Dean NicholasMapped: Fictional Stations On The London Underground
Need to get from the East End to Merton? Here's a trip you're unlikely to find to find on Journey Planner: jump on the District line at Walford East, and change at Bank for the Northern Line. Take it southwards, passing through Union Street station, until you reach Hickory Road, and you're done.
Bank aside, the stations listed above, alongside other plausible-sounding destinations like Vauxhall Cross, Hammersmith Bridge, Hobbs End and Putney Green, are among the many to have sprung from literature, film, television and even the slip of a cartographer's pen. We've done our best to place them onto the map above; below, you'll find a gallery of screenshots, models, and associated ephemera.
Vauxhall Cross, from the Bond film Die Another Day. Assumed to be an extremely long branch station on the Piccadilly line.
Vauxhall Cross, from the Bond film Die Another Day. Assumed to be an extremely long branch station on the Piccadilly line. Walford East station, on the District line (where it replaces Bromley-by-Bow on the map). Seen by millions of viewers each week in EastEnders. An episode in January 2011 featured scenes on the platform level, which were shot at East Finchley. Hobbs End featured in the cult horror film Quartermass and the Pit. It was a new station on the Central line that became the nexus for some spooky goings-on ('hob' being an old word for the devil). Ian Visits has more on a screening that featured a re-creation of the film's set.Queens Arcade featured in the Doctor Who episode 'Rose'. The entrance appears to be within a shopping centre. It was filmed at Queens Arcade, Cardiff. Duchess Street station. From the 1932 film Love On Wheels. 'West Ashfield' is a fake station at TfL's driver training facility in west London. IanVisits has an excellent site report with more photographs. (Photo / Ian Visits).Park Street, (presumably) a spur on the Piccadilly line after Hyde Park Corner. From The Passionate Friends, a 1949 film directed by David Lean. Filming took place at Bank. From an episode of Poirot called 'Hickory Dickory Dock'. The scenes were filmed at Morden. Annie Mole has more on this station, including further pictures and discussion.Union Street was a fictional disused station in the 2008 film 'The Escapist'. The filmmakers dressed the Aldwych tram tunnel to look like the station; this photograph was taken during a 2009 visit when the tunnel was open for an art installation. Crouch End station, from the film Shaun Of The Dead. A bit of a cheat, this one: there was a rail station at Crouch End, on a line between Finsbury Park and Alexandra Palace. However, the line closed in the 1954 and the station never had the roundel shown in this picture (which, according to the DVD commentary, now has pride of place in Simon Pegg's apartment).In Series 5, Episode 7 of BBC drama Spooks, the SAS break a siege at the Saudi embassy by blasting in via a fake disused Tube station that happens to lie beneath the building.One that didn't make the map: Hayne Street is a full-size model station at Disneyland Paris. Brick Park, a model Tube station at Legoland, Windsor. There's a video of the model which, in a nice meta-textual touch, has its own brick-based Tube map.Museum station. From the film Death Line. As a side note, there was real station called British Museum, but the film makes clear that the two are separate.Scene from 'Hanover Street'. The station is to the left of the bus.Click on map above for full, interactive version
Most of the stations are from film and television, the most famous being Walford East, the departure point from which the denizens of Eastenders go "up west". Others are based on stations that could have been part of the Tube network (Crouch End was part of a branch line until it closed in the 1950s), or used for TfL training purposes, such as West Ashfield and the stations that lead from it. One appears to have been created by an absent-minded Tube mapmaker while another is "located" in Paris, which would probably require a super-charged Oyster Extension Permit to reach.
In terms of geography, many of the stations are improbable and unnecessary, given the layout of the existing lines. A special award for needless complexity goes to Vauxhall Cross station, an underground lair full of gadgetry in Bond film Die Another Day: despite on-screen maps identifying it as part of the Piccadilly line, 007 accesses the station via a secret entrance on the southern side of Westminster bridge, nearly a mile from the eponymous transport interchange. The Piccadilly line is regularly abused in a such manner, with at least four single-stop branch stations, much like Aldwych was until it closed in 1994. Speaking of which, Aldwych is (unsurprisingly) the most commonly used filming location.
In selecting these stations, we've concentrated on those that (a) we can get a picture of, and/ or (b) we have been able to plot with a reasonable degree of certainty on the map. There are almost certainly more out there than listed in this selection, so if you know of something we've forgotten, or you want to quibble about some of the locations or methodology used, then dive into the comments and let us know.
Nick Cooper's excellent site on the Underground in film and TV was an indispensable resource in making this post. Thanks also to Ian Visits, Annie Mole, and Beth Torr for their photos / reports / DVD loans