This abandoned London train line could soon be brought back to life

Sometimes the dead can come back to life. In this case, a west London train line that was last used over 100 years ago could be resurrected. 

A new Overground line called the West London Orbital could repurpose train tracks that stopped carrying passengers in 1902. Only using existing train lines, the Orbital would make use of tracks such as the Dudding Hill loop, which runs from Acton to Cricklewood and currently only takes freight trains.

TfL estimates that more than 11 million people a year would use the service, and that it’d bring new rail connections to north and west London. New stations would be added along the line, but the locations of these stations aren’t yet clear.  

The Orbital could also help create 120,000 jobs along the route and potentially 16,000 new homes, according to Andrew Dakers from West London Business.

Shama Tatler, the deputy leader of Brent Council, called the plan ‘a no-brainer’. She said: ‘The investment isn’t as big as other projects as the line is already there, so it wouldn’t mean huge upheaval for residents and businesses and it means that we can actually invest with the private sector, public money as well. The land isn’t public, so we need private investors to come and support our ambitions here.’

If funding can be raised and the scheme is approved, services could start in the early 2030s. 

Elsewhere on Time Out London, the DLR could be extending all the way to Thamesmead (yes, after years of hype, it might actually happen) and you’ve been warned: the Piccadilly line will partially close next week

Did you see that Red Bull’s legendary Soapbox Race returns to Alexandra Palace this summer?

Listen to Time Out’s brilliant podcast ‘Love Thy Neighbourhood’: the newest episode with Noomi Rapace in Portobello is out now.

Stay in the loop: sign up to our free Time Out London newsletter for the best of the city, straight to your inbox.