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In Pictures: Crossrail completes its first train tunnel under London

Crossrail has completed the construction of the first of its new railway tunnels under London

Crossrail tunnelling machine Phyllis has finished the first tunnel, 17 months after commencing its 6.8 km journey from Royal Oak in west London and Farringdon in central London.

Phyllis and six other Crossrail tunnelling machines have collectively passed 21.4 km of their 26 mile journey to build major new tunnels under London as part of works to deliver the most significant addition to London’s transport in a generation.

Its sister machine, Ada, is in the Holborn area and is due to complete tunnelling during the winter while another six machines will finish tunnelling next year.

During the coming weeks, Phyllis will be dismantled and its 130 metre trailer system will be removed from the tunnel via the recently completed Fisher Street shaft.

Crossrail is asking Londoners to submit ideas for items to be included in a time capsule at the Farringdon site to mark the first completed tunnel. Those with the winning suggestions will have the opportunity to be among the first to visit the completed tunnel later this year.

Crossrail programme director Andy Mitchell said: “Crossrail’s construction continues to move ahead at a significant pace. Crossrail has not only completed the first Crossrail tunnel under London but has reached the half-way point for our tunnelling machines with a phenomenal 13 miles of train tunnels constructed to-date.

“A further six tunnelling machines are currently hard at work constructing over 100 metres of new tunnel each day with major tunnelling due to complete next year.”

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