Queen Elizabeth II dressed in yellow at Paddington station in London, to mark the completion of London's Crossrail project.

Elizabeth line opening 2022: Queen makes surprise visit to open Elizabeth line

The Queen has made a surprise appearance to officially open the completed Elizabeth line, named in her honour.

She was given an Oyster card and shown how to use it on a ticket machine.

The Queen smiled warmly as she met Crossrail and Elizabeth line workers and walked slowly as she made her way around the station concourse.

Elizabeth line customer experience assistant Kofi Duah said he was “thrilled” to present an Oyster card to the Queen and show her how it could be topped up on a machine.

The Queen did not top up the card, which was pre-loaded with £5 of credit.

Crossrail, the project to build the new east-west railway, was delayed and over budget due to numerous issues including construction difficulties and complications installing signalling systems.

It was due to be completed in December 2018 and was set a budget of £14.8 billion in 2010.

The total cost has been estimated at £18.9 billion, including £5.1 billion from the Government.

The Elizabeth line will boost capacity and cut journey times for travel across the capital.

It will stretch from Reading, in Berkshire, and Heathrow Airport, in west London, to Shenfield, in Essex, and Abbey Wood, in south-east London.

Trains will initially operate in three sections, which are expected to be integrated in the autumn.

The Elizabeth line, named in honour of the Queen in her Jubilee year, will open to passengers on May 24.

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