1. Transport
  2. Rail
February 23, 2016updated 20 Jul 2021 3:32pm

23 possible reasons why London's Crossrail has just been renamed the Elizabeth Line

By Jonn Elledge

Because  Queen Elizabeth II is the longest reigning queen regnant (one who reigns in her own right, rather than one who is just married to a king) in human history.

Because on 9 September 2015, she surpassed her great great grandmother Queen Victoria to become the longest-reigning monarch in British history.

Because Queen Victoria already has her own line.

Because Queen Elizabeth doesn’t have a line named after her. Except for the Jubilee line which is named after her 1977 silver jubilee, even though that line didn’t open until 1979, and nobody celebrates their 27th anniversary.

Because Crossrail will serve Stratford, where the Queen Elizabeth II Olympic Park is.



Because Queen Elizabeth doesn’t already have enough things named after her.

Because Crossrail will be purple on the map and purple is a bit royal.

Because the new line goes through Slough which is basically the same place as Windsor, and the Queen’s surname is Windsor.

Because the Queen has a castle in Windsor, too.

Because the line will serve the Royal Docks.

Because the new line will serve Romford, and everyone knows that Liquid & Envy is the Queen’s favourite nightspot.

Because being the eldest child of the next in line to the throne during the Abdication Crisis of 1936, and then successfully not dying for the next eighty years, makes Queen Elizabeth the greatest living Briton.

Because she did much of the tunnel boring with her bare, queen hands.

Because, as well as the Victoria line, Queen Victoria has Victoria Station, Victoria Coach Station, Victoria Street, Queen Victoria Street, Victoria Park and the Royal Victoria Dock named after her, so Liz has got a lot of catching up to do.

Because Crossrail is actually a quite silly name.

Because the Elizabeth line is genuinely more memorable, if we’re going to be fair about this.



Because London transport has a proud history of using proper names, rather than numbers, letters or descriptive labels for its names, and this fits in with that tradition.

Because the bits of the network that don’t fit that tradition, like the London Overground, are clunky and difficult to navigate, so TfL is rumoured to be looking at the line names for that too (we suggest Philip, William, George, etc).

Because the Queen has magical powers and by sharing her name with the line she will protect it from disaster.

Because after 68 years married to Prince Philip it’s about time something nice happened to the Queen.

Because it’s worth it just to see her smile.

Because Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is a republican and TfL is trolling him.

Because Boris Johnson wants to be prime minister.

Jonn Elledge is the editor of CityMetric. He tweets as @jonnelledge.

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