North and West London Light Railway
|Proposer||Campaign for Better Transport|
|Website||Brent Cross campaign page at the Wayback Machine (archived 30 September 2009)|
|Stakeholders||Campaign for Better Transport and Barnet, Brent, Harrow, Ealing councils|
North & West London
The North and West London Light Railway (NWLLR), formerly known as the Brent Cross Railway, was proposal for a light rail system in North and West London in the UK. It was put forward by by the London group of the Campaign for Better Transport and by the Coalition for a Sustainable Brent Cross Cricklewood.
The proposal, published in 2008, envisaged a rapid transit network using existing or abandoned railway corridors and would have been similar to the Docklands Light Railway (DLR). It was promoted in the context of the Brent Cross Shopping Centre expansion project, a major urban planning scheme that involves the redevelopment of Brent Cross and northern Cricklewood. The stated aim was to alleviate anticipated traffic problems when this development goes ahead.
The NWLLR has not been approved or funded.
The Campaign for Better Transport aimed to reduce CO2 emissions, pollution and cars on the roads. It has said that high-intensity bus services in Brent Cross create more pollution and traffic jams.
The route would have had 34 stations on four lines:
- Ealing Broadway - Hanger Lane South - West Acton - Alliance Road - North Acton - Harlesden - Craven Park - Taylors Lane - Neasden - Dudden Hill - Gladstone Park - Edgware Road Brent - Brent Cross Thameslink - Brent Cross Shopping Centre - Brent Cross South - Brent Cross
- Park Royal - Park Royal Central - North Acton - Harlesden - Craven Park - Taylors Lane - Neasden - Brent Park - Tokyngton - Wembley Stadium
- Wembley Stadium - Tokyngton - Brent Park - Neasden - Dudden Hill - Gladstone Park - Edgware Road Brent - Brent Cross Thameslink - Brent Cross Shopping Centre - Brent Cross South - Brent Cross
- Finchley Road - West Hampstead - Mill Lane - Cricklewood - Brent Cross Thameslink - Brent Cross Shopping Centre - Brent Cross West - Hendon - Kingsbury Road - Colindeep Lane - Colindale - Grahame Park Way - Copthall - Mill Hill East - Finchley Central
The proposal suggested that the service could be light rail, similar to the Docklands Light Railway. The core proposal envisaged a line running east-west across north London from Brent Cross to Park Royal, with extensions to Ealing Broadway and Wembley Stadium, and a new line running north-south from Finchley Central through Brent Cross to Finchley Road.
The routes would have used a combination of existing passenger railway lines, freight lines and disused lines, linked by stretches of new track. The network was to include the Dudding Hill Line, the Ealing Broadway branch of the Central line and freight tracks parallel to the Midland Main Line.
The proposal had limited support from some local councils, but lacked the funding or support from the Greater London Authority that is necessary to undertake project costings or a feasibility study. The proposal was not supported by the site developers at Brent Cross and relied on changes being made to their plans.
In April 2009, Ealing Council voted to call on Transport for London to look into the proposal and discuss its strategic potential with neighbouring councils. Harrow Council gave its support in principle, but stating that unless Transport for London provided "funding for a feasibility study to examine this proposal ... no more public money should be directed towards this proposal." In 2009 Brian Coleman, the mayor of Barnet and London Assembly Member for Barnet and Camden, said "It's not feasible, it won't happen. Ideas like this are thought up by men who probably still have a train set in the attic." Later that year, Barnet Council voted to request the developers to maintain contact with the light rail promoters. In January 2011, Brent Council voted to call on Transport for London to look into the proposal and discuss its strategic potential with neighbouring councils. In January 2014, Barnet Council voted that "much-needed orbital rail links should be investigated, routes safeguarded and included in financial planning", but it removed a reference in the original motion to "light-rail".
A similar proposal was put forward by West London Business in 2008 to build a Surbiton-to-Brent Cross underground railway, called the West London Orbital. In 2009, the Greater London Assembly proposed using the Dudding Hill Line section of the route for a new London Overground service. This scheme has since been promoted by TfL as a new London Overground line running between Hendon/West Hampstead Thameslink and Hounslow/Kew Bridge, and features in the 2018 Mayor's Transport Strategy.
- Coalition for a Sustainable Brent Cross Cricklewood Transport briefing material, 2009 onwards
- Flintoff, John-Paul (17 September 2009). "Orbital rail the solution to city congestion?". The Times. Archived from the original on 25 September 2009. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- "Brent Cross Cricklewood - a new Town Centre". Brent Cross Cricklewood Partners. 2009. Archived from the original on 29 March 2010. Retrieved 7 January 2010.
- "Reducing Car Use: Proposals for a Brent Cross Railway" (PDF). London Campaign for Better Transport. 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 August 2010. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- "New rail line needed to tackle traffic at Brent Cross". Campaign for Better Transport. 23 January 2008. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 October 2011. Retrieved 3 June 2011.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
- "Brent Cross Railway - possible eventual network" (PDF). Campaign for Better Transport. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 October 2011.
- "Notes Of Council Meeting - 21st April 2009". Ealing Council. Archived from the original on 20 December 2014. Retrieved 24 November 2013.
- "Minutes of the Meeting of the Council" (PDF). Harrow London Borough Council. 2 April 2009. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Wilkey, Susanna (26 February 2009). "New tramline gathers speed". Hampstead and Highgate Express. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- "Decisions of the Planning and Environment Committee". Barnet London Borough Council. 18 and 19 November 2009. Retrieved 19 December 2009. Check date values in:
- "Railway for north west London proposed". Willesden and Brent Times. 3 February 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2011.
- "Meeting of Council, Monday 24 January 2011 7.00 pm (Item 11.)". Brent Council. Retrieved 25 November 2013.
- "London Borough of Barnet motion on orbital rail links" (PDF).
- "West London Orbital 2008 Update – a summary" (PDF). West London Business. April 2008. Archived from the original (PDF) on 18 July 2011. Retrieved 16 December 2009.
- Coalition for a Sustainable Brent Cross Cricklewood Briefing material on new London Overground service
- "West London Orbital". Transport for London. Transport for London. Retrieved 3 December 2019.