Trains on the Northern line are currently undergoing a well-earned refurb, with new seats, repainted handrails and a few other minor touch-ups. We rode one the other day: click through the pictures above for a look.
The most conspicuous change is the handrails. Gone is the shade of bright yellow, replaced by a deep shade of blue that is similar to those used on the Victoria line and Piccadilly lines. It’s quite dark (one wonders why they didn’t just go for black to match the Northern line’s hue) and lends a muted, more sombre tone to the interior.
The other most notable change is the seat moquette, with the unsightly ‘royal blue’ (itself only introduced in 2007) replaced by the newer fabric, named Barman, that can also be seen on the Central line. Unfortunately, the bad news for your glutes is that the new seats are much harder, a result of Transport for London opting for more durable and less forgiving material.
The floor has also been replaced and, curiously, the redundant door button on the outside of the doors has been covered over, but the one inside the carriage remains unmasked. Also new, and quite unnecessary, is a sign warning passengers to beware the sliding door.
The trains are being gradually upgraded and rolled out throughout the year.
All photos by author except for shot of current Northern line train, by James Davies.