The London Underground maybe a functional and sometimes frustrating piece of infrastructure for some, but for others it’s an architectural gem known the world over. Being over 150 years old, and made up of various former Victorian companies, the Tube has some of the most varied and interesting architectural designs of any mass transit system. None more prominent than the stations of Leslie Green.
In 1903 Leslie Green (born 1875) was appointed chief architect of the newly formed Underground Electric Railways Company of London who were busy in the process of building 3 new lines through the capital: Great Northern, Picadilly & Brompton Railway (Piccadilly Line), The Baker Street & Waterloo Railway (Bakerloo Line) and the Charing Cross, Euston & Hampstead Railway (Northern Line – Charing Cross Branch). Leslie Green was tasked with designing the stations for all 3 lines.
Green designed the stations in a bold uniform ‘Arts & Crafts’ style so that they would be instantly recognisable for the UERL’s new customers. Each station was constructed around a steel two story frame, with ox-blood red tiled façades with large semi-circular windows above wide entrance/exit gates. This December (2014) I went to take a closer look at some of the examples surviving on today’s Northern Line.
My route as follows, will take me from Tufnell Park on the High Barnet Branch in Zone 2 all the way down into the heart of the West End and will take me passed 8 Leslie Green stations.
A: Tufnell Park
B: Kentish Town
C: South Kentish Town (Closed)
D: Camden Town
E: Mornington Crescent
F: Euston (Old Entrance)
G: Goodge Street
H: Leicester Square
This is not the full list of stations Green designed on the Northern Line as I’m missing out the Hampstead (Barnet) branch to look at on another day. There are also a couple of stations omitted from the list that have since been redesigned/rebuilt at a later date, but I’ll talk about this more within the gallery annotations. Click on Tufnell Park to begin:
I hope you’ve enjoyed the gallery as much as I have putting it together. It’s my intention to re-run this walk with a better camera one day; as well cataloguing the rest of the Leslie Green stations on the Piccadilly, Bakerloo and Golders Green Branch of the Northern Line. See you there soon!
– Andy Carter