More than 100 documents relating to Board meetings about Crossrail have been released by Transport for London (TfL).
Dating back five years, the documents have been released to demonstrate that Sadiq Khan – the Mayor of London – and TfL were transparent in when they knew about the potential for delays to the scheme.
It comes after the opening of the Elizabeth line was pushed back from December 2018 by nine months.
Since then, a new agreement has been reached to finance the project, but there are real risks that even more delays will occur, punching a hole into expected income streams.
The London Assembly has previously claimed that it was ‘misled’ by the Mayor who, they claimed, knew of likely delays in July – a full month before the official announcement.
The documents reveal that the Mayor and TfL executives were briefed on 26 July that the official opening date was at “high risk.”
However, the documents also show that a couple of weeks later, the forecast from Crossrail for the official opening date remained 9 December.
It is clear from the documents that both TfL and Mr Khan were not made aware of definite delays until the Crossrail Board took the decision on 29 August.
Former Chairman of the project, Sir Terry Morgan, said: “We have always had to separate fact from concerns.
“The fact is that we did not have a formal position to take until 29 August. We did brief internally about concerns that we had at a Board meeting and indeed in briefings with the Mayor, but the Mayor did not have any information of the sort that we provided on 30 August any day earlier than that date.”
However, the London Assembly Transport Committee Chair, Caroline Pidgeon MBE AM, responded: “It is now clear that the Mayor was told on July 26 that Crossrail’s opening date was at “high risk”.
“TfL have released a lot of news but not the information we asked for.
“We summonsed TfL’s weekly updates to the Mayor and these have been published, apart from a suspicious missing period in July-August.”