HART - timetable, engineering and ticketing update
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HART - timetable, engineering and ticketing update

In this edition:
  • New timetable from Sunday 13 December
  • Kings Cross engineering
  • Ticketing update
  • Electric vehicle charging points
  • Emergency Recovery Measure Agreements
  • Other issues

New timetable from Sunday 13 December

The recent Monday- Friday timetable has been effectively "Saturday plus", with additional trains mainly early and late. From Monday 14 December it becomes "weekday minus", so although the service pattern is largely unchanged, there are a lot of small adjustments.

Moorgate services have been amended to reflect the fact that the 717s have better acceleration and braking capacity than the old 313s, and this has reduced journey times slightly on many services, compared to the December timetable last year.

There are additional stops at Brookmans Park and Welham Green off-peak, returning them to 3 trains per hour (uneven spacing). Coupled with this, there are some changes as to which trains stop at Harringay and Hornsey.

The peak semi-fasts WGC - Kings Cross are not returning yet - see below for more info about the Kings Cross project, which means that for much of the period there would be no capacity for them at Kings Cross. We hope they will return during 2021, but it will depend on a range of issues, including passenger numbers. Certainly any return to even 3-4 days a week for commuters would make capacity very tight without them, not to mention the increased congestion at Finsbury Park with more passengers needing to change to reach Kings Cross.

If you find that the new timetables have a negative impact on your journeys, then do let us know, as we can flag issues with the planners.

The first week of the new timetable pattern is showing in journey planners, but changes for engineering work are being finalised at shorter notice than normal and these have yet to be input for that week. This page shows the dates from which the info should be reliable for specific weeks

The pdf timetables have yet to be released, but should appear here shortly Paper timetable leaflets are not being made available, but we hope that they will return from May.

Kings Cross engineering

The main phase of the Kings Cross work will take place between Friday 26 February and Sunday 4 June. This will start and finish with a complete closure (and a further one part way through) and only roughly half the platforms will be available across the period.

We believe our fast Cambridge - Kings Cross services will continue to run when the station is only partly open, but there may be changes to timings. We'll provide more info nearer the time.

In the run up to the main work there are due to be other periods with reduced or no service, including over Christmas and New Year. Depending on the work being done, closures may also impact Moorgate trains and/or those TL services which go through the core to St Pancras.

An outline of the currently planned dates is available at

As plans are finalised for specific dates, more detail can be found at This does now show the planned work over the Christmas and New Year period - no trains as usual on 25-26 December. Then Kings Cross closed for 4 further days and partially for 4 more. On those days Moorgate and St Pancras services are due to run.

Following the announcements regarding Christmas bubbles etc, the schedule is being reviewed, but we hope the Kings Cross work will go ahead, as the work is very important to the overall programme and needs such a long closure.

Across the network it is expected that services will be very busy on Sunday 27 December, with people returning from Christmas bubbles. GN/TL will seek to run longer trains, where possible, but there is limited scope to do this.

We have been involved in discussions regarding passenger communications but the main message for the next few months must be - there is major engineering work being done (and not just on this project), so check websites and journey planners ahead of time and the day before / on the day, especially if planning to travel at weekends or early/late during the week.
Ticketing update


We are hoping that the launch of carnets on The Key will be signed off soon by the DfT. The technology is in place, so the launch could then happen quickly - watch out for details.

Paper carnets will be retained as an option (but we would expect enhanced barrier check to still apply to these).

Once The Key rollout is agreed, our next priorities for carnets are:
  • London Terminals tickets to be added for the smaller stations, that don't have them yet
  • The East Coast Mainline to get London Thameslink carnets - to bring our route into line with the Midland Mainline
  • Rollout for journeys not involving London, eg Hatfield to Stevenage or to Cambridge.

We were very pleased to hear, that Hatfield will be getting e-ticket capability installed at the gate-line during the spring.

E-tickets can be bought online and then read at the gate-line straight from a phone / tablet or can be printed out (by those who prefer to do so) in a similar way to a typical airline ticket.

Availability for specific journeys will depend on whether the other station also has the technology (or on GN/TL is ungated). London Terminals tickets should be available in this format, but not Travelcards, as TfL gate-lines do not have readers. At Moorgate and other TfL stations along that line, passengers need to show the e-ticket to a staff member to be let through the gate.

Fare increase / part time season tickets

The DfT and HM Treasury have yet to announce whether there will be a fare increase for regulated fares (such as season tickets) during 2021. It will not happen on the normal timescale, as the industry needs about 2 months to get systems updated.

When announcement is made, it is likely to create headlines across news media, so you should have plenty of time to make any relevant decisions.

Alongside that, there may, or may not, be announcements regarding other new ticket types aimed at commuters travelling less than 5 days a week. Rail companies submitted proposals to the DfT in the summer, but these remain under discussion with HM Treasury.

Fare options

We covered this in our September newsletter - if you are thinking about making journeys using GN/TL, then the info is available on our website

If you are considering journeys spanning other operators and are seeking so-called "Advance" cheaper tickets, then be aware that these are being released closer to date of travel than is normal - indeed many for the Christmas period are yet to be released, as train operators need to wait for timetables to be confirmed.

There are occasions where it appears these have sold out, rather than not yet being available (particularly on third party websites), so we recommend always checking the train company website for confirmation of the position.
Electric vehicle charging points

Great Northern / Thameslink and the Dept for Transport have recently opened 27 Electric Vehicle charging points on floor 4 of the station car park:
The points are primarily designed for commuters and provide a slow charge over a number of hours (speed depends on number of vehicles plugged in at that time). More info is available on the Pod Point website

Car park charges and payment methods are shown at: and there is currently no additional cost for using the EV points.

To use the chargers, download the Pod Point App from Apple or Google app stores and create an account – see  You will need a charging cable suitable for attaching your vehicle to a Type 2 socket.

The picture below (from GTR) shows Transport Secretary Grant Shapps opening the Electric Vehicle charging hub in September, together with Tom Moran, Managing Director Thameslink and Great Northern.
Emergency Recovery Measure Agreements

A contract is now in place for GTR to manage GN/TL services through until September 2021 - the original end date of their management contract.

This continues to operate in such a way that fare revenue goes to the government and therefore many decisions have to be referred to the DfT for approval, before being implemented.

This also now applies to most other train companies in England, apart from Open Access operators such as Grand Central and Hull Trains.

Other issues

We are awaiting updates on several other issues impacting the station, such as the enhancements to be delivered under the passenger benefit fund - we will provide updates as soon as we have any definite news.

We continue to work on a wide range of other topics - impacting trains, the station and information provision.

In the meantime, if you have any questions or an issue where you think we can assist, please let us know - by email or via Twitter.

Spread the Word

Please let other station users know of our existence and encourage them to join our mailing list and/or follow us on Twitter. We update the Twitter feed on our website with news items etc in between newsletters.

Do let us have details of any other issues and concerns and we will assist in raising them in an appropriate forum.

Help please! - in order to maximise our impact in matters effecting you, we need further volunteers - even a small amount of time would help e.g. info stands at the station, contributing to these newsletters, updating info on our website etc. You can contact us on

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