The dispute about the Night Tube has has led to strikes causing misery for millions of Londoners. It will be introduced this summer, but a poll by the Greater London Authority has found that a quarter of Londoners say they’ll never use it.
The GLA asked 1,000 people from across the capital their views on the Night Tube in a quarterly survey it carries out to canvas views about a range of issues. The poll found that 26% said they would never use the service and that jumps to more than a third when those who say they would use it less than once or twice a year are added.
Those who will never use it outnumber the hard core party animals it seems. 18% of those surveyed said they’d use the service every weekend which includes 8% of those surveyed who’d use it every Friday and Saturday.
Not surprisingly, the figures on intended use look very different when broken down into age groups. 60% of over 65s say they’ll never use it and 43% of those 55-64. But for younger people looking to enjoy their night out well into the early morning it’s a different picture. 49% of 18-24s say they’ll catch it every weekend, and for 25-34s it’s a massive 70%.
People in inner London are more likely to use the service than those in outer areas, and Asian people emerged from the survey with the lowest appetite for the service – 68% said they would ever catch a Night Tube compared to 85% of black people surveyed.
The service was due to start running last September but has been delayed by the dispute between Transport for London and the unions over pay, working hours and staffing. TfL is yet to confirm a start date but the Mayor, Boris Johnson, has said that it will start running at the end of July.
The service will run round the clock on Fridays and Saturdays on five lines – Jubilee and Victoria and most of the Central, Northern and Piccadilly lines.
While there is a clear age division on taking the Night Tube there was a lot more agreement on its benefits. 80% said that it would have a positive impact on London’s night time economy and 82% that it would be a good for those going to work overnight. London’s reputation as a 24-hour city will be enhance by the service according to 89% of those surveyed.
But there were also some negatives. 46% are concerned about an increase in anti-social behaviour and 41% are worried about noise.
The survey was conducted by telephone with a representative sample of Londoners on the 11-18th March by ICM on behalf of the GLA.