Monday 30 May 2016

Stuck on 1962

Two lost Underground stations, connected by tunnels now empty of passengers: Euston is full of secrets. When the old station and its famous Doric arch were replaced with the current building, access to the Tube was also updated and on 29 April 1962, the old passages were closed to the public. With no reason to change the advertising, these posters - many torn and ragged - were left behind as a sort of time capsule. 


The passage was originally built to link the City & South London Railway's station (on what is now the Bank branch of the Northern Line) to the Charing Cross, Euston & Hampstead Railway's (now the Northern Line's Charing Cross branch). The C&SLR had opened their building on Eversholt Street in May 1907; it was lost in the 1960s demolitions. The CCE&HR's Leslie Green building can still be seen on the corner of Drummond Street and Melton Street, although it now houses ventilation equipment for the Victoria Line. 

A few remnants of the original decor remain. This tiled frieze has been painted over, but the distinctive green colour shows through here and there.

The tunnel joining the two stations below ground could be entered from the mainline station by lift. The lift shaft is now empty. 

However, traces of the ticket office still remain.
I visited the passages on one of the London Transport Museum's Hidden London events. All current tours of Euston are sold out, but there are still a few places on visits to Clapham South and Down Street. Maybe one day, they will offer visits to another advertising time capsule?

A London Inheritance and IanVisits also took the tour. 


MichaelH said...

Thanks for posting these pictures - they are wonderful. I like the layered effect, as if someone has at some stage half-heartedly tried to scrape the posters off the walls. Hope you weren't expected to climb up that ladder by the way!

CarolineLD said...

Thank you - and thankfully not!

HughB said...

Isn't that ticket office fabulous? It almost makes queueing a pileasure! There are even directions for which side to queue, and someone has (recently?) wiped off the sign above the window. I suppose the money isn't available now, but it would be nice if that much trouble were taken over things nowadays.

Alan Burkitt-Gray said...

Caroline -- lovely pictures. I went on one of those tours too (my son is one of the volunteer guides with the Transport Museum, so it was a trial tour for friends and family), and took some very similar pictures. I think they have been so successful that the museum is continuing to look for new locations. Aldwych also has some old posters.
I've no idea whether it's still accessible, but 30-odd years ago I went on a tour of the old C&SLR tunnels from London Bridge to King William Street and back, that were replaced when the line was extended. There were lots of WW2-era posters from when it was used as an air-raid shelter. The London Bridge access point long ago disappeared because of the Jubilee line and then the Shard and the rebuild of London Bridge mainline station.

CarolineLD said...

Hugh, it's rare there's anyone in the ticket offices we do have now. TfL has closed most of them; unfortunately, the machines can't answer questions.

Alan, lucky you to get on a trial tour! They obviously worked - our volunteer guides were excellent. And even luckier to have seen the disused tunnels to King William Street.