LogoClive's UndergrounD Line Guides

"That," he asked finally, "is a train?"

"It can't be anything else," said Fritz, not very happily. "It doesn't appear to be a signal box and there's not much point in having a wrought-iron summer house this far underground."

- The Subways of Tazoo
Colin Kapp

LogoDocklands Light Railway

Modern Light Railway

[Last modified: 2024-04-23]

Rolling stock


London has been a port since at least Roman times, and by the 19th century ships loading and unloading at the London docks along the Thames formed a major part of the economy. By the late 19th century most of this traffic was handled by five main groups of docks, four of which were on the north side of the Thames:

The Underground connection with the first two is tenuous: the East London Line passes in twin tunnels along the bed of one of the London & St. Katherine's docks, since filled in, and Canada Water station is named after one of the Surrey Commercial docks, again since filled in. It is the next two that concern us most.

The London & Blackwall Railway opened in 1840 to provide a fast (for the times) connection from the City of London to the East India Docks at Blackwall. Initially the line was cable-hauled, with operating arrangements making it possible only to travel to or from the termini and not directly between intermediate stations; within a few years, however, it was converted to more conventional operation. The L&BR was extended three times; firstly from Limehouse to Stratford, secondly from the middle of that line eastwards to Barking, and thirdly southwards into the new Millwall Docks. This last extension - the Millwall Extension Railway - brought major goods traffic to the L&BR. It ran north-south along the spine of the Isle of Dogs from the Poplar area to the ferry and foot tunnel at North Greenwich, with numerous branches to the docksides. The light nature of the wooden bridges over the docks, and the risk of fire from sparks, meant that the line was operated by horse-drawn trains for many years.

Meanwhile, in 1852 the descriptively-named East & West India Docks & Birmingham Junction Railway was opened from Camden to the Isle of Dogs. Unlike the London & Blackwall, its raison d'être was goods traffic between the docks and the LNWR lines; passenger traffic came later and was only ever minor.

Unlike the India Docks, the Royal Docks were rail-served from the outset. About 10 years before the first dock opened, the Eastern Counties & Thames Junction Railway opened from Stratford to Thames Wharf, at the mouth of Bow Creek, and was quickly extended to North Woolwich, where a ferry could link it to Woolwich on the south bank of the river. The opening of the Royal Victoria Dock meant it was necessary to install a swing bridge over the western exit of the dock; rather than live with the inconvenience, the railway was diverted around the north side of the dock, with the original route being retained under the name "Silvertown Tramway". The subsequent opening of the Royal Albert Dock further east, with a linking canal between the two, meant another swing bridge; this time the main route was diverted under the dock, with the swing bridge used only by trains too heavy or long for the tunnel. In addition, a later branch went northeast to Beckton, ending near the large gas works.

All three of the docks in the Royals group had large numbers of tracks and sidings along their length, owned by the docks company. But, in addition, the latter owned a genuine branch railway from the start of the tunnel along the north side of the Royal Albert Dock to the Gallions hotel near the river. This branch carried only passenger and parcels traffic, with trains working through from Stratford, Liverpool Street, and Fenchurch Street.

The L&BR and the EC&TJ both became part of the Great Eastern Railway and thence the LNER. The E&WID&BJR renamed itself the North London Railway and ended up as part of the LMSR.

Until World War II, the docklands were a major area of economic activity, with hundreds of ships using the docks daily and large numbers of passenger and goods services. However, the area suffered serious bomb damage during the war - Poplar NLR holds the dubious record of being the most frequently bombed station in Britain - which it never recovered from. In combination with various post-war changes - an increase in air freight, new ports on the coast, larger ships unable to reach the up-river docks, and changes in the flow of goods - the whole area went into a major decline and most of the railways were closed down. By 1980 the only services left were the former L&BR route to Barking (the original Blackwall route having long since gone) and the services to North Woolwich via the tunnel under the docks - now part of the North London Line.

Commercial shipping activity in the docks ended in 1981, and a few years later a determined effort was made to renovate the Isle of Dogs area. A major concern was the lack of good transport links, and so it was decided to build a new railway to serve the area. The new Docklands Light Railway was built as cheaply as possible; for example, a minimum number of trains was purchased (11 units, with the peak service requiring 9 or 10), and automatic driving and unmanned stations were both used to reduce staffing costs. Though there was some new construction, notably the viaducts over the West India Docks and along their southern edge to Crossharbour, wherever possible the line used existing or abandoned railway alignments, which the area had in abundance. These included:

The DLR started running in 1987 from Tower Gateway and Stratford to Island Gardens. It was far more successful than anticipated: a few months after opening, the hourly ridership was sometimes exceeding the long-term planned daily numbers. Therefore stations were extended and new stock purchased to allow 2-unit trains to run. The shortage of connections with LU was noted (Tower Gateway is a few minutes' walk from Tower Hill, and all other connections are well to the east of the City), and so a short branch to Bank was added. Since this was almost all in tunnel, the cost was twice as much as the whole of the original system, including the trains.

