Crossrail, the project to deliver the Elizabeth line east–west railway across London, is the largest construction project in Europe. The Crossrail Act 2008 outlined the principles of an execution strategy for delivery of the 10 year programme, which will see the new line fully operational in 2019. At the heart of the strategy was a vision for how the railway would be delivered through best practice and responsible procurement, via a project delivery partner, a programme partner, designers and contractors as well as development agreements with key stakeholders. From 2008 through completion of tunnelling in 2015 and into systems and architectural finishing works, this vision has remained constant. This paper outlines the execution strategy and how it came to remain intact as a basis of delivery throughout the life of the project.