The Night Tube was closed in March 2020 at the start of the first Covid lockdown and was not expected to reopen until 2022 at the earliest, despite restrictions easing in July this year.
The need to use drivers for daytime services is thought to have played a part in the delayed restart of the Night Tube as well as the pandemic, so Khan surprised many when he announced the new decision on Thursday on Twitter.
He wrote: “Many Londoners have asked when the Night Tube is coming back.
“Today I’m delighted to confirm that, after a significant amount of hard work over many months by TfL, City Hall and trade unions, Victoria and Central Line services will resume on November 27.”
NEW: Many Londoners have asked when the Night Tube is coming back. Today I’m delighted to confirm that, after a significant amount of hard work over many months by TfL, City Hall & trade unions, Victoria & Central Line services will resume on 27 November.
— Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan (@MayorofLondon) October 14, 2021
The 24-hour service – first opened in 2016 – operated on the Victoria, Jubilee, Central, Northern, Piccadilly and Overground lines until the first lockdown meant tubes could only run until around midnight.
TfL (Transport for London) boss Andy Byford told the Evening Standard in April: “We need the personnel to keep the day services going and frankly there isn’t the demand for it, so there are no immediate plans to restore the Night Tube within a year, and certainly not before 2022.”
It’s thought an online petition with more than 125,000 signatories asking for the Night Tube to come back may have influenced the decision to bring it back early.
People have been more concerned about women’s safety after the murder of Sarah Everard, and TfL has promised that the reopening will help create a more secure environment for women and girls to travel.
The mayor also added that the reopening will “help businesses like bars, clubs and restaurants”.
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