The successful renovation of the Isle of Dogs area served by the original line encouraged other such projects, and in 1989 contracts were awarded for the branch to Beckton, which it was intended would do for the "Royals" area (the north side of the old Royal Docks) what the original DLR had done for the "Dogs". At the same time, work started to convert the line from a fixed block signalling system (albeit without signals) to Seltrac "moving block" signalling over the next 5 to 6 years, tripling the capacity of the route. Because the new branch used the new signalling from the start, it was initially operated as a separate line; it was only from 1995-12-16 that trains to and from Beckton started running west of Poplar.

In 1997 the line was franchised as a Management/Employee Buy-Out.

Two years later the line was extended from Crossharbour across the Thames to Greenwich and Lewisham. This provided a new direct link across the river as well as connections to three existing east-west rail routes. The original route south of Mudchute over the MER viaduct has been closed, with replacement stations on the new alignment.

The next branch diverges at Canning Town and runs via London City Airport, the south side of the King George V dock, and then under the Thames to Woolwich Arsenal. It was mostly opened in 2005, though the final underwater section took another 3 years.

The original single-track bay at Stratford was a bottleneck for the service, so two replacement platforms were built on the south side of the westbound Central Line track.

The most recent branch opened in the summer of 2011. It takes over the trackbed of another section of the North London Line, from Canning Town to Stratford, and then continues to Stratford International (on the Channel Tunnel Rail Link and in the middle of the 2012 Olympics area). As a result Stratford station became unusual in being served by two completely separate branches of the same line.

In 2014 Pudding Mill Lane station was moved sideways to make way for the Crossrail tunnel portal, with the line being diverted over some length as a result.

Further proposed extensions are described in the future proposals file.


These dates include those of the GER Beckton and PLA Gallions branches.

In this section, Stratford terminal platforms on the Bow Road branch and Stratford through platforms on the Stratford International branch are treated as separate stations.

key to symbols

1839-06-20 [0] {Victoria Park & Bow} to Stratford opened [ECR, later GER]
1840-07-06 [2] Tower Gateway to Poplar L&BR opened [L&BR]
+ Limehouse L&BR, West India Dock
1840-08-03 + Stepney East[1]
1840-10-01 + Shadwell L&BR
1842-08-21 + Cannon-street Road
1845- = Poplar L&BR
1847-06-14 [1] [Stratford Southern Junction] to Canning Town (1) opened [North Woolwich, later NLR @@@@ EC&TJ?]
+ Stratford High Street
0 Canning Town (1) to [Thames Wharf Junction] opened [North Woolwich, later GER]
1848-11- - Cannon-street Road
1849-04-02 0 [Bow divergence] to Victoria Park & Bow opened [L&BR]
1850-09-25 [Bow divergence] to Victoria Park & Bow closed [L&BR]
1850-09-26 1 [Bow Junction NLR] to [Tilbury Junction] opened [NLR]
1854-04-13 0 [Bow divergence] to {Victoria Park & Bow} reopened [L&BR]
{Victoria Park & Bow} to Stratford started [L&BR]
1854-10-16 0 Stratford to [Stratford Southern Junction] opened [NLR/GER joint service]
1855-11-30 [1] [Thames Wharf Junction] to {Prince Regent} opened [North Woolwich, later GER]
+ Custom House
1858- + Tidal Basin
1866-08-01 [0] Poplar NLR to [Bow Junction NLR] opened [NLR]
1870-09-01 0 [East India Dock Road Junction] to Poplar NLR opened [NLR]
1871-12-18 + Millwall Junction
% Millwall Docks [Millwall Extension Railway]
1872-07-29 [0] Millwall Docks to {Island Gardens (1)} opened [Millwall Extension Railway]
1873-03-17 [0] {Prince Regent} to Beckton GER opened
1877-06-01 + Leman Street
1880-08-03 [1] {Prince Regent} to Central opened
+ Connaught Road
1880-11- [1] Central to Gallions opened
+ Manor Way
1884-09-01 + South Bromley
1886-12-12 = Gallions
1887- = Manor Way
1888- - Canning Town (1)
+ Canning Town (2)
1890-06-30 + [East India Dock Road Junction] to Poplar NLR closed
1916-05-21 - Leman Street, Shadwell L&BR
1919-05-05 + Shadwell L&BR
1919-07-01 + Leman Street
1926-05-03 Millwall Docks to {Island Gardens (1)} closed
Stepney East[1] to Poplar L&BR closed
1940-09-06 {Prince Regent} to Beckton GER closed
1940-09-07 {Prince Regent} to Gallions closed
1940- [0] {Prince Regent} to Beckton GER reopened
1940-12-28 {Prince Regent} to Beckton GER closed
1941-07-06 - Leman Street, Shadwell L&BR
1943-08-14 - Tidal Basin
1944-05-14 Poplar NLR to [Tilbury Junction] closed
1949-11-05 [Bow divergence] to {Victoria Park & Bow} closed[2]
1957-05-04 - Stratford High Street
1979-05-14 + West Ham

