Train fan gets best birthday present with first trip on Elizabeth line


or transport fanatic Vincent Karthaus the opening of Crossrail could not be better timed – he will be spending the morning of his 15th birthday on the first train from Paddington.

The teenager from Walthamstow, east London, will be getting up about 4.30am to take the train to Abbey Wood with his dad Roland before heading back for a day at school.

He said: “I just love trains so much. I’ve always been a big fan, they’ve always really interested me and public transport in general. “

Vincent, whose devotion to public transport extend to wearing socks with a Victoria Line pattern and spending his weekends making YouTube videos about London buses, said the opening of the line was a brilliant birthday present and he is hoping to get a permanent reminder of the big day.

He said: “They have released new Oyster cards with the seat pattern of the train which I think is quite cool. But I am not technically old enough for it but I’ll see what I can do to get it while I can. “

“I think it will be my first time being the first for anything and we have been waiting for it for a long time, a bit like when the Jubilee Line opened in 1979 which was also two years after it was supposed to.”

The Elizabeth Line will run from Reading in Berkshire and Heathrow Airport in west London, to Shenfield in Essex and Abbey Wood in south east London, via the center of the capital.

It is predicted to bring an additional 1.5 million people to within a 45 minute commute to central London. Commuters in Abbey Wood will be able to get to Paddington in 29 minutes, while a journey between London’s two major financial hubs, Canary Wharf and the City, will take just 7 minutes.


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