Plan Ahead for this Weekend's Carnival

Transport for London offers advice to people travelling around Notting Hill

If you are heading for the Notting Hill Carnival this weekend, Transport for London is offering advice on getting to and around Europe's biggest street festival.

This year, Sunday August 30 and Monday August 31, the Carnival is celebrating the 'emergence of carnival' as part of the build up to its 50th Anniversary in 2016.

The origins of the Notting Hill Carnival date back to 1964 when the Capital's Caribbean communities began celebrating their culture and traditions. What is now known as the two day Carnival officially began in 1966 and includes a fantastic selection of live music, which ranges from reggae to dub to salsa. The celebrations also include soca floats and steel bands.

Here's the full schedule:

Saturday August 29 - Panorama, a free open air annual steel band competition for the whole family, steel band and general music lovers, held at Emslie Horniman Pleasance centre

Sunday August 30 - J'overt marks the opening of the Carnival followed by Family Day, a jubilant Children's Parade showcasing flamboyant costumes along the carnival route

Monday August 31 - Monday Parade, The Grand Finale and main carnival parade - showcases a sea of vibrant colours as bands and floats in magnificent costumes dance to the tantalizing rhythms of carnival.

Travel advice is available at TfL's Notting Hill web page.

TfL says its services will continue to keep the Capital moving during the annual three day event. The dedicated Carnival webpage has details on how transport services will run during London's busiest annual event, including a map showing the nearest stations and bus routes.

Follow @TfLTrafficNews, @TfLBusAlerts and @TfLTravelAlerts on Twitter for all the latest information.

Motorists are advised to avoid driving in the Notting Hill area and West London across the Bank Holiday weekend, as a number of road closures will be in place from Saturday August 29 to early morning on Tuesday September 1.

The easiest ways to travel to and from the Carnival will be by Tube, bus, cycling or walking. However, some stations close to the Carnival will be closed or will be exit only, and some bus routes will be diverted or stop short of their journey. Public transport and road users are advised to plan their journeys in advance at the Notting Hill website or by contacting the 24-hour London Travel Information line on 0343 222 1234.

Due to road closures and the demand on public transport, customers are encouraged to consider walking part of their journey to and from the Carnival. Customers can plan their walking journey at TfL journeyplanner.

Fares and ticketing

Stations in west London will be very busy on both days of the Carnival. To save time and avoid queues, customers are advised to top up their Oyster card in advance or use their contactless payment cards. To find out more about Oyster and get a card, customers are encouraged to visit TfL fares.

London Buses

There will be additional buses serving the Carnival, however they will not enter the Carnival area from the first bus on Sunday morning until the first bus on Tuesday morning. To the south of the Carnival area, buses will start from Notting Hill Gate and to the north of the Carnival area buses will start from the Prince of Wales on Harrow Road. Some local buses will be on diversion so customers are advised to check before they travel here.

The routes that will be serving the Carnival area are: 6, 7, 16, 18, 23, 27, 28, 31, 36, 46, 52, 70, 94, 98, 148, 187, 220, 228, 274, 295, 316, 328, 332, 390, 414, 452, N7, N16, N18, N28, N31, N98 and N207.

Additional buses will run on routes 2, 205 and 436, which can be found on journey planner as 2X, 205X and 436X.

London Underground

Tube and Rail will be the best way to get around London on the weekend, although stations in west London will be busier than usual.

Some stations close to the Carnival will be closed or will be exit only, as follows:

Ladbroke Grove station will be closed all day on Sunday 30 and Bank Holiday Monday August 31, as the station is located along the Carnival route;
Latimer Road station will be closed at 11.30pm on both Sunday and Monday, as the station is located along the Carnival route;
Notting Hill Gate station will be exit-only between 11am and 7pm, and there will be no interchange between District, Circle and Central lines on Sunday. On Monday, this station will be exit only and District and Circle lines will be non-stopping between 11am and 7pm.
Westbourne Park and Royal Oak stations will be exit-only between 11am and 6pm, and closed from 11.30pm on Sunday and Monday;

Carnival goers are advised to consider using alternative stations to get to the event. If customers are travelling on the Circle or District lines, they should consider using Bayswater station as an alternative between midday and 7pmon Sunday and all day Monday as trains will not be stopping at Notting Hill Gate.

Customers are advised to consider using Paddington station (Hammersmith & City and Circle lines) instead of Notting Hill Gate or Royal Oak as both stations will have entry restrictions. Other nearby stations include High Street Kensington, Holland Park, Queen's Park and Shepherd's Bush.

Customers are also advised that until Sunday, there will be no Victoria line services between Walthamstow Central and Seven Sisters due to planned engineering works, which will enable more trains to run along the entire line. More information is available here .

London Overground

The nearest London Overground stations to the Carnival area are Willesden Junction, Kensal Rise, Kensal Green, Queen's Park and Shepherd's Bush.
For up to date information on Tube, DLR and London Overground services follow @TfLTravelAlerts.

National Rail

Network Rail are conducting some planned engineering works across the rail network over the Bank Holiday weekend and some train operators are amending their timetables over the August Bank Holiday. More information is available at


To create a safe environment during the Carnival, there will be extensive road closures in the Notting Hill, Ladbroke Grove and Westbourne Park areas because of the Carnival. Roads will close from 2am on Sunday until around 11.59pm and on Monday from 7am until around 5am on Tuesday. Traffic is likely to be slow moving in the area, including the A5 (Edgware Road), Harrow Road, Holland Park Avenue, Notting Hill Gate and Bayswater Road so drivers should avoid the area if possible, or allow more time for their journeys.

For the latest information on how the roads are operating, drivers are advised to check before they travel at the TfL website and follow @TfLTrafficNews (roads).


August 28, 2015