1987-08-31 DLR opens
[3] Tower Gateway to {West India Dock} reopened
+ Shadwell (2), Limehouse DLR, Westferry
[4] {West India Dock} to {Millwall Docks} opened
X Canary Wharf (1)
1 {Millwall Docks} to Island Gardens (1) reopened
1 West India Quay to [East India Dock Road Junction] opened
[3] [East India Dock Road Junction] to [Tilbury Junction] reopened
+ All Saints, Devons Road, Bow Church
0 [Tilbury Junction] to [Bow divergence] opened
0 [Bow divergence] to {Victoria Park & Bow} reopened
{Victoria Park & Bow} to Stratford started [DLR]
1991-07-29 0 Bank to [Royal Mint Street Junction] opened
1991- + Canary Wharf (1)
1991- - West India Quay (Delta Junction to Canary Wharf (1) rebuilt)
1993-06-28 + West India Quay
1994-03-28 [9] Poplar DLR to Beckton (re)opened
X Millwall Junction, Poplar L&BR, Canning Town (1), Tidal Basin, Central, Manor Way
1994-05-28 Stratford to Canning Town (1) closed [NR]
Canning Town (1) to Prince Regent withdrawn [NR]
1995-07-31 [0] Westferry to Poplar DLR reopened
1995-10-29 [1] Stratford to Canning Town (1) reopened [NR]
+ West Ham
Canning Town (1) to Prince Regent restored [NR]
1996-01-15 + Pudding Mill Lane (1)
1996-02-09 Canary Wharf (1) to Island Gardens (1) closed (bomb damage around South Quay)
1996-03-16 0 Canary Wharf (1) to Heron Quays reopened
1996-04-15 [2] Heron Quays to Island Gardens (1) reopened
1996-04-22 + South Quay
1996-05-10 East India to Beckton closed (Jubilee Line works)
1996-06-10 [7] East India to Beckton reopened
X Canning Town (1), Tidal Basin, Central, Manor Way
1998-03-05 + Canning Town (1)
1999-01-08 Crossharbour to {Millwall Docks} closed
{Millwall Docks} to Island Gardens (1) closed
1999-05-14 Stratford to Canning Town (1) started [Jubilee]
1999-11-20 0 Crossharbour to {Millwall Docks} opened
[5] {Millwall Docks} to Lewisham opened
X Millwall Docks
1999-12-03 + Cutty Sark
2001-09-30 - Heron Quays
2002-12-18 = Heron Quays
2005-12-02 3 Canning Town (1) to King George V opened
2005-12-24 Stratford to Canning Town (1) withdrawn [Jubilee]
2005-12-29 Stratford to Canning Town (1) restored [Jubilee]
2006-12-09 Stratford to Prince Regent withdrawn [NR]
2007-12-09 + Langdon Park [3]
2008-05-23 Westferry to West India Quay closed (bridge work)
2008-06-02 [0] Westferry to West India Quay reopened
2008-06-27 Tower Gateway to [Royal Mint Street Junction] closed (platform lengthening at Tower Gateway)
2009-01-10 0 King George V to Woolwich Arsenal opened
2009-03-02 0 Tower Gateway to [Royal Mint Street Junction] reopened
2009-05-21 East India to Prince Regent closed (flyover work at Canning Town)[4]
Canning Town to London City Airport closed (flyover work at Canning Town)
2009-05-25 Blackwall to East India closed (flyover work at Canning Town)
2009-06-02 [3] East India to Prince Regent reopened
X Tidal Basin
2 Canning Town to London City Airport reopened
2009-10-23 = South Quay
2009-12-23 Bank to [Royal Mint Street Junction] closed (engineering work at Bank)
2010-02-01 0 Bank to [Royal Mint Street Junction] reopened
2011-08-31 0 Stratford International to Stratford opened
Stratford to Canning Town (1) started
+ Stratford High Street, Abbey Road, Star Lane
2011-12-23 Bank and Tower Gateway to Poplar and West India Quay closed
2012-01-03 [3] Bank and Tower Gateway to Poplar and West India Quay reopened
+ Shadwell (2), Limehouse DLR, Westferry
2012-07-13 - Pudding Mill Lane (1) (Olympic and Paralympic Games)
2012-09-13 + Pudding Mill Lane (1)
2012-12-21 Bank to [Royal Mint Street Junction] closed (track upgrade)
2012-12-22 Canning Town to Beckton closed (track realignment for Crossrail)
2013-01-02 0 Bank to [Royal Mint Street Junction] reopened
[7] Canning Town to Beckton reopened
X Tidal Basin, Central, Manor Way
2014-04-17 Bow Church to Stratford closed (Line diversion for Crossrail works)
2014-04-28 [1] Bow Church to Stratford via Pudding Mill Lane (2) (re)opened
2017-02-02 - Custom House (Crossrail works)
2018-01-08 + Custom House
2020-03-22 - Island Gardens (Covid-19)
2020-03-29 - Prince Regent (Covid-19)
2020-04-01 + Island Gardens
2020-05-11 + Prince Regent
2023-08-18 Stratford International to Canning Town (1) closed
2023-08-29 [5] Stratford International to Canning Town (1) reopened
2023-12-22 Westferry and Poplar to Canary Wharf closed
2023-12-26 Bank and Tower Gateway to Poplar closed
2023-12-31 1 Westferry and Poplar to Canary Wharf reopened
[3] Bank and Tower Gateway to Poplar reopened

