TfL starts search for next operator to run Overground

09 April 2015

Transport for London (TfL) has issued a notice with the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) to select the next train operator to run London Overground services from November 2016, with bidders having until mid-May to register their interest.

Under the new 2016 concession TfL will bring in new trains, higher frequency services and a continuing programme of station upgrades. The contract will also include options to introduce an all-night service at weekends and to extend Gospel Oak to Barking line services to Barking Riverside in 2019. The new operator will be responsible for supporting these improvements and will be expected to continue to improve London Overground's performance levels.

Jonathan Fox, TfL's Director of London Rail, said: 'This is a very exciting time for London Overground as we expand our fleet and serve new parts of the Capital. At end of May, we will take over the running of local services out of Liverpool Street station to north east London, which will also come under the new concession. Customers can look forward to new air-conditioned walk-through trains, which will start operating from 2018, and will benefit from stations being staffed at all times when trains are running.

'This bidding process is vital to ensure London Overground's performance is maintained and improved to make services even better for our customers.'

London Overground will take over the operation of routes running from Liverpool Street station to Enfield Town, Cheshunt (via Seven Sisters) and Chingford, on 31 May, as well as services between Romford and Upminster. These routes will be part of the contract now open to tender and which the successful bidder will operate from 13 November 2016.

London Overground carries over 135 million customers a year, a five-fold increase over the original numbers since its launch in 2007. With the inclusion of the additional routes due to join the London Overground network in May, this number will rise to over 176 million customers a year, equating to more than 585,000 a day.

Notes to Editors:

  • LOROL (London Overground Rail Operations Ltd) currently operate services and will continue to do so until their concession ends in November 2016.Notice of the new contract has been placed in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU).
  • The bidding process will see a short list of entrants in summer 2015 followed by a competitive bidding stage with the new contract awarded in summer 2016.
  • The next concession contract will be let on substantially the same terms as the current concession for an initial period of 7.5 years with an option to extend by up to two years at TfL's discretion.
  • Under the new contract, TfL will continue to be responsible for setting the fares and marketing the services and will retain the revenue generated by ticket sales to be reinvested in improving the transport network. TfL will also retain all non-ticket revenue at stations including advertising, retail and car parks. The operator will be responsible for ticket retailing and for undertaking revenue protection activities.
  • Also on 31 May this year, services between Liverpool Street and Shenfield will join the TfL transport network. This will be the first phase of the introduction of Crossrail, which will be fully integrated with TfL services. Customers will benefit from stations staffed at all times trains are operating as well as better accessibility provision with turn up and go services being offered for those who need ramps to board trains.