be let out, so there’s nothing really going on, but it is marginally quicker to go this way if you want to exit by The Shard.
The tit-for-tat games appeared in last night’s Evening Standard – the same issue in which TfL had a full page open letter from Mike Brown saying that no jobs would be lost during the changes, it also featured a column from Bob Crow demanding that no jobs would be lost during the changes.
It seems we all have to suffer whilst the latest round of political games is played out.
Here’s one take on it:
Boris, Mike Brown and the heads of TfL want to move ticket office staff out onto the front line. Let’s say that 100% of stations have ticket office right now (they don’t, 12 stations out of 270 already don’t have ticket offices), they’re saying they want almost NO stations to have staffed ticket offices.
The unions (rightly, as their job) are going to fight this, and they’ll probably end up being met half way in a compromise – around half of the ticket offices will go, and half will stay open.
But what if that’s what the bosses of TfL actually want the whole time? But they know that if they propose only half to close, then the unions will argue for compromise, and (say) three quarters will remain open.
So the TfL bosses go for the whole thing – complete closure, the unions argue against it, we all have to wait whilst the strikes are played out, and eventually they agree on only half of them being closed. The unions smile because they think they’ve staved off complete closure, and the TfL bosses secretly smile because they got what they wanted all along.
It’s just that whilst this happens, several million Londoners are massively inconvenienced for 48 hours.
All these changes occur as part of a new slogan ‘Fit for the Future’, that TfL are now using, as we discovered in this awkwardly-presented Mike Brown video, in which he lists five commitments. We can think of five of our own, but watch the video first and we’ll have more on that tomorrow …
The Station Master is spending a lot of time on the Hammersmith & City Line this week, so it didn’t take us long to notice the familiar blue hoarding and a million construction safety notices to spot that some new works are taking place.
Seems like the barbers shop at Hammersmith Station (C&H) is no more – perhaps everyone is buying their haircuts off the internet instead? – and so LU are turning it into a new entrance/exit on Beadon road to be complete by July of this year. A new ticket office and gateline? That should help – it does get crowded when an entire train turns out and tries to get through the three barriers.
This does make us wonder though whether they’ll make one side the way-in only, and one said the way-out only, which’ll mean a slightly longer walk if you’re connecting from the the Hammersmith (D&P) station.
Oh. And did you spot the deliberate mistake back there? We said ‘ticket office’. There will of course be no ticket office, just a bank of ticket machines ..