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Publication date: 19 April 2011
Author: Transport for London (TfL)

London Underground racks up record ridership figures

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New passenger figures released today show that London Underground services carried record numbers during the 2010/11 financial year, exceeding 1.1 billion for the first time.

During the year ending 31 March the Tube saw some 42 million more passenger journeys than the previous year.

The network also broke its record for the number of passengers carried over a four week period – topping 90.6 million in the four weeks leading up to Christmas.

Overall, London Underground has seen a rise in passenger numbers of 14 per cent in seven years and 40 per cent in 15 years.

The record ridership figures come as London Underground continues apace with the biggest upgrade in the Tube’s 148-year history, replacing signalling, trains and track and rebuilding key stations to increase capacity on the network by 30 per cent and give passengers quicker, more comfortable and more reliable journeys.

The upgrades of the Jubilee and Victoria lines are nearing completion, and full upgrade works will start on the Northern line once work on the Jubilee line is complete.

A preferred bidder has also been announced for the upgrade of the Metropolitan, District, Circle and Hammersmith & City lines.

New walk-through air conditioned S-Stock trains are already being introduced to these ‘Sub-Surface’ lines, with the first new trains – which replace some of the UK’s oldest serving rolling stock – currently running on the Metropolitan line.

Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, said: “These record breaking passenger numbers are proof of how vital our Tube system is, which is why it was so important I persuaded the Government to protect funding for the upgrades. We are running more trains than ever before while at the same time carrying out a massive amount of engineering work across the network.

“We are investing in new trains, new signalling and new track, which will be key if we are to be able to keep up with the ravenous demand for Tube services of our ever increasing population.”

Mike Brown, Managing Director of London Underground and London Rail, said: “London Underground’s network has exceeded 1.1 billion for the first time in its 148-year history, as it plays a vital role in supporting London’s recovery from the recession.

“The combination of this huge increase in passengers and a reliance on some of the oldest railway infrastructure in the world does of course present a number of challenges for the Tube, which is why our work to upgrade it is so critical for London.

“Over the next decade we will deliver 30 per cent more capacity through the introduction of new trains, signalling and track and we are also rebuilding some of our busiest stations, including Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road and Victoria. Over half of the Victoria line fleet is now comprised of brand new trains, and the first ever air-conditioned trains on the Underground are now serving the Metropolitan line.”

London Underground is determined to keep disruption to passengers to a minimum whilst it upgrades the network, but the huge amount of work that needs to be carried out cannot be done in the four hours at night when trains are not running.

London Underground’s Tube Upgrade Plan is explained on the TfL website and across the network, ensuring that customers are informed about planned works and are given alternative options.

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