Local residents will not be able to use the Northern Line from local stations in Highgate, Archway and Finchley at weekends until December 2011 after tube operator, Tubelines, announced 82 weeks of weekend closures, starting on 27 March 2010.
The Liberal Democrats have launched a petition against the closures, saying that they will affect residents travelling into central London and will also have a detrimental effect on local traders in Highgate High Street and Archway, who rely on shoppers travelling in on the tube.
Liberal Democrats on the Greater London Authority (GLA), concerned that the issue has turned into a fight between a Tory Mayor and a Labour Government, rather than focusing on the needs of Londoners, have launched a five-point plan to ensure a better upgrade of the Northern Line, without the mass suspensions currently planned.
Cllr Martin Newton, Liberal Democrat Transport Spokesperson, comments:
“Local residents rely on the Northern line to get around at weekends. Twenty months of suspensions just increases the misery faced by travellers on the ‘Misery Line’.”
Lynne Featherstone, MP for Hornsey and Wood Green, adds:
“We all want a better Northern Line, but not when local residents have to put up with 82 weeks of weekend closures.
“Many local traders in Highgate and Archway rely on trade coming from tube users. It is unfair for these businesses, already feeling the pinch due to the economic situation, to bear the brunt of these closures.
“I hope that local residents and traders alike will support our fight against the closures and the Liberal Democrats’ five point plan to a smoother upgrade of the Northern Line.”