A rail user group has hit out at Transport for London (TfL) after commuters turned up to Overground stations to find rush-hour trains on an overcrowded route were not running.

Barking – Gospel Oak Rail User Group said it is a “kick in the teeth” for customers who have been waiting months for the arrival of new larger capacity electric trains to relieve pressure on the line.

But TfL insists it still operates the additional services on the Barking to Gospel Oak line “as often as we possibly can” but pointed out that demand for the rush-hour trains drops during the summer months.

Glenn Wallis, secretary of BGORUG, said: “This is the final kick in the teeth for our passengers.

“They’ve endured months without trains while Network Rail was electrifying the line, and now the trains are back, they get a reduction in service.

“BGORUG no longer has any confidence in TfL’s promises.”

The line serves four stations in Waltham Forest – Blackhorse Road, Walthamstow Queen’s Road, Leyton Midland Road and Leytonstone High Road.

It comes as TfL told customers on the Overground line they will have to wait until November to reap the benefits of new air-conditioned electric trains, which have been delayed by months.

In June, TfL unveiled 54 ‘Class 710’ trains which include lighting and temperature control, Wi-Fi, USB charging points and digital screens showing real-time travel information.

The four-car trains, built by Bombardier Transport in Derby, will double the capacity of the current diesel stock to almost 700 commuters per train.

The trains will be tested on the newly electrified Barking to Gospel Oak line over the summer.

Rory O’Neill, TfL’s general manager of London Overground, said: “Additional trains have been temporarily operating on the Gospel Oak to Barking route to manage congestion during the busiest times and ahead of new, longer trains being introduced later this year.

“Typically during the summer months we see a drop in demand but will continue to operate these services as often as we possibly can.

“We recommend customers check before they travel and choose a timetabled service when planning a journey to prevent any inconvenience.”

Mr Wallis said this loss of just one peak-time additional service mean customers may be forced to wait up to half an hour on platforms for the next train.

Speaking about the new electric trains, Jonathan Fox, TfL’s director of rail and sponsored services, said: “Our new state-of-the-art British built London Overground trains will be an exciting addition to London’s transport network and help boost capacity on some of the most busy and popular lines.

“We are very keen to see them introduced into service as soon as possible so our patient customers can benefit from the fully air-conditioned, walk-through trains with handy USB charging points and real-time passenger information screens.

“Over the summer, the new trains will undergo final rigorous testing and drivers will complete extensive training.

“We are now planning for the first trains to enter passenger service on the Gospel Oak to Barking route by November.”