[1] Stepney East LB&R is the same station as Limehouse DLR; it was renamed on 1987-05-11. The old name is used here to avoid confusion with Limehouse LB&R in this period.

[2] The National Rail line from Bow divergence to the location of the erstwhile Victoria Park & Bow station (now known as Bow Junction, but not to be confused with Bow Junction on the NLR) is used for passenger services in emergencies.

[3] Official records state the station opened on 2007-12-10, but trains were stopping and accepting passengers on the 9th.

[4] On 2009-05-30 and 2009-05-31 there was no service between Westferry and Beckton and between Canning Town and Woolwich Arsenal.


The original Tower Gateway to West India Quay section, exclusive of those two stations, uses the viaducts of the L&BR. Originally there was a very tight triangular junction ("Delta Junction") immediately north of West India Quay. However, when the Beckton branch was constructed, the section from Westferry to Delta Junction was greatly altered: a new line was built to link Poplar and Westferry directly, with the original eastbound track carried over it on a flyover, the northern arm of Delta Junction was lifted (though the route the tracks took along the viaducts is still visible), and West India Quay was expanded to four platforms. In 2009 the easternmost platform was removed and a new eastbound line was constructed to run from Westferry under West India Quay to Canary Wharf. This arrangement eliminated conflicts between trains from Westferry running to Lewisham and those from Stratford terminating at Canary Wharf, but trains using the new line are unable to stop at West India Quay.

From Bank to just west of Royal Mint Street Junction the lines are in twin tubes. West of Bank (actually north, as the platforms lie under the Northern Line ones) the two tracks merge into a turnback siding. A section of level tunnel was included to allow for the possibility of a future station to replace the Tower Gateway branch.

From Poplar to Crossharbour, the line is on a viaduct. This section climbs quickly to West India Quay station, runs over three separate docks with stations on the two intermediate wharfs (Canary Wharf and Heron Quays), turns sharply east to serve South Quay, and then sharply south again; there are three tracks from West India Quay to Canary Wharf. The original route then ran on embankment almost straight to Mudchute (1), before using the MER viaduct to reach Island Gardens (1); the line was single south of Mudchute. Island Gardens (1) was built with the two platforms in a V, with the intention that the route could be extended southwards over the roads and river in various directions. This section has now been closed and the new route diverges to the east just before Mudchute (2) station. It descends into cut-and-cover to Island Gardens (2), then in twin tubes under the Thames to Greenwich. Finally it runs on a mixture of viaduct and embankment to Lewisham, where the station is between the two branches of the National Rail line.

The Poplar to Stratford branch runs in cutting along the North London Railway alignment to Bow Church, where it merges from double to single then climbs steeply to meet the link between the National Rail LTSR and Great Eastern routes (this link was the first extension of the L&BR). It then runs along the south edge of the latter's viaduct, with a loop at Pudding Mill Lane station, to Stratford, where it originally occupied a partial bay in the westbound island platform (giving convenient interchange from westbound main line and Central Line trains); this has been replaced by a pair of bay platforms on the south side of the station, though a new platform on the south side of the westbound Central Line means there is still cross-platform interchange to it. When Pudding Mill Lane station was moved sideways in 2014, the loop was extended over the full length of the diversion, leaving two short sections of single track between stations.

