diamond geezer

 Saturday, May 21, 2022

It's time for a Crossrail quiz.
See if you can answer the ten questions before scrolling down to see the answers.
(Remember there are 41 stations altogether, not just the 10 new ones)
Q1) Which two Crossrail stations will not be open when the service begins?

Q2) Which Crossrail station has the shortest name?
Q3) ...and the longest?

Q4) Which is the only Crossrail station that isn't (yet) step-free?

Q5) How much is an off-peak contactless single from Reading to Shenfield?
a) £12 b) £17 c) £22 d) £27

Q6) Where can passengers ride Crossrail for free?

Q7) Which Crossrail station interchanges with the most other TfL services?

Q8) Which station has the most Crossrail platforms?

Q9) Which is the southernmost Crossrail station?

Q10) Which is the oldest Crossrail station?
Go on, try answering them before looking at the answers.

Or answering some of them.
Even one of them.

You're only spoiling it for yourself by scrolling down straight away.


Q1) Which two Crossrail stations will not be open when the service begins?
One is Bond Street (which isn't ready yet and should open 'later this year').
The other is Heathrow Airport Terminal 4 (which is due to reopen in the middle of June).

Q2) Which Crossrail station has the shortest name?
Q3) ...and the longest?
That'll be Iver for the shortest name and Heathrow Airport Terminals 2&3 for the longest.
If you ignore Heathrow then Tottenham Court Road is the longest at 18 characters, but T2&3 has nine more.

Q4) Which is the only Crossrail station that isn't (yet) step-free?
The only station that hasn't yet earned its step-free blob is Ilford, where work is still underway on the main ticket hall and its three new lifts. Completion is anticipated in 'summer 2022'. TfL are blaming Network Rail, and Network Rail are blaming unexpected problems with pre-existing concrete.

Q5) How much is an off-peak contactless single from Reading to Shenfield?
It's £17, which was answer b), but rises to £29.60 if you make the journey at peak times. It's cheaper than buying a standard paper ticket, so don't do that.

Q6) Where can passengers ride Crossrail for free?
All rail transfers between terminals at Heathrow Airport are free of charge, so anyone can ride Crossrail between T2&3, T4 and T5 for nothing. Just don't go one extra stop to Hayes and Harlington because that'll cost you over £6.

Q7) Which Crossrail station interchanges with the most other TfL services?
At Paddington Crossrail interchanges with four different tube lines, and at Stratford connects to two tube lines, the Overground and the DLR. They're in joint second place with four each. But the winner with a total of six is Liverpool Street which connects to the Overground, the Northern line at Moorgate and four other tube lines at Liverpool Street. Just think twice before you decide to switch between the Northern line and the Overground because that is going to be one hell of a long walk.

Q8) Which station will have the most Crossrail platforms?
Most Crossrail stations have two Crossrail platforms, so we can ignore those immediately. A few stations have platforms Crossrail trains use only rarely, for example during engineering works, so I'm going to ignore those too. Reading uses four possible platforms for Crossrail terminators, so that's one of the higher totals. But the joint winners are Paddington and Liverpool Street, both of which have two Crossrail platforms in the depths and three Crossrail platforms in the mainline station, a total of five. By the end of the year Paddington will only have Crossrail platforms underground, i.e. the standard two, but Liverpool Street is destined to retain its above ground terminus at peak times so that should be the eventual victor.

Q9) Which is the southernmost Crossrail station?
This proved rather harder to answer than I was expecting, not least because this is an east-west railway and the route map is quite deceptive. Abbey Wood isn't even in the top five. Check on a proper map and this all comes down to an unexpectedly tight battle between Reading and Heathrow Terminal 4. Technically Reading wins because the main station entrance is slightly further south than any part of the Heathrow station. Alternatively Heathrow Terminal 4 wins because its platforms extend fractionally further south than Reading's Crossrail platforms (which are on the northern side of the station). I'll accept both as correct answers, but you'd never guess from the tube map that Reading was even in contention.

Q10) Which is the oldest Crossrail station?
A lot of Crossrail stations have been around for a long time, indeed the majority are 19th century. By my calculations 14 were first opened between 1838 and 1840, even if they're not quite the same buildings they were then. West narrowly beats east because the line to Berkshire opened in 1838 and the line to Essex in 1839. The Great Western Railway ran its first services between Paddington and Maidenhead on 4th June 1838, which ought to be the key date we're looking for except my research suggests every single one of those Day One stations has since been re-sited. Even Paddington started out on a temporary site which eventually became a goods yard. I therefore believe we have two winners, both of which opened on 1st December 1838, which are Hanwell and Ealing Broadway. What's more Hanwell is still gorgeous and Grade II listed, even after the addition of lifts, so is easily Crossrail's most traditionally attractive station.

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