In Part 1 of our journey below Smithfield we followed in the footsteps of John Bull’s underground wander down the Widened Lines from Barbican. Here in Part 2 we leave him fumbling in the dark and emerge blinking into the light at Farringdon. We will not linger on the surface for long though because, as we have already discovered, the hidden delights lie underground. Scratch the surface, or dive beneath it, and you discover there is much more to the Smithfield area than meets the eye.
Initially, we’d planned just a single post looking at Farringdon as part of our (increasingly badly titled) London Terminals series, but John Bull’s recent wander through the old 'Widened Lines’ tunnels east of Farringdon gave a brief glimpse of an unexpectedly cavernous subterranean world. This prompted us to ask: just how much more is down there?
The photos below, taken earlier this month, give a quick insight into the state of play at Farringdon. The first two give a good view of the the temporary roadway down from Charterhouse Street over the ex-Thameslink Moorgate line (to allow lorries to take materials down to trackside and remove spoil). The third shows the piling now underway both for the extended platforms and the integrated ticket office. Both the elevated shots were taken from roof level on Cowcross Street. Thanks to G Cole for ...
We have commented previously on the vexed question of toilet facilities being included in the new station complex at Farringdon. The Islington Gazette carries a story of continued intransigence by Crossrail whilst Thameslink appears to propose a minimalist revamping approach as their contribution. Conspicuous by their absence, there is no mention of any response from TfL or LUL: A project to turn Farringdon station into one of London’s busiest transport hubs will not include any new ...
We have previously drawn attention to Farringdon’s colourful and somewhat smelly history. It would appear that whilst the station’s future should be less colourful it may, alas, not be any less aromatic. Farringdon stands in the valley of the River Fleet and is an area that, since the Middle Ages, has presented sanitary challenges. In 1309, the Mayor and Council of London introduced swinging fines on those who left human excrement in the streets – 40d for a first offence and 80d ...
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