The Beckton branch runs on a mixture of surface route, viaduct, and cutting. Two stations (Beckton Park and Cyprus) are in the middle of road intersections, and the line runs in the middle of the road between them. From Canning Town to Prince Regent the line uses the alignment of a section of National Rail's North London Line (which closed from Stratford to North Woolwich in 2006), while from the latter to Manor Way it largely follows the Port of London Authority line (inherited from the dock company) to Gallions. The line then turns 180 degrees between Cyprus and Beckton, so that the eastbound track actually faces west at the latter; the last hundred metres or so are along the route of the GER Beckton branch. The Greenwich Meridian used to be marked by a green line across the trackbed just east of East India station.

The Woolwich Arsenal branch follows the route of the Silvertown Tramway, but on new viaduct, from Canning Town to Silvertown. It then diverges north, running via the City Airport, then makes a steep descent east of King George V to cross the river in tunnel. This tunnel makes a 180 degree turn so that, as at Beckton, the eastbound track at Woolwich Arsenal actually faces west.

The Canning Town to Stratford International branch took over the trackbed of National Rail's North London Line as far as Stratford.

There is a complex of junctions at Canning Town to connect both the Poplar and Stratford International routes to both the Beckton and Woolwich Arsenal branches, with the Poplar/Beckton tracks passing over 6 others on a viaduct:

    <-- North  South -->
               CANNING                                      /     \
                TOWN                                       /  /----*------
                                                          /  /     Beckton ==>
    --------------1------------------*--------------*----/  /  /---*------
                #####               /                \     /  /   /
    --------------2----------------*---------------*--X-- /  / --/
<== Stratford                                       \  \ /  /
    ========  /---3----\  =============]             \  /  /
             /  #####   \       Stanmore ==>           /  /
    ======  / /---4---\  \  ===========]              /  /
           / /         \  \                          /  /  \
           | |          \  \                        /  / \  \
           | |           \  \--*--*--------------- /  / --X--*------------
           | |            \     \  \              /  /     \      Woolwich ==>
           | |             *--\  \  \--------*-- /  / ------*-------------
           | |              \  \  \         /   /  /
           | |               \  \  \---*-------/  /
           | |                \  \    /          /
           | |                 \  \--*----------/            ---- DLR
           | |                  \       /                    ==== Jubilee Line
        To Poplar                \-----/

At Canning Town platforms 1 and 2 are at ground level, as are platforms 5 and 6 on the Jubilee Line (which descends into tunnel south of the station), while platforms 3 and 4 are on a viaduct above the latter.

All the tunnels are 5m (16'5") in diameter and have an emergency walkway beside the track.

The line is electrified using a bottom contact third rail at +750 V, with return through the running rails.

Although Shadwell (2) on this line and Shadwell (1) on the East London Line are completely separate stations, interchange between the two on a single ticket is permitted.


The basic pattern of service is:

before 06:30 06:30 to 10:00 10:00 to 16:00 16:00 to 19:30 19:30 to 21:00 after 21:00 weekend daytime weekend other
Between Tower Gateway and Beckton 6tph [2] 7½tph [2] 6tph [2] 7½tph [2] 6tph [2] 6tph [2] 6tph [2] 6tph [2]
Between Bank and Lewisham † 6tph [3] 15tph [3] 12tph [3] 15tph [3] 12tph [3] 12tph‡[3] 12tph [3] 6tph [3]
Woolwich Arsenal 6tph [2] 7½tph [2] 6tph [2] 7½tph [2] 6tph [2] 6tph [2] 6tph [2] 6tph [2]
Between Stratford and Canary Wharf 6tph [2] 7½tph [2] 12tph [2] 7½tph [2] 12tph [2] 8tph‡[2] 12tph♦[2] 6tph [2]
Lewisham ...   7½tph [2] ...   7½tph [2] ...   ...   ...   ...  
Between Stratford International and Woolwich Arsenal 6tph [3] 7½tph [3] 6tph [3] 7½tph [3] 6tph [3] 6tph [3] 6tph [2] 6tph [2]
Between Canning Town and Beckton ...   7½tph [2] 6tph [2] 7½tph [2] ...   6tph◊[2] 6tph[2] ...  

In the Bank to Lewisham direction, these trains use the dive-under line between Westferry and Canary Wharf, non-stopping West India Quay.
6tph after 23:30.
6tph after 19:30.
until 23:30.
[2]2 car trains
[3]3 car trains

During the Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2012 all trains were 3 cars.

Weekend daytime is 08:30 to 22:00 Saturdays and 10:30 to 19:30 Sundays.

A between-the-peaks service between Bank and Prince Regent, reversing at Canary Wharf, was withdrawn in February 2002.

