Crossrail making tracks for Hemel Hempstead and Tring as extension proposals are announced

Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin
Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin

Transport secretary Patrick McLoughlin is expected to announce proposals to extend Crossrail services into Hemel Hempstead and Tring later today.

Patrick McLoughlin will address workers and apprentices at a Crossrail site in central London and reveal details of a study into the potential extension of Crossrail to Hertfordshire.

The move could see trains to Heathrow terminals 1, 2 and 3 made available from Hemel Hempstead, with a change at Old Oak Common, and services to Bond Street and Farringdon run from Tring.

Mr McLoughlin said: “As part of our ambitious plans to modernise the transport network, I can announce today that we are looking at proposals to extend Crossrail services even further by opening a new route to key destinations in Hertfordshire.

“The plan would provide flexibility and reliability while we build HS2 into Euston.

“It would make it easier to get on with the massive job of rebuilding the station so it matches the amazing standard of King’s Cross and St Pancras – because everyone who uses Euston now knows it isn’t up to scratch, and it would be a huge boost to Crossrail and London commuters.

“We’re going to examine, right away, how we can run extra services direct into the city and through to Canary Wharf from key stations like Tring, Hemel Hempstead, Harrow and Watford – without the frustrating need to change at Euston.”

It is expected that the proposals would have the added benefit of reducing congestion at Euston, specifically for passengers who use the southbound Northern and Victoria lines.

HS2 Limited are now being asked to work closely with the Crossrail sponsors to explore the plans in more detail.

According to the secretary of state, preliminary analysis has indicated that the link could potentially reduce journey times to central London by up to 15 minutes, but he stresses that any final decisions would be subject to a wide range of considerations including affordability.