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Secrets of the London Underground. Starts Monday 19th July on Yesterday


Paul.Uni
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On 21/07/2021 at 12:00, Frond said:

(I didn't know the Aldwych branch had closed!!).

 

 

Steve

 

 

30th Sept 1994, the same day the Epping-Ongar service was withdrawn.

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3 hours ago, Edwin_m said:

I think if I saw that I'd wonder if he'd lost the leg due to an escalator accident. 

Which is exactly what UERL realised after a while, and so "Bumper" Harris was removed from this job.

 

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Hopefully Tim and the team are already planning/working on their next project. 

 

I was wondering what I would choose next, so far we have had architecture (not something I would have thought of but great) and the Underground  (ditto). Being an engineer  I would love something on the evolution of locomotives but I accept that will probably not appeal to the wider audience.

 

Any thoughts?

 

Steve

 

 

 

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Still plenty of hidden bits of the London Underground to cover, King William Street and the CSLR tunnels under the Thames towards Borough for a starter although that may have to wait until the Bank area upgrade works are finished I suspect.

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That's what I meant, plenty of material for a second series of the same subject I feel.  The list of subject covered in the remaining episodes of this series was linked to earlier in the thread.

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The same concept could be applied to other cities across the UK - Secrets of the Railways of [insert city name here] , as a series with one episode per city. Tim + a local expert explore interesting places not normally seen by the public.

I'm sure we can find plenty to keep him busy.

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Thoroughly enjoyed it, looking forward to the next one.  But I was a bit confused with the locations visited on the Aldwych branch.  Where is the very old station (with the original track etc.) positioned in relation to the 2 other sites visited?  Perhaps I missed a bit of commentary somewhere!

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Aldwych was built with two platforms but one was taken out of use after only a few years.  That is the sealed platform with original rails still in place used for numerous trials of station fittings and finishings.

 

The bit I had trouble working where it was, was the Waterloo direction buffer stop overrun tunnel which seemed to have original platform tunnel tiling but was somehow separate. 

 

Another thing I noted was that there was no train parked on the branch. Has that now been removed permanently?

 

Also, with the future rebuild of Holborn that was mentioned, will the track still remain in situe or is the branch to be severed completely?

Edited by John M Upton
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Bear in mind that Strand/Aldwych was meant to be the terminus of the Great Northern & Strand Railway. Plans changed when it became incorporated into the Piccadilly line, but the branch still ended up with two rail tunnels between Holborn and Strand, and two platforms at each end. Half that infrastructure was closed soon after opening as it wasn't needed.

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1 hour ago, 5050 said:

Thoroughly enjoyed it, looking forward to the next one.  But I was a bit confused with the locations visited on the Aldwych branch.  Where is the very old station (with the original track etc.) positioned in relation to the 2 other sites visited?  Perhaps I missed a bit of commentary somewhere!

There were 3 stations visited, Holborn, Aldwych, and Holloway Road, all on the Piccadilly line.

 

As built, Holborn had 4 platforms, 2 for the main Piccadilly line, and 2 for the Aldwych branch. For those who aren't familar with that part of the Underground, the Aldwych branch runs approximately North/South below Kingsway. At Holborn both the plarforms for the Aldwych branch were at the same level as the main Piccadilly East/Northbound track, the South/Westbound track runs below the Aldwych branch tunnels. The eastern platform was the dead end, and the track serving the western platform connected to the Piccadilly main East/Northbound track. There was a crossover just south of Holborn between the two running lines of the Aldwych branch. Aldwych was also built with 2 platforms. The western platform at Holborn and the eastern platform at Aldwych were taken out of use in 1914, and the track lifted in 1917.

 

There were originally no Central line platforms at Holborn as the Central station was "British Museum" a bit further west along High Holborn.  In the early 1930s the Central line platforms were added, and Museum station closed. 

 

The "very old track" without the "suicide pit" would have been at both Holborn and Aldwych.

 

55 minutes ago, John M Upton said:

Aldwych was built with two platforms but one was taken out of use after only a few years.  That is the sealed platform with original rails still in place used for numerous trials of station fittings and finishings.

 

The bit I had trouble working where it was, was the Waterloo direction buffer stop overrun tunnel which seemed to have original platform tunnel tiling but was somehow separate. 

 

Another thing I noted was that there was no train parked on the branch. Has that now been removed permanently?

 

Also, with the future rebuild of Holborn that was mentioned, will the track still remain in situe or is the branch to be severed completely?

