By Casey Jones, Railways Correspondent
London Underground is introducing luxurious first-class carriages so well-heeled commuters do not need to mix with common riff-raff.
While normal Londoners must squash into packed sweaty and smelly carriages, toffs can enjoy their trip through the capital in an ornate carriage with leather chairs and a fully-stocked bar.
A man in a crisp white jacket will recharge glasses and serve fine sandwiches and canapes to passengers.
The news was revealed exclusively to the Suffolk Gazette after an alert reader spotted a sign at Holborn this evening.
While anyone with money will enjoy the new posh commuting experience, to be introduced first on the Central Line, not everyone is happy, describing it as elitist and Victorian in nature.
City worker Lorraine Fisher, 34, was furious: “Traveling on the Tube when it’s busy is difficult enough, but knowing these snobs in the next carriage are lounging around quaffing champagne is too much.
“One first-class carriage will take around 20 people at most, meaning less space for the rest of us squished together 150 at a time.
“I really think London Underground should do a u-turn.”
But bosses are not likely to back down. They had intended a grand announcement next week, with the first luxury carriage officially opened by Jacob Rees-Mogg.
But the sign spotted by our reader today was put up early in error, letting the cat out of the bag.
A London Underground insider said: “The bosses are furious this has got out early, but fair play to the Suffolk Gazette for getting the scoop. The service will start on Central Line trains and then move to the Circle Line, where passengers will be able to go round and round until they’ve finished at the bar.”
First-class carriages were removed from the London Underground network in 1940 after the outbreak of World War Two. But now things have calmed down a bit, they are to make a sensational return.
It’s not the first time this newspaper has broken a top tube-related story. A few years ago, we were the first to reveal a new Anglian Line would run underground from Suffolk to London.
However, some people now believe this story was simply the work of a creative Ipswich copywriter.