While Tower Gateway was closed in 2008/9, all Beckton services (including the Poplar ones) terminated at Canning Town and all King George V services at Bank. While Bank was closed in early 2010, its services were diverted to Tower Gateway while the latter's trains terminated at Shadwell.

During platform lengthening work in the summer of 2008, only one track was used from Mudchute and from Greenwich (both inclusive), with each direction terminating in its own platform at Island Gardens; the tracks used were swapped over part-way through the work.

Covid-19: services are 6tph on all routes.

The minimum running times from Poplar are:

Bank 10 minutes
Beckton 18 minutes
King George V 12 minutes
Lewisham 19 minutes
Stratford 10 minutes
Tower Gateway 9 minutes

From Lewisham to Bank is 27 minutes and to Tower Gateway is 26 minutes.

Trains in the depots that have been cleaned and are ready to go into service sometimes have the destination indicator set to "Brunswick", which was the originally planned name for East India station.


                                       J          <= West  East =>
                                  |    |
                                  |    |
        T---\                    /      \
    A-------/                \ /          \
                              Q            \------K-----W

A = Bank
B = Beckton
C = Crossharbour
F = Westferry
G = Island Gardens (2)
I = Island Gardens (1)
J = Stratford International
K = King George V
L = Lewisham
M = Royal Mint Street Junction
N = Canning Town
P = Poplar
Q = West India Quay
S = Stratford
T = Tower Gateway
W = Woolwich Arsenal


The DLR does not use Ongar-based distances, and so I have arbitrarily set Poplar to 28.00000 (which makes Canning Town have approximately the same value as on the Jubilee Line). The DLR have been kind enough to supply me with their official inter-station distances for the original sections, which really are given to a precision of 10mm.

Unlike LU, the two directions are called "up" (towards Bank, Tower Gateway, and Stratford via West Ham) and "down" (towards Beckton, Lewisham, and Stratford via Bow Church) in the same way as NR lines. Platforms are simply labelled with notations such as "trains to Stratford" (though they are also numbered).

key to notation

Locations are listed down the page in the "down" direction.

337808 23.92772 [=2T1= bbbb] [Z1] Tower Gateway
341809 24.29 [UD =ud= ud] (Leman Street)
342809 24.4 [-] [Royal Mint Street Junction]
346809 [=UD= ud] (Cannon-street Road)
349809 25.20043 [U=D ud X] [Z2] Shadwell (2)
350809 25.25 [=UD= ud] (Shadwell L&BR)
361811 26.31845 [=UD= =ud= X] [Z2] Limehouse DLR
368809 27.05 [OPX] (Limehouse L&BR)
370808 27.26366 [OPX] [Z2] Westferry
372807 27.44 [OPX] (West India Dock)
377807 28!00000 [U=ud=D X] [Z2] Poplar DLR
380806 28.23 [ub=UD= X] (Millwall Junction)
383807 28.58 [OPX] ((Poplar L&BR))
384807 28.67686 [OPX] [Z2] Blackwall DLR
384807 28.68 [OPX] (Poplar L&BR)
388808 29.06785 [OPX] [Z2/3] East India
389808 29.113 [-] [Greenwich Meridian, see above]
394814 30.17032 [U4=3D/e6=5wu2=1d] !%[Z2/3] Canning Town (1)
394813 30.30 [-] [Blackwall Branch Junction]
395810 30.53 [-] [Thames Wharf Junction]
395809 30.60 [-] [Flyover junction (midpoint)]
405800 31.838 [OPX] [Z3] West Silvertown
412801 32.610 [OPX] [Z3] Pontoon Dock
423802 33.714 [IPX] [Z3] City Airport
432801 34.754 [IPX] [Z3] King George V
435801 35.00 [-] [Thames tunnel portal]
438788 37.154 [=UD= X+2] [Z4] Woolwich Arsenal