 

As the track was still in situ and live at the time the programme was made, the buffer stop in the overrun tunnel at Aldwych would probably have been on what was the easternmost tunnel at Aldwych where the track was lifted back in 1917, or Tim & Siddy would not have been able to walk down to the buffer stop..

 

The Piccadilly line '73 stock is now the 2nd oldest on the Underground, the oldest is the Bakerloo's '72 stock. So I would imagine that the 3 car set has been retrieved so that is avaialble for use or possibly to be scavenged for spares as it was unique to the Piccadilly line. The '72 stock was the same design as the '67 Stock used on the Victoria line but without the ATO.

 

From the description of the rebuilding of Holborn in the programme, the new passageways would cut right through the branch tunnel. So the track would have to be lifted, and the trailing junction with the piccadilly main line removed as there would be no reason to leave in situ.    

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3 minutes ago, GoingUnderground said:

As the track was still in situ and live at the time the programme was made, the buffer stop in the overrun tunnel at Aldwych would probably have been on what was the easternmost tunnel at Aldwych where the track was lifted back in 1917, or Tim & Siddy would not have been able to walk down to the buffer stop..

 

That's what I thought. They had to take a detour to get there as there is a brick wall between it and the closed eastern platform.

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I've just been watching this week's episode which describes the flood gates at certain stations.

 

It left me wondering how the gates could be made absolutely watertight at the bottom where they crossed the tracks. You might suppose that there must have been gaps next to each rail for the flangeway; how did they manage to seal those?

 

[Edit] It looks as if there there was a piece that had to be slotted in by hand before the gates were shut...

 

Floodgate.jpg.7a99ab5a879a7a62372c93e74b0f575e.jpg

 

...which is also shown in this video. But that begs the question as to how the gaps would have been sealed when the gates were shut remotely from the central control room.

 

 

Edited by Andy Kirkham
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Just caught up with episode 2.  Not entirely sure that it was necessary to go so over the top about North End/Bull & Bush being all secret, its been a staple mention in books for decades and pretty easy to find the surface buildings if you know what you are looking for.

 

Good episode though.

 

Missed opportunity to mention the long since sealed off and forgotten (and I believe breached by a WW2 bomb) Embankment turning loop that was visible briefly on some of the plans being looked at.  Also I presume that the inclined disused passageway is what has become known as Pages Walk?  Supposedly haunted if you believe in that sort of thing.....

Edited by John M Upton
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10 hours ago, John M Upton said:

Missed opportunity to mention the long since sealed off and forgotten (and I believe breached by a WW2 bomb) Embankment turning loop that was visible briefly on some of the plans being looked at.  

Yes I agree more could have been made of that - constraints of fitting it into an hour I guess.  I've also read somewhere that the loop was breached by a bomb, and the tight curve that is the reason for "Mind the Gap" here is because the platform in question was formerly part of the loop, so bringing this in would have tied into both the floodgates and the "Mind the Gap" themes.  

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Pages Walk - used to service our equipment there. I could tell the stories of ghostly experiences I had on 3 occasions. I'm neither a believer, nor disbeliever, but my wife certainly believes (we have an experience from the NYMR which has no logical explanation), so I have an open mind.

 

Stewart

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On 30/07/2021 at 22:56, John M Upton said:

Also I presume that the inclined disused passageway is what has become known as Pages Walk?  Supposedly haunted if you believe in that sort of thing.....

 

The Aldwych excursion felt a bit disjointed, but I've enjoyed watching the team poking about the neglected corners of the UndergrounD!

 

I wonder if they're going to explore the bit of the Tube where Quatermass found the Martians?  :whistle: :crazy:

 

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I remember a horror film (possibly Hammer) based on the Underground whereby lone passengers were disappearing from platforms late at night, never to be seen again.  It transpired that they were being abducted and eaten by a Yeti type being who lived on the Underground system.  I thought it was hilarious when, after finally being hunted down and fatally wounded, he uttered his final words, "Mind the gap!"

 

Terry

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Death Line, also known as Raw Meat.  It was a cannibal, the last survivor of trapped construction workers who were entombed alive in a tunnel works collapse in the area around the semi fictional Museum station which was obviously based on the real disused British Museum station near Holborn.

 

Excellent performance from Donald Pleasense and a rather odd cameo from Christopher Lee as the Man from MI5...

Edited by John M Upton
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