Wayne Asher

A Very Political Railway: The Rescue of the North London Line

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The North London Line from Richmond to Broad Street, and later, to Stratford was the capital's Cinderella railway for many years. An official report in 2006 called it 'shabby, unsafe, unreliable and overcrowded.' It was threatened with closure under the Beeching Axe in the 1960s and again in the 1970s, escaping on both occasions due to organised and effective protest groups. Today it thrives as a key part of Transport for London's Overground network, and the story of how it survived closure threats and lack of investment is essential to an understanding of the politics of public transport in London over the past half century