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Ilford North MP Wes Streeting calls for TfL to act on ‘unbearable overcrowding’ on the Central Line

PUBLISHED: 10:17 13 October 2016 | UPDATED: 10:18 13 October 2016

Commuters at South Woodford slammed the Central Line service this morning (Picture: PA Images)

Commuters at South Woodford slammed the Central Line service this morning (Picture: PA Images)

PA/Press Association Images

An MP has slammed Tube bosses for “unbearable overcrowding” on the Central line, which saw a pregnant woman unable to even reach the platform.

Wes Streeting manages to get a seat in May 2015, now he says the Central Line is 'unbearably overcrowded'Wes Streeting manages to get a seat in May 2015, now he says the Central Line is 'unbearably overcrowded'

Wes Streeting, who represents Ilford North, called on Transport for London (TfL) to “come up with an action plan rather than reducing services”.

The Labour MP was speaking after commuters complained of huge crowds at South Woodford station on Tuesday, with no announcements and major delays between trains.

A pregnant woman could not reach the platform at the Tube stop, such were the masses of people queueing.

TfL blamed a faulty train in Loughton, and the service was listed as “good” all morning.

“I have been commuting on the Central line for about 15 years and I have noticed it get particularly worse recently,” Mr Streeting told the Recorder.

“When I was elected [in May 2015] every morning at Barkingside I would get a seat, and by the time it got to Wanstead it used to be really busy.

“Now it’s unbearably overcrowded when I get on.”

In August TfL reduced the number of rush hour services on the Hainault Loop, which Mr Streeting described as “unacceptable”.

He continued: “Commuters in outer London boroughs currently seem to be paying more than inner London boroughs, and get a worse service.

“This is an issue I plan to raise with the Mayor of London and the transport minister.”

One commuter told the Recorder he was going to move to a different area to avoid using the Central line.

He said: “Luckily I got a seat [on Tuesday] but it was anarchic towards Liverpool Street, clusters of commuters huddled around door entrances on the platform, which is very dangerous.”

A spokesman explained TfL moved the trains from the Hainault Loop to the Epping branch to reduce overcrowding.

He said: “We introduced a new timetable in August that will provide more trains for thousands of Central line customers on the Epping branch, which is one of the busiest stretches of the line and where there is greater demand.

“Unfortunately this means there are two fewer trains in the morning peak between Woodford and Hainault going directly to central London, but customers will be able to change at Woodford to continue their journeys into central London.”

“Over the next few years we will be investing £130million on our Central line trains which will improve their reliability.”


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