My understanding is that the earliest driver training could start for this line is in mid-January. Due to further faults causing several pauses in testing, mileage accumulation has only just started again on new trains and it will be probably be the new year before the first units could be delivered to Transport for London (TfL) for operation, as per the contract to Arriva Rail London.
As the best agreement TfL could strike with West Midlands Trains is the phased return of the six remaining diesel trains between January and March, there will still be a gap before the electric trains can take over the Gospel oak to Barking Line service, requiring bus substitution. At the moment, it seems that the earliest the electric trains could take over the service is mid March. Is this correct, and if so is it an acceptable outcome to you?