Lines: Metropolitan / Stations: Watford – Croxley – Moor Park – Northwood – Northwood Hills – Pinner – North Harrow – Harrow-on-the-Hill / Time: 3h 17m / Distance: 10.46 miles
Another long journey into Metroland to cover a bit more of the north west section of the network. Today’s walk covers the Watford branch of the Metropolitan line, then picks up at Moor Park where the last walk finished and continues down to Harrow-on-the-Hill.
There’s not much here. It’s a residential area, and the station was earmarked for closure at one point. If the Croxley Link project had been completed this station would have closed and the new route from Croxley would have linked across the town to Watford Junction station. The plans got as far as land physically being cleared for the new railway but the project was cancelled a couple of years ago, so Watford station survives.
Google Maps would have had me walk along the canal all the way into Rickmansworth and then all the way back along to Moor Park, to avoid a short section of road that includes going under a railway bridge without any pavements. It would have added almost two miles to my journey, so I took the risk and walked under the bridge instead.
Look, I don’t have anything against Pinner as an area, I just found it really bland. Maybe I was tired or not taking things in for whatever reason, it just didn’t feel like a particularly interesting place to be.
10.46 miles in 3 hours 17 minutes, and I finished there. This brings the total distance for the network up to 232.32 miles. This was quite a hilly walk without a great deal to look at or draw entertainment from, I wonder if that’s why I felt much more tired and hungry than usual once I’d finished.
Next time I’ll be picking up the Metropolitan line from Rayners Lane, where I got up to when I was doing the Piccadilly line in that area. I’ll head along the Met past Harrow-on-the-Hill and down to Wembley Park then join the Jubilee line and walk to the terminus at Stanmore.
It’s the furthest tube station from my house, it took nearly three hours to get there (and four months of postponing it because other things in life got in the way) but I finally made it to Chesham to walk the far end of the Metropolitan line.
Chesham is at the end of a single track branch line that runs from Chalfont & Latimer, while the other branch goes to Amersham. I’m walking from Chesham straight over to Amersham and then along that branch to Chalfont, ticking both off.
That’s the end of today’s walk, at 12.84 miles in 4 hours 11 minutes. It was a long one despite only having six visited stations, they’re quite far apart up here. So that makes the overall total now 221.86 miles.
Next time I’m back up in Metroland, this time for the Watford branch. It’ll be another long one, but hopefully I won’t wait four months for that one!
Lines: Circle, Hammersmith & City, Metropolitan / Stations: King’s Cross St. Pancras – Euston Square – Great Portland Street – Baker Street – Edgware Road – Paddington – Royal Oak – Westbourne Park – Ladbroke Grove – Latimer Road – Wood Lane – Shepherd’s Bush Market – Goldhawk Road – Hammersmith / Time: 3h 09m / Distance: 9.83 miles
The plan today is to pick up the Circle/H&C/Met at King’s Cross and head west. The Met goes off to the north west at Baker Street, and the other two lines continue down to Hammersmith.
The weather was absolutely terrible to start with. The forecast said it would be dry, but I got caught in a heavy shower. Once it cleared, though, it was a fairly pleasant (but cold) day.
Over the total series, this is my 200 mile point.
This section of Euston Road was part of my Northern Line walk, which took in Euston and Warren Street (but didn’t count Euston Square), and I’ll be back here again for the Victoria Line.
Earlier in the day there had been a demo against transphobic violence (and in favour of it, from the other side) but everyone had gone by the time I walked past.
This is the Circle/District/H&C Edgware Road, the Bakerloo one is separate and I’ll come to that on a future walk. Also in today’s walk, Paddington (Circle/H&C) which is a new counted station separate to Paddington (Circle/District/Bakerloo) which I’ve already been to, and the same with Hammersmith (Circle/H&C) as opposed to Hammersmith (District/Piccadilly) which I’ve done.
The next photo shows Grenfell Tower. I wasn’t sure how to do this, obviously it’s not a tourist attraction and shouldn’t be gawked at, but I wanted to take a picture of the memorial site and it’s there, looming over the whole area, I feel like it would have been wrong of me to not include it at all. One key purpose of this whole venture is to document the things that exist at street level across the tube network, and this is clearly a point of interest.
