The Elizabeth line now runs directly into central London – so what?

Published on: Monday, 14 November 2022
Last updated: Monday, 4 September 2023

  • Your journey

Have you been on the Elizabeth line yet? It’s brilliant! The underground architecture is very cool with very instagrammable curves, bends, wide corridors, long escalators and some funicular-style glass lifts. The brand new trains are light, spacious and air-conditioned. But the real beauty of the Elizabeth line is the way it cuts down journey times across London – especially for customers connecting from the Greater Anglia network. And now that Bond Street and the central tunnels are connected, it’s even better and faster with step-free access available at all stations.

Bond street tunnel

Bond Street

The Elizabeth line is connecting us East Anglians with the West of England and beyond in super quick time. From Liverpool Street you can go direct to Paddington in around 12 minutes for onward connections to the West Country and Devon and Cornwall, compared to a journey time of over 30 minutes on the Circle or Hammersmith and City lines, with just five stops compared to nine. Or stay on the Elizabeth line for convenience and go on to Heathrow Terminal 2 or 3 in around 32 minutes or Reading in around an hour.

But you don’t need to go far afield for the Elizabeth line to improve your travelling experience – travelling into central London is so fast, with stations at Tottenham Court Road and Bond Street. You can catch an earlier train home after going to a show or the theatre in London by travelling back to Liverpool Street on the Elizabeth line. Six minutes and two stops from Tottenham Court Road in airconditioned comfort and more space, compared to at least ten mins and five stops on the Central line.

Elizabeth line train carriage

The service is now running with 22 trains per hour in peak times between Paddington and Whitechapel – that’s a train every three to four minutes - and it’s now open on Sundays, too.

Graph detailing the Elizabeth line

What about the rest of the Elizabeth line, isn’t it at Shenfield and Canary Wharf too?

Elizabeth line services from Shenfield will now be stopping at all stations to Paddington. A few Elizabeth line trains will still run to Liverpool Street’s national rail platforms in the mornings and evenings, and at other times occasionally.

You can change at Whitechapel station for services towards further west to Reading or Heathrow. For a faster journey from Shenfield, stay on your Greater Anglia service until Liverpool Street and then connect onto the Elizabeth line – just head towards the Underground behind the cashpoints at Liverpool Street to find the entrance.

Another section goes to Abbey Wood, in south east London, via Canary Wharf. In fact you can get to Canary Wharf from Liverpool Street now in just six minutes and two stops on the Elizabeth line – a journey which previously involved a train or bus ride to Stratford to connect with the Jubilee line or DLR.

I use a wheelchair, will it be easy for me to travel on the Elizabeth line?

The Elizabeth line makes it much easier to travel into central London and beyond if you use a wheelchair – or if you have a pushchair, or heavy luggage.

Every single station on the Elizabeth line is accessible and they are staffed for the whole time it is open, so you can just turn and go with assistance on hand to help you board. At stations outside of Paddington to Abbey Wood and at Heathrow, staff with manual boarding ramps will be available to assist with boarding trains. There are spaces for wheelchairs on the train, with the fifth carriage featuring dedicated spaces. As with all TfL trains there are no toilets on board – however there are toilets at the majority of stations.

Wheelchair access on the elizabeth line

Pic credit: Grant Pritchard

Will I be able to use my Greater Anglia ticket on the Elizabeth line?

Just as with other TfL services you’ll need a ticket to ride the Elizabeth line. You can either touch in with your Oyster Card or contactless card or you can buy a through ticket either online, on the Greater Anglia app or from a ticket machine or ticket office.

Liverpool Street sign

Liverpool Street station