378846 25.705 [=#TT#=] [Z2/3] Stratford International
385843 27.029 [=13^^=^ =UD17=] !%[Z2/3] Stratford
386842 27.11 [-] [Sheet Factory Junction]
386842 27.17 [-] [Woolwich Junction]
387840 27.466 [ew =UD= X] [Z2/3] Stratford High Street
391833 28.087 [ew =UD= X] [Z2/3] Abbey Road
391833 28.12 [V =ew UD X] [Stratford Staff Halt]
391829 28.674 [e=wU=D X+2] !%[Z2/3] West Ham
391826 28.92 [-] [Abbey Mills Lower Junction]
391823 29.24 [-] [Plaistow Goods Junction]
391821 29.448 [ewU=D X] [Z2/3] Star Lane
393816 29.95 [ew =UD= X] (Canning Town (2))
394814 30.231 [u4=3d/e6=5wU2=1D] !%[Z2/3] Canning Town (1)
394813 30.30 [-] [Blackwall Branch Junction]
395810 30.53 [-] [Thames Wharf Junction]
395809 30.65 [-] [Flyover junction (midpoint)]
399808 30.95 [UD =we= X] (Tidal Basin)
401808 31.15198 [=UD= we X] [Z3] Royal Victoria
407809 31.71710 [=UD= =we= X] [Z3] Custom House[5]
410809 31.98 [-] [former junction with tunnel line]
412809 32.23658 [CPX] [Z3] Prince Regent
413808 32.28 [-] [Beckton Junction]
421808 33.15383 [OPX] [Z3] Royal Albert
427808 33.80287 [OPX] [Z3] Beckton Park
428808 33.9 [OPX] (Central)
433808 34.43022 [OPX] [Z3] Cyprus
436807 35.0 [OPX] ((Manor Way))
437807 35.0 [OPX] (Manor Way)
438810 35.16863 [OPX] [Z3] Gallions Reach
432815 [-] [converge with GER alignment]
431815 36.36596 [V=V X] [Z3] Beckton DLR

327811 22.82335 [CPX8] !%[Z1] Bank[6]
342809 24.4 [-] [Royal Mint Street Junction]

370808 27.26366 [OPX] [Z2] Westferry
372807 27.55 [OPX] (West India Dock)
374805 27.85652 [U=UD= D X+1] [Z2] West India Quay
374803 28.05552 [=1U2=3B4=5D6=] [Z2] Canary Wharf (1)
374801 28.24303 [OPX] ((Heron Quays))
374800 28.336 [OPX] [Z2] Heron Quays
376798 28.69452 [OPX] [Z2] ((South Quay))
377797 28.910 [OPX] [Z2] South Quay
379792 29.50450 [OPX] [Z2] Crossharbour
379792 29.50 [OPX] (Millwall Docks)
379787 29.994 [V=UD=] [Z2] Mudchute (2)
379787 30.07 [-] [tunnel mouth]
382784 30.441 [IPX] [Z2] Island Gardens (2)
382777 31.216 [IPX] [Z2/3] Cutty Sark for Maritime Greenwich
380773 31.76 [-] [tunnel mouth]
378773 31.877 [=ew=UD=] [Z2/3] Greenwich
374768 32.621 [OPX] [Z2/3] Deptford Bridge
378762 33.438 [OPX] [Z2/3] Elverson Road
380759 33.884 [IPX4] [Z2/3] Lewisham
381758 33.95 [-] [end of tracks]

379789 29.80 [-] [divergence from current route]
379786 30.15190 [OPX] [Z2] (Mudchute (1))
382783 30.59198 [V=V X] [Z2] (Island Gardens (1))

374805 27=70491 [d =DU=u +1] [Z2] West India Quay
(Up tracks through West India Quay become down tracks to Poplar, and vice versa)
377807 28!00000 [u=UD=d X] [Z2] Poplar DLR
380808 28.63 [-] [East India Dock Road Junction]
379809 28.71 [OPX] (Poplar NLR)
379809 28.71359 [OPX] [Z2] All Saints
379814 29.240 [OPX] [Z2] Langdon Park
378816 29.39 [IPX] (South Bromley)
376822 30.06029 [OPX] [Z2] Devons Road
373828 30.63 [-] [Bow Junction NLR]
373828 30.68299 [OPX] [Z2] Bow Church
373829 30.73 [OPX] (Bow)
373830 30.85 [-] [Tilbury Junction]
373831 30.94 [-] [Bow divergence]
373832 31.08 [-] (Victoria Park & Bow)
376833 ????? [-] [start of Pudding Mill Lane diversion]
378835 31.68 ? [OPX] [Z2/3] Pudding Mill Lane (2)
380837 ????? [-] [end of Pudding Mill Lane diversion]
384844 32.69 ? [V'4a'='4b'V '3a'=w3=5we6=8ew=10eb'10a'=11we= v2=1v] [Z2/3] Stratford

376833 ????? [-] [start of Pudding Mill Lane diversion]
378835 31.67864 [IPX] [Z2/3] (Pudding Mill Lane (1))
380837 ????? [-] [end of Pudding Mill Lane diversion]

394814 30=19 [u4=3d/e6=5wU2=1D] !%[Z2/3] Canning Town (1)
394813 30=26 [-] [Blackwall Branch Junction]
395810 30=49 [-] [Thames Wharf Junction]
395809 30.61 [-] [Flyover junction (midpoint)]
405800 31.838 [OPX] [Z3] West Silvertown

394814 30.17032 [U4=3D/e6=5wu2=1d] !%[Z2/3] Canning Town (1)
394813 30.30 [-] [Blackwall Branch Junction]
395810 30.53 [-] [Thames Wharf Junction]
395809 30.61 [-] [Flyover junction (midpoint)]
399808 30.95 [UD =we= X] (Tidal Basin)
401808 31.15198 [=UD= we X] [Z3] Royal Victoria

[5] Custom House station is signposted as "Custom House for ExCel on the DLR but not on the Elizabeth Line.