The routes of these walks were planned in spring 2017, before the fire. This should have been a footpath link next to a normal, everyday tower block that I wouldn’t have given a second thought. Instead, it stands there as a monument to the injustice of austerity, a reminder that this is what Kensington & Chelsea council, the richest borough in the country, think of the poor who live in the area – the insult that their lives were worth less than some cladding. And it reminds us of the failure of wider government, with many of the survivors still waiting for appropriate housing, all these months later.
Seeing the tower in person stirs up a lot of emotions. An intense grief and sadness for those who were killed and those who survived but lost everything. An intense anger at the people and organisations who let this happen. An intense love for everyone who suffered as a result of that fire and who fights for justice now, and an intense hunger for that justice to be found.
Google Maps gave me a route that doesn’t exist, around the top of Westfield, so I ended up having to go all the way to the bottom end and through the actual centre, which added a lot of distance to my journey, so I have no idea what the approximate distances at each station would be from here on.
It was originally planned at 7.5 miles but finished substantially over the estimate, which is mostly because of the extra bit at Westfield. The total for the day was 9.83 miles in 3 hours and 9 minutes, bringing the overall total to 209.02 miles.
Next time will be the top end of the Metropolitan line and I hope I get a lovely spring day for it, I hear it’s rather picturesque.
Lines: Piccadilly, Metropolitan, Circle, Hammersmith & City / Stations: South Kensington – Knightsbridge – Hyde Park Corner – Green Park – Piccadilly Circus – Leicester Square – Covent Garden – Holborn – Russell Square – King’s Cross St. Pancras – Farringdon – Barbican – Moorgate – Liverpool Street – Aldgate – Aldgate East / Time: 3h 09m / Distance: 8.84 miles
Today I finally finish off the Picc and move on to the Circle/Met/H&C in central London.
This is my second visit to South Kensington having passed during Day 3’s walk. I’m heading up to King’s Cross (via two disused stations) then back down to Farringdon and along to Aldgate East.
Brompton Road closed in 1934 but the Leslie Green surface building still stands. The station was used as the anti-aircraft command centre in World War 2 and is now expected to be turned into residential properties at some stage.
Down Street is a fairly famous disused station because it was Churchill’s war bunker.
There ends the Piccadilly line.
Mount Pleasant is home to the Postal Museum, and the access point to Mail Rail, an underground railway that ran from Paddington to Whitechapel for moving post around London.
Aldgate counts for the Circle and Metropolitan lines today, but I’m finishing one stop up at Aldgate East to tick off the corner of the Hammersmith & City line from Liverpool Street as well.
And with that, this end of the Circle/Met/H&C is done and so is my walk for the day. The distance was 8.84 miles in 3 hours and 9 minutes, and brings the total up to 199.19 miles.
Next time I’ll be passing the 200 mile point and the 200 stations point, as I walk from King’s Cross the other way heading for Hammersmith.
Lines: Piccadilly, Metropolitan / Stations: Ruislip Manor – Eastcote – Rayners Lane – South Harrow – Sudbury Hill – Sudbury Town – Alperton – Park Royal – North Ealing – Ealing Common / Time: 3h 15m / Distance: 10.02 miles
This time I’m finishing off the western section of the Piccadilly Line and also ticking off a small bit of the Met between Ruislip Manor and Rayners Lane.
The total distance today was 10.02 miles in 3 hours 15 minutes, bringing the total distance walked up to 190.35 miles. Next time I’ll finally finish the Piccadilly line, completing the section in zone 1 between South Kensington and King’s Cross, as well as a bit of the H&C/Circle/Met from King’s Cross onwards.
Heathrow Terminals 1,2,3 is the only station on the Underground that can’t be reached on foot, being in the middle of Heathrow airport. The only road access is through a tunnel which pedestrians aren’t allowed in, so this is the only section of these walks when I’m allowing myself to use the train.
The first part of the day’s adventure ends there, the train part doesn’t count towards the total so it ends as 5.23 miles in 1 hour 30 minutes. I still had some time left of the day and anything to minimise having to go all the way to the other side of London is helpful, so I jumped on a bus to Uxbridge and kept going…