How to pronounce the London Overground lines

Overground lines

Transport for London (TfL) has just announced names for the London Overground lines. These lines already existed but were not previously named.

The pronunciation of these names isn’t straightforward, so here’s a guide:

The Lioness line

Named after the England women’s football team, the Lionesses.

IPA: /ˌlʌɪ ə ˈnɛs/

Notice the primary stress is on ness. The letter “o” is a schwa vowel.

The Mildmay line

Named after the Mildmay Mission Hospital in Shoreditch, which played an important role during the HIV/Aids crisis in the 1980s.

IPA: /ˈmʌɪld meɪ/

Notice the primary stress is on Mild. The vowel here is like in mice, not in miss. The /d/ can be deleted (but it’s recommended to pronounce it).

The Windrush line

Named in honour of the Windrush generation. These Caribbean communities helped rebuild post-war Britain from 1948.

IPA: /ˈwɪn(d)rʌʃ/

Notice the first vowel is like win, not wine. The /d/ is usually not pronounced (but you can pronounce it if you want).

The Weaver line

Named after the textile trade in East London, which has been shaped over the centuries by various migrant communities.

IPA: /ˈwiːvə/

Notice the first vowel is like weed, not wed.

The Suffragette line

Named to honour the suffragette movement in East London, which campaigned for the rights of working-class women.

IPA: /ˌsʌ frə ˈʤɛt/

Notice the primary stress is on the final syllable, which sounds like jet.

The Liberty line

Named to celebrate the freedom that London and its transport network offer.

IPA: /ˈlɪbəti/

Notice the first vowel is like lick, not leek or like.

Other tricky London names

You can find out how to pronounce tricky London stations like Marylebone, Southwark and Theydon Bois in my online tool here.