The tube has some strange timetable quirks such as the Circle/Hammersmith and City lines which run odd workings from Ealing or Upminster plus a handful of late night trains through Central London.
It begs the question how early one can get out into the sticks – eg Bucks, Essex, Herts – do any strange workings enable it? Alas there’s none! The first Metropolitan from London to the ‘sticks’ is a 05.24 Baker St -Watford 06.23 and a 05.49 Baker St – Chesham 06.47. Not much use is it?
Will there be a Night Tube service out to the sticks when the Met finally joins the club? I think not.
Yet there’s an unofficial Night Tube service to Epping – right out in the sticks!
It’s a small quirk that’s come about due to staff and train rostering for the Night Tube services.
The first trains from Epping (05.10 etc) are based at Loughton hence these start their journey from there up to Epping at 04.56 onwards.
Only on Saturday mornings the 05.10am from Epping to London starts at White City depot. It starts from here at 03.55 and passes Oxford Circus at 04.09. This means Epping passengers can leave Central London far earlier, arriving home by 04.55.
Its not just one train. The next four out of White City depot also head straight to Epping! The 04.15, 04.35, 04.55, 05.15 from White City arrive out in the sticks an hour later.
It means the unofficial Night Tube to Epping runs every 20 minutes from Oxford Circus between 04.09 – 05.29 well before normal Saturday services start at 05.48. There’s none on Sundays.
The journeys arent publicised but exist as the above screen grabs from TfL’s Plan a Journey show.