THE Elizabeth Line is on track to open later this year and the Slough council leader got a sneak preview of it in action.

Councillor James Swindlehurst trialled Crossrail’s completed section from Paddington to Liverpool Street as the line carried out safety tests this week.

The council leader thanked Transport for London (TFL) for letting him travel in the cab of the train yesterday (February 22).

READ MORE: Elizabeth line on track to open in the first half of 2022 - latest update

Cllr Swindlehurst shared a video of when the train was deep underneath London and travelling near to 60mph towards Bond Street.

Cllr Swindlehurst said he had a “great experience” travelling on Crossrail.

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He said: "I was very grateful that TfL invited me and a number of other council leaders on the route to look at the completed section of Crossrail from Paddington to Liverpool Street.

"This section will allow through services to begin later this year that will go from Reading all the way through to Essex."

Cllr Swindlehurst explained the service will be ramping up from June/July this year, with a full service operational in 2023.

And some through service trains will be runnning from Slough later this year.

He added: "What’s evident from the tour is works are complete and TfL are formally into testing signalling and other operational details to allow the line to open.

"Slough is already well connected with our links to Heathrow, London and access to the M25, M4 and M40 and being at the heart of this new rail line will significantly improve not just our connectivity but also opportunities for our residents and undoubtedly draw inward investment into Slough."

Slough Observer:

Howard Smith, director of the Elizabeth line, said: “It has been great to be able to show off some of the stations and trains ahead of the opening of the Elizabeth line in the first half of this year.

"This transformational railway has already brought improvements for people in London, Berkshire and beyond including step-free access, modernised ticket halls and new trains.

“From autumn this year, customers from Reading and Heathrow travelling into London will have direct journeys into the brand new central London Elizabeth line stations without the need to change trains.”

Slough Observer: Picture: Councillor James SwindlehurstPicture: Councillor James Swindlehurst

The full timetable is scheduled to launch by May 2023.