[6] Distances between Bank and Royal Mint Street Junction are measured via the down/eastbound line. The up/westbound tube is about 22m shorter than the km values indicate (putting Bank at 22.801).

The GER Beckton and PLA Gallions branches had the following layout (platform numbers are unavailable):

413808 32.28 [-] [Beckton Junction]
431815 34=3 [-] [Z3] {Beckton DLR}
432815 34=4 [-] [DLR alignment diverges]
438815 34=96 [V=] Beckton GER

407809 31.71710 [=UD=T] [Z3] Custom House
410809 31.98 [-] [junction with tunnel line]
412809 32.23658 [-] [Z3] {Prince Regent}
413808 32=28 [-] [Beckton Junction][7]
415808 32=50 [-] [junction with swing bridge line, start of PLA ownership]
416808 32=52 [OP] (Connaught Road)
421808 33=0 [-] [Z3] {Royal Albert}
427808 33=6 [-] [Z3] {Beckton Park}
428808 33=65 [OP] (Central)
433808 34=1 [-] [Z3] {Cyprus}
436807 34=78 [OP] ((Manor Way))
437807 34=79 [OP] (Manor Way)
439807 34=99 [OP] [junction with City Airport branch]
442807 35=24 [CP] (Gallions)

[7] Between Beckton Junction and Royal Albert, the present DLR alignment is south of that used by the PLA branch.


There are two depots. Poplar Depot is north of Poplar station; trains may enter eastbound from the station, and may leave either westbound into the station, or northbound towards All Saints. Beckton Depot is to the east of the line between Beckton and Gallions Reach; single track links from each lead to the west end of the depot.


There are no connections to any other line.

Rolling Stock

The line is served by two-car articulated units. Seven different types of these have been constructed:

Type  Numbers   
P86 01 to 11 now running on the Stadtbahn in Essen, Germany
P89 12 to 21 now running on the Stadtbahn in Essen, Germany
B90 22 to 44 now converted to type B92 (see below)
B92 45 to 91
B2K 92 to 99, 01 to 16 sometimes also called B92
B07 101 to 124 sometimes also called B2007
B09 125 to 155 sometimes also called B07 or B2007

A new fleet of longer trains (86 metres (282'1¾") instead of 56 metres (183'8¾")), designated B23 stock, is under construction and these trains are expected to come into service in 2024. They will be numbered 201 to 254.

Leading zeroes are sometimes seen affixed to the two-digit numbers, so "045" instead of "45". The prefix letter indicates whether the stock was orginally allocted to Poplar or Beckton depot.

Individual cars have a letter suffix: A or B for the existing stock and A to E for the B23 stock.

The P89 trains were a variant of the P86 with fireproofing to allow them to run in tunnels; the two types could be coupled together to form 2-unit trains. The B92 trains are simply a second build of the B90 trains and the B2K are a variant to meet newer safety requirements; the three types can be coupled together to form 2-unit or 3-unit trains. The B09 trains are simply a second build of the B07 trains; the two types can be coupled together to form 2-unit or 3-unit trains.

The trains in Essen are due to all be withdrawn by the end of 2026.

Various engineers' vehicles were originally numbered 92 to 100 but subsequently renumbered in the 99x series:

990believed allocated in the past, details unknown
991not allocated
992Wickham CT30 crane trolley, also reported as 753
993Battery loco "Kylie"
994Diesel loco "Kevin Keaney"
995not allocated
996 to 999flat wagons

In addition, unit 88 has been withdrawn from passenger use and converted to a dedicated shunting vehicle. Unit 39, out of service since 2016-05-13, was scrapped on 2022-10-26, the first of the fleet to be disposed of.

The line now operates using Seltrac S40 signalling, which is only fitted to B92 and later units. This is the reason for the conversion of the B90 units and the disposal of the P86 and P89 units.

All routes are now capable of taking three units coupled together, though Cutty Sark, Elverson Road, Gallions Reach, and Royal Albert stations have not been lengthened and use selective door opening. The station extension work required moving South Quay station to a new location further east. Single units have always been forbidden in the tunnels to Bank because of the risk of a brake failure on the 1:17 incline.

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