London's Underground's Last Wooden Escalator To Be Removed

By M@ Last edited 56 months ago
London's Underground's Last Wooden Escalator To Be Removed


One of the 'secrets of the Central Line' featured in our recent video is about to vanish. As part of the redevelopment of Greenford Station, a unique escalator with wooden treads will be replaced by a metallic one.

Such escalators were common until the King's Cross fire of 1987. That disaster prompted their gradual replacement, and Greenford has the last remaining example.

The station upgrade will also include step-free access, a wider staircase and a radar key toilet at platform level. The work should be complete by summer 2015.

Greenford is also one of the few stations to have an escalator leading up from ground level to the platforms. The new upgrade work will add yet another peculiarity: step-free access will not be via a vertical lift, but by an incline lift running parallel to the escalator. This is unique on the Tube network, though not the only one in London. Several Crossrail stations will also receive incline lifts in coming years.

Last Updated 13 September 2013



David W

no, i must see it again before it goes


ah progress I suppose...

John Cooney

When does the work commence? I want to see it before it goes!


Work has already started. One side is closed off for the first replacement. The other wooden escalator is still in action. Presumably when the first one is replaced they'll start on the second.

London Historians

Was meaning to pop along and check it out for some time. Too late now.

Nota Bene

Hope they're not going to just throw it away...could make some interesting items out of the parts!

Dave K

Gutted, hope I manage to see it before it gets removed all together.


I just saw this today! I will definitely visit Greenford JUST to see the escalator before it's replaced!


Is the wooden escalator still there? if so I will plan a trip down there next week

Dave K

Oh hell, I was in London on Saturday, if only i'd known! I thought it had been done months ago!

Geoff Marshall

i'm on my way down there now. Geoff's ETA at Greenford is 3.45pm... who's with me? :-)

Geoff Marshall

And i'm back. The old wooden escalator is already stopped and closed off with a Tensa barrier - i couldn't go on it. Just got pictures for the very last time!

New shiny 'up' escalator already in place and running, work starts on dismantling the wooden one tomorrow... and it's all over folks...


It's part of history, it's a real shame it can't stay.