Queen visits Crossrail construction site


""Construction staff and apprentices working on a Crossrail station beneath the streets of London have been treated to a special visit from the Queen.

Her Majesty took an industrial lift 28 metres underground to view works being carried out on the station at Bond Street, including part of a tunnel that will form a major piece of the project.

It was also announced that the new line, which will connect parts of Berkshire and Buckinghamshire to Essex, will be named Elizabeth in her honour.

Making the announcement, London mayor Boris Johnson said the naming provides a fitting tribute to the Queen.

He said: “Crossrail is already proving a huge success for the UK economy and, as we move closer to bringing this transformative new railway into service, I think it's truly wonderful that such a significant line for our capital will carry such a significant name from our country.

“As well as radically improving travel right across our city, the Elizabeth line will provide a lasting tribute to our longest-serving monarch.”

As part of the royal visit, the Queen unveiled the new purple line logo that will be used across the network when it opens in December 2018.

Work to dig the 26 miles of tunnels needed for the multibillion-pound Crossrail project has already been completed.

Visiting the site last year, David Cameron praised staff involved in the scheme, saying they had made him “dead proud to be your Prime Minister”.

Once up and running, a fleet of 200m-long trains will be used to transport more than half a million passengers every day.

It will run from Reading and Heathrow in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

In 1969, the Queen became the first reigning monarch to ride on the London Underground, after she opened the Victoria Line.

Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin, who was also present for the visit, said: “Given Her Majesty the Queen’s long association with UK transport, it is very fitting that this vital link across our capital will be named the Elizabeth line in her honour.

“This is an example of British engineering at its best and will transform the way people travel across London and beyond from 2018.”

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