Tonight, I got on a Victoria line train at Oxford Circus and needed to change to the Northern line at Kings cross for the Angel. Unfortunately, I tiook the wrong exit from the platform and ended up walking a lot longer than I should down pedestrian tunnels and up and down stairs.
But I eventually made it and got a 38 bus at the Angel to bring me home.
I’ll be glad, when Crossrail is finished, so that I can get home a lot easier.
The replacement trains for the sub-surface lines of London Underground, show a lot of clever thinking to deliver effectively two different but identical trains.
For the Metropolitan line, an eight car train is needed, with a generous proportion of seats, as the line goes a long way into Metroland.
For the Hammersmith and City, District and Circle lines, a seven car train is needed, with longitudinal seating.
Bombardier came up with the S Class train, which satisfies both these requirements. It is a unique design for the Underground, in that it is through-gangway train, where you can walk from end-to-end.
The replacement trains for the rest of the Underground, will probably borrow heavily on this design.
I travel on these trains about once a week or so and feel they are a great improvement on the previous trains. I first used them, during the Olympics to get back from Wembley Stadium, where they were able to move 1,500 or so people a time away from the stadium, in an air-conditioned train. The A Class trains they replaced had more seats, but a smaller capacity and a ventilation system from the 1960s.
I took this picture on the Southbound platform, at The Angel, this morning.
How could the second train arrive before the first? Do they have an overtaking line to the north of the station?
In the end, it arrived in under three minutes.
Last night, as I was coming back from Burnley, I deliberately got to the front of the train and walked straight out through the gates at Kings Cross station. You can see how the square is coming together and soon, you’ll walk straight out and to either the buses or the Underground entrance on Euston Road.
one of the peculiarities of the London Underground, is that unlike many metros in the world, trains don’t necessarily arrive on the platform in the same direction. For example Southbound trains on the Northern line at the Angel, arrive from left to right, whereas those on the Victoria line at Highbury and Islington station, arrive from right to left. I think the Victoria line is the most inconsistent, with Northbound trains at Highbury and Islington station, arriving from left to right.
At Kings Cross yesterday, I wanted to make sure I was in the rear section of the train, as this would mean I didn’t have to walk a long way back down the platform. I walk pretty straight these days, but I do think it is safer to get off the platform as quickly as possible.
There is no indication at Kings Cross to say from which direction the trains will arrive and i think it would be a good idea, if this was indicated on the platforms. Perhaps a big arrow above the adverts or a little sign saying from which direction the trains arrive.
It would have two effects.
Like with me yesterday, you’d probably be more likely to get in the right carriage for your home station.
But also because it would forewarn passengers of the direction of trains, it might be just that bit safer, and we got a few less accidents on the platforms.
Note that Transport for London already announce on the Victoria line, which side the doors open at each station to help passengers, so it wouldn’t be that radical.
The Jubilee line is to be shut for more than 30 days over the next two years in central London because acidic water is eating into the cast iron linings of the tunnel walls.
Services will be halted in both directions between Finchley Road and Waterloo for major repairs costing £40 million.
Why has the Jubilee line got it in for London, as when a line goes berserk, it is often that line, which was opened for the Millennium? When I use the line, there seems to be a higher chance of trouble compared to the other lines.
It would appear that the problem is in the first section of the Jubilee line that was built in the 1970s. The tunnels seem to use iron linings and it is interesting that Crossrail is manufacturing all of its linings out of concrete.
I do wonder what other problems will turn up on London’s most troublesome Underground line!
At least on the BBC News tonight, they showed how the repair techniques were being tested in the old Charing Cross platforms, which were last used for Skyfall. So hopefully, they’ll find a way to cut the closure of the line to a minimum.
This report on the BBC web site talks about a survey of Londoners most disliked and loved Underground stations.
Bank came out as the most disliked and it is not one of my favourites. Having thought I’d cracked getting from the DLR to the 141 bus in an efficient way, this morning I found it was all change today and we had to use a lift, as another escalator was being replaced.
I suspect, it’ll be all right in the end! But when will that be?
The survey also ranks the most disliked stations as Bank, Acton Town, Oxford Circus, Aldgate East and Brixton. I’ve never been to Acton Town, but my five stations in this category with reasons would be
- Bank – It’s just a confusing maze.
- Green Park – So far to walk.
- Clapham North – Dangerous platforms
- Kings Cross – A massive labyrinth
- Euston – Tired and pokey!
The public’s most loved stations are Canary Wharf, Baker Street, London Bridge, Charing Cross and Victoria, which is a pretty nondescript bunch, except for the first. Baker Street isn’t very special except for the tiles, London Bridge is another maze, Charing Cross is rather dingy and Victoria at the moment is a building site.
I would make my list of five from these stations.
Canary Wharf – Just spectacular
Canning Town – Everything an interchange should be.
Farringdon – On completion of Crossrail and Thameslink, it could be the best.
Stratford - The Olympic hero!
I met this harpist for the second time yesterday, in Oxford Circus Underground station.
The guy in the poster is showing an interesting expression!
It’s good to hear music, of any type of decent quality wafting through the tunnels. In fact, I don’t think, I’ve heard anything underground, that anybody would complain about.
Everywhere there are adverts for Mormons.
I suppose religious adverts on the buses follow the same rules as films. The more adverts there are. the worse the religion.
It gives me a bit of a problem in that I don’t travel on a bus advertising something I don’t like or disapprove of. Oxford Circus is also wall-to-wall with the adverts, so that gives me another problem, as that is a difficult station to avoid.
This post is to remind me not to, until they finish the current works!
I used it on Tuesday and found that the down escalator was under maintenance, so I had to walk down.
That wasn’t too much of a pain, but I like to avoid it if I can.
This morning, when I wanted to get to Oxford Circus, I found that the whole entry was choked and so I decided to walk to Holloway Road instead.
The latter was suggested by one of station staff, who obviously thought I could walk it.
So that must have been some sort of back-handed compliment.
incidentally, Highbury and Islington station is one of those with three escalator positions and only two escalators. I wonder if in the next few months, they do the sensible thing and install the third escalator.
If they do, surely they should have done that before taking the down escalator out of action for several months.
I don’t think it was working yet, but Pedestrian Countdown has arrived in Hackney, as this picture shows.
I was on my way from my doctors to Paddington station, so I was going to Haggerston station, which you can see in the background.
It is not a simple journey and it requires two changes at Canada Water and Waterloo stations. The latter is a change to avoid.
At least there is a moving pavement in the long tunnels. I think of all London’s main stations, Paddington is the most difficult to get to from Hackney and other parts of North East London.