Through the Blitz and beyond, the part the Underground played in World War Two was a complex one. Nowhere was this more true than the role it played in sheltering the civilian populace from aerial attack. The part platforms at places like Aldwych played, and the tragedy at Bethnal Green are now relatively well known. What is perhaps less well known, however, is the role played by the Deep Level Shelters - the remains of which can still be seen at street level.
We’ve looked at various elements of London’s transport infrastructure from the air before – now it’s Crossrail’s turn. With the exception of the Connaught Tunnel approach, the photos below broadly divide into tunnelling portals and stations. The photos highlight the variety of sites Crosssrail features – some long, some compact. The station shots, particularly those focused on the stations in the central section, also highlight how tight space is within the ...
With Kings Cross drawing the eye to the north, it is easy to forget that work is still underway at Blackfriars. We last covered Blackfriars in detail at the beginning of last year when we looked at the bridge work carried out during the Christmas Blockade. Since then, much has happened – including the reopening of the Underground station. The new entrance Platform level at Blackfriars My colleague Mwmbwls will be looking in detail at Blackfriars at a later date, but above ground, there are ...
St Pancras welcomes its first TGV - No. 951 'La Poste', a postal/freight unit. The visit was both a test ad a PR exercise, carried out by freight consortium EuroCarex to demonstrate the viability of freight services through the tunnel and onto HS1 itself.
Opened by the London, Chatham & Dover Railway in 1865, the branch line to Crystal Palace High Level station was built to serve the Crystal Palace. The destruction of Paxton's glass wonder saw a serious decline in traffic and the branch line finally closed in 1954, but some elements still remain if you know where to look.
With the Overground, Crossrail and the London Underground upgrades having dominated the Capital's transport scene, it's easy to forget that the next few years will see major changes for its surface terminals as well. We start our look at London's Terminals with Kings Cross, where a major redevelopment project that arguably started almost fifteen years ago is now close to completion. It is a project that will reach an important milestone on Monday 18th March, when the new Western Concourse will ...
This is the final part of our look at how freight may become the Achilles’ heel for rail planners in London. The first article provided some context, looking at the various strategies, the national flows and the issue of loading gauge. Then we explored the main intermodal (container) traffic flows through London in more detail. Here we explore some of the options and draw some uneasy conclusions – that whilst the RUS process has helped identify some of the problems, the investment ...
Some readers have spotted that we have not reported on the developing situation at Farringdon for a while. It's nice to know you noticed and care and we are sorry to have kept you waiting. The general approach we were/are taking with Thameslink is almost on the basis of an "annual review," and Spring is always a good time to review new works (the "then" and "now" scenario provides a handy hook upon which an article can be based). We'll be starting that review this year with London Bridge, but ...
We last saw Crossrail's Tunnel Boring Machines (TBMs) in Germany last year. The first two - out of eight that the project will need in total - are now at New Paddington Yard and will begin tunnelling shortly. It thus seems a good time to take a final look at these, and the Royal Oak Portal itself, before they begin their journey beneath the capital.
As you may have noticed already, we’ve made some layout changes to the way the homepage now works on the site. By default (the key word there being “default”), it now no longer lists out the full text of all articles, instead providing a short extract followed by a click through to read the full article. We thought long and hard about whether to make this change, as traditionally we’ve always outputted the full article. There’s a couple of reasons why ultimately we ...
The more we looked at rail freight in London the more we realised the significant challenges it poses, including to TfL’s aspirations for the Overground and its ‘strategic interchanges’. As the network in London reaches capacity it quickly becomes clear that choices will need to be made between providing paths for freight vs passenger, and that might actually require reductions in passenger services. London’s growth has focused a burgeoning travel demand on same city core ...
Following on from yesterday’s article, which included photos of the steam test at Baker Street on Sunday morning, below are a selection of photos of the same Special Train at Edgware Road and Earl’s Court. As several commentors on the previous piece pointed out, it appears that the locomotive was indeed in light steam for most of the exercise. This really does make for a stunning contrast with the surrounding modernity (which, in some cases, isn’t even that modern). All these ...
Last night, at 0100, a special train left Lillie Bridge depot. Bracketed by L24 and L26, it was a very different configuration from that normally seen by passengers (not least because it included Sarah Siddons, the heritage locomotive), but then many of the Underground’s out-of-hours are. Having reached Earl’s Court at 0135 (via Olympia), this particular configuration then ran via the District line to Edgware Road before proceeding to Baker Street. It was at Baker Street that ...
In our previous posts on the shape of London’s rail network, we looked at how our infrastructure legacy gives rise to the pattern of services which concentrates demand onto the city core and its ring of termini. While London’s population and travel to work area have grown enormously, the core has largely remained the same as it was in the 1860s. The challenge is to reshape the network to expand the city core and break free from this legacy. New cross-city lines such as Crossrail and ...
With new Rolling Stock now appearing on much of the London Underground, it seems an opportune moment to take a step back and look at some trains of times past. Below are a selection of photos showing various rolling stock in the seventies. These pictures were all taken by Nick Agnew, whom we thank for allowing us to reproduce them here, via MA. 1938 Tube Stock at Hounslow Central on the Piccadilly, July 1975. The train is about to head one station on to Hounslow West, then the Line’s ...
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