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Gospel Oak to Barking Overground Closures

The Gospel Oak to Barking (GOBLIN) Overground line is about to have some major work done to it so that instead of it being diesel, it will be an electric line, and then longer electric trains will run on the branch.

In order for this work to happen though, there is a staggered closure taking place, and we don’t think the way that the publicity has been done is here is very clear.  It focuses on what is closed rather than what is open, meaning that your brain has to stop and think harder to work out the reverse of what they’ve told you (what’s not working) for you then to realise what is working.

Here’s what the TfL page shows you:

GOBLIN Closure

GOBLIN Closure

See how quickly you can work from that what is open, and not closed!

Similarly confusing signs appear at stations along the line itself, as well as on the new June 2016 Tube Map which is about to come out where the dreaded ‘daggers’ make an appearance and you have to refer to the key to try and figure out what it means.

Instead, we’ve come up with our own simple graphic showing what is open which we think is much easier to understand at a glance.

Any chance TfL, of doing something like this in future?

Easier to Understand

Easier to Understand


12 May 16

South Tottenham Step Free

Just in time for the line to be … closed for several months whilst it’s electrified, step-free access has come to South Tottenham station on the Overground with the addition of two new lifts.

The ticketing area has been improved too with a new gate line, ticket machines, a bike rack and even a nice garden is being built.  But as from June of this year, trains will only run to Gospel Oak, and then from September the whole line will be shut whilst it is converted so that longer electric trains can run upon it, and not the two-car diesel ones that are there at the moment.

Updated 3D map to follow!

Lifts at South Tottenham

Lifts at South Tottenham

06 May 16

Battersea Park on Overground Carriage Maps

Last month, we were on an Overground train to Clapham Junction at the weekend which was suddenly diverted.

“This train will now be terminating at Battersea Park” announced the driver helpfully. Except .. it’s not very helpful, is it? That’s all they said – they didn’t announce any other stops that it would still be calling at or where Battersea Park is.

“This train will call at Wandsworth Road, and then go to Battersea Park instead of Clapham Junction” would have been a much more useful announcement,

So this Station Master spent time talking to people telling them where Battersea Park is on the map, because the carriage maps on the Overground doesn’t show it.

Except that it now does! As of last week, we noticed that new carriage maps have been put up individually showing all the different lines of the Overground – a bit better – but arguably more confusing because surely the carriage map of the line should pertain to the line that you’re on?

Again, it’s just added fuel to the fire that the Overground lines need to be coloured differently, and just to have the carriage maps on the lines on which the trains now actually run. But yes .. Battersea Park is shown as a pecked line ‘Limited Service’ on some in-carriage Overground maps.





15 Feb 16

When TfL Take over all suburban London

Maybe the Tube map will look something like this? (From James O’Malley on twitter)

A very orange map

A very orange map

Actually, for a more comprehensive article on the proposed new changes, London Reconnections has the scoop.


23 Jan 16

New Whitechapel 3D

Here ya go then, here’s the new 3D map for Whitechapel – where there’s a new entrance/exit at the western end of the station, and then from the back of the westbound platform there’s a new corridor and steps down to the southbound Overground platforms – which look like they’re going to be a permanent addition and not a temporary one!

The new 3D map will be released in the next update to Station Master.

Whitechapel 3D

Whitechapel 3D

21 Jan 16

New Whitechapel

Farewell old Whitechapel, HELLO to the new! The new temporary entrance opened yesterday, with it being at the western end of the sub-surface platforms.  Getting to and from the the Overground platforms now take a little bit longer!  We’re in the process of drawing up a new 3D map, and will have it in the next update of the App.

New Whitechapel Ticket Hall

New Whitechapel Ticket Hall

19 Jan 16

Whitechapel Closure

So from Monday 18th January ‘Until late 2018(says the blurb) the ticket hall at Whitechapel is moving whilst preparation work for Crossrail take in place – including building a new step-free access, larger, ticket hall.

But, it actually closed Friday night and has been closed all this weekend, and it means that that’s the last chance you’ve had to see the up-and-down stairs and corridors that Whitechapel has, and when it opens again in over two year time it’s going to look a lot different to this…

Whitechapel Corridors

Whitechapel Corridors

In the meantime, the new entrance is further west, turn up Court Street, and it’s on Durward Street. Interestingly, we think this makes the walking time connection between Whitechapel and Bethnal Green on the Central line shorter than between Shoreditch High Street and Liverpool Street.  We’ve quite often changed trains between the Overground and Central line using this latter method, but now it looks like changing at Whitechapel will be quicker…

16 Jan 16

Ready for the Overground

Remember how when the Tube map changed back in May, an extra kink was put into the Central line (on the online and posted editions only) to make it Crossrail-ready? Well, something else has happened with the new January 2016 map.

(Also, let’s note the fact that Vauxhall has got a blue ‘accessibility blob’ even though the lift is not yet operational, and so the map is wrong – Vauxhall is not an accessible station)

The Tube map last year on the southern bit of the Overground around the New Cross area looked like this:

2015 Map

2015 Map










After Surrey Quays, the line went straight down to New Cross, with Clapham / West Croydon / Crystal Palace trains all following the same, then splitting with Queens Road Peckham on the Clapham branch and New Cross Gate heading straight down south.

Well, now with the new January 2016 Tube map, it’s changed and has become a ‘3-way split’, here:

2016 Map

2016 Map



So why have they done this, you might ask?

It can only be because of a new Overground station that’s coming between Queens Road Peckham and Surrey Quays – namely Surrey Canal Road.  Well – except it isn’t any more it’s may end up being called ‘New Bermondsey‘ instead, and work was expected to have started by now, but we don’t think it has!

But that’s some forward planning by the Tube map designers to get the name of the Overground in early, just as they’ve done with moving the Central line to accomodate Crossrail when it appears on map.


Or will it be called New Bermondsey?

Or will it be called New Bermondsey?

05 Jan 16

Original Overground Complete

When we set out to draw 3D maps of all Tube stations we soon realised that we’d have to do all the Overground and DLR too – and that meant a lot more work!  So long in fact, that during that time MORE stations got added to the Overground, all the services out of Liverpool Street, but we haven’t added those onto Station Master (yet?) so there’s currently no plans to draw 3D maps for them.

But we have (finally!) finished ALL THE OTHER Overground stations when we took a trip to Watford this week, so that we could sketch out Watford Junction and turn it into a 3D map, it’ll be in the next update of the App – of course.

Watford Junction 3D Map

20 Nov 15

New Overground Carriage Maps

With the addition of the new Overground stations in London, it was only a matter of time before the carriage maps got updated, and they look like this …

Overground Carriage Map

Overground Carriage Map

Which is quite frankly a bit of a mess, because now the whole orangey-network of Overground lines have been squeezed into a shape that is not suitable for them. But most importantly, the topological layout has been completely distorted, and there’s no way that you would use this as any sort of journey planner for the Overground.

Why not just put Tube maps (which should be called the TfL map anyway, because that’s what it really is) up in Overground trains, which would help people plan much better journeys.  By having Overground lines up in carriages shown only on those trains, it might make you take a journey purely by Overground that would be much quicker if you used instead used a tube line!

It’s a right old mess … so much so that you should read Diamond Geezer where he calls it “TfL’s worst map”, which is hard to disagree with.

30 Aug 15