London Overground route through Enfield given unique new name

The new name was chosen to reflect a particular industry that developed in areas of London the line runs through

Southbury Station is on the Weaver Line of the London Overground
Southbury Station, on the Weaver Line of London Overground

The London Overground route which runs between Liverpool Street and Enfield Town, Cheshunt and Chingford stations is set to be renamed the ‘Weaver Line’ to reflect the industrial heritage of one of the areas it runs through.

In what Transport for London (TfL) describes a “historic re-imagining of London’s public transport network”, each of the capital’s six overground lines are being given a unique name and line colour for the first time.

It’s hoped the changes will make it easier for customers to navigate London’s transport network while also celebrating the city’s diverse culture and history. Currently, as well as having no individual names for each line, the London Overground also uses the same colour – orange – for every single route.

But each route will now be represented by a new line name and colour on the tube map, on train line diagrams, at stations and on digital journey planning tools, such as the TfL Go app.  However, the orange roundel will continue to be used across the London Overground network.

For the routes which originate at Liverpool Street Station and branch out to Cheshunt, Enfield Town and Chingford, TfL has chosen the name ‘Weaver Line’.

Explaining the name choice, it says: “The Weaver Line runs through Liverpool Street, Spitalfields, Bethnal Green and Hackney – areas of London known for their textile trade, shaped over the centuries by diverse migrant communities and individuals.”

The routes cross over and run either side of the Lea Valley and are referred to within the rail industry as the Lea Valley Lines, but this name choice was rejected by TfL.

The Weaver Line will be shown with maroon parallel lines on the tube map.   

Other names chosen include the ‘Lioness Line’ for the route between Euston and Watford, which runs through Wembley and has been named after the England women’s football team; the ‘Mildmay Line’ for the route between Stratford and Richmond/Clapham Junction, named after a small charitable hospital in Shoreditch; the ‘Windrush Line’ between Highbury & Islington and Clapham Junction/New Cross/Crystal Palace/West Croydon, which runs through areas with strong Caribbean ties; and the ‘Suffragette Line’ which runs between Gospel Oak and Barking Riverside and has been named after the East End’s pivotal role in winning women the vote.

Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said: “This is a hugely exciting moment, transforming how we think about London’s transport network. 

“Giving each of the overground lines distinct colours and identities will make it simpler and easier for passengers to get around. In re-imagining London’s tube map, we are also honouring and celebrating different parts of London’s unique local history and culture. 

“The new names and colours have been chosen through engagement with passengers, historians and local communities, reflecting the heritage and diversity of our amazing city.”  

James Gaselee, clerk for the Worshipful Company of Weavers, said: “We are delighted that one of the newly named London Overground lines will be called the Weaver Line in recognition of the silk weaving trade that was centred on Spitalfields; this is not however purely historic as the name of the line will also shine a light on the silk weaving, textile and fashion industries that continue to flourish in London and across the country.”

TfL will now start the process of rebranding the line names across London’s transport network with the full roll out expected to be completed in one go by the end of the year

Andy Lord, London’s transport commissioner, said: “The London Overground is one of the most successful railways in the country and has grown to carry more than three million customers a week.

“The network, which has grown quite considerably since 2007, is currently shown as a complicated network of orange on route maps.  This can be confusing for customers less familiar with the network and could be a barrier for some wanting to use the London Overground. These new names and line colours will simplify the maps and routes for our customers, and it is hoped it will encourage more people to make the most of our services.  It is also a great way to tell the stories of some important parts of London’s cultural diversity.” 

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