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More Preserved Underground Stock
The London Transport Museum and the LU Heritage Fleet
The largest collection of preserved underground stock belongs to the London Transport Museum. In the 1970s a small collection of buses, trams and rail vehicles from London were placed on display at Syon Park in West London. In 1980 these were transferred to a brand new museum at Covent Garden. Shortage of space prevented more large exhibits being placed on display. More items were added to the collection, as they were withdrawn from service and stored at various depots and bus garages. Increased funding in the late 1990s permitted the development of a second site to house the reserve collection. This location is known as 'the Depot'.
Steam Locomotives and Passenger Carriages
Steam provided the first motive power on the underground and a handful of locomotives survive.
Metropolitan Railway 'A' Class No 23
The 'A' class were built by Beyer Peacock and hauled the first trains on the underground during the 1860s. No 23 was built in 1866 and renumbered L45 survived in the service fleet until 1948. It took part in the centenary parade in 1863 and has since been on museum display.
Metropolitan Railway 'E' Class No 1
No 1 was built by the Metropolitan Railway at Neasden in 1898. It later operated in the service fleet as L45. It has been preserved at the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre.
Metropolitan Railway "Bogie Stock" carriages
Four carriages were built for steam haulage, as follows:
No.368 Composite (built by Ashbury, Manchester, in 1898)
No.387 Brake 3rd (built by Ashbury, Manchester, in 1898)
No.394 Full 3rd (built by Ashbury, Manchester, in 1900)
No.412 Composite (built by Cravens, Sheffield, in 1900)
Each of these coaches was converted to electric multiple unit operation at various dates between 1906 and 1921. They reverted to steam haulage in 1940, and were used on the Chesham Branch. The carriages were then purchased by the Bluebell Railway in 1961 but returned to the Metropolitan for Centenary celebrations in 1963. They were used for less than a decade before major repairs were found to be required. Restoration started in 1991, with all the work undertaken by volunteers, together with the fund-raising to pay for the materials. The first two carriages returned to service in February 1999, the third in May 2002, with the fourth heading for completion in 2006. The two completed coaches were displayed at Rickmansworth during the "Steam on the Met" event in May 2000.
Visit the Bluebell Railway
Electric and Battery Locomotives
No 5 John Hampden and 12 Sarah Siddons
Built in 1922 for passenger work on the Metropolitan railway, No 5 and No 12 were members of a class of 20 locomotives. They were employed hauling passenger trains from Baker Street to Rickmansworth, where steam locomotives would take over for the journey on to Aylesbury. Most were withdrawn in the 1960s when the A Stock was introduced and electrification of the line to Amersham. 5 and 12 survived in the service fleet. No 5 was used as depot shunter at Ealing Common until withdrawn when. It was placed on display at Syon Park. It was moved to the Covent Garden Museum in 1980.
No 12 remained in the service fleet but in 1982 was used for a series of railtours between Harrow and Uxbridge/Watford/Amersham. Since then No 12 has been exhibited at many open days even travelling onto the National Rail Network. No 12 became part of the 'Heritage Fleet' and has been used to provide air-braking at the popular 'Steam on the Met' events. It is normally stabled at Ruislip depot.
First of a fleet of battery locos purpose built for engineering trains. Locomotives of the same design remain in use today. L35 was withdrawn in 1992 and is now at the Depot, Acton.
The extensions to the existing tube lines planned in the 1935 New Works Programme would significantly increase the open air mileage of the network. The problem of ice and snow on the conductor rail was important. Therefore in 1940 18 'sleet' locomotives were introduced, formed from the driving ends of Central London Railway cars. With the fitting of de-icing equipment to passenger stock the locomotives were no longer required. ESL107 is now preserved by LT Museum at the Depot, Acton
Electric Units - Tube Stock
Though known as "Standard Stock" this fleet of over 1,400 cars were built by several manufacturers and featured many detailed differences. Built between 1923 and 1934 trains of this type operated on all four of the original tube lines - the Bakerloo, Central, Northern and Piccadilly, from the 1920s to the 1960s.
Initially only one car was preserved - 3327 was placed on display in the Science Museum. It is now to be found in the LT Museum collection at Acton. A number of cars entered the service fleet as pilot motors and personnel carriers. However 43 cars were to receive an unexpected and unusual new lease of life and one that would see them become the oldest trains in passenger service in the UK.
During the 1960s British Railways addressed the modernisation and rationalisation of the network. One part of the system presented particular problems - on the Isle of Wight a fleet of carriages built in the pre-grouping era was still in service. Loading gauge restrictions limited the options for replacement while parts of the network still carried extensive summer holiday traffic.
The decision was eventually taken to close most of the lines keeping and electrifying only the busiest section from Ryde Pierhead to Shanklin and use second hand tube stock from London Transport. In the winter of 1966-7 43 cars of Standard began a new life on the Island.
They remained in service in until 1989 when they were replaced by 1938 Stock. The full story of the Underground stock on the Isle of Wight can be followed in a excellent new book by Capital Transport.
In 1990 the few cars not scrapped were returned to London for future use by the LT Museum. They joined the handful of standard stock cars that had survived in the service stock fleet. To recreate a standard stock train pilot motors L131(3693), L134(3370) and IOW cars 27(5279) and 49(7296) are in the 'Depot' at Acton. Other cars are stored on the Acton works site, IOW cars 2(3706), 7(3209),44(7281) Pilot Motors L130(3690), L135(3701) and Personnel carriers PC850(7061), PC851(7063), PC855(7017). The condition of the cars stored at Acton Works is poor and as the land is required for other purposes the future for these vehicles appears bleak.
During the 1930s London Transport looked at the design of future rolling stock. The result was a prototype train that became known as the 1935 Stock. For the first time all equipment was accommodated below floor level allowing more passenger capacity. Trains of a similar design were delivered from 1938 and entered service on the Northern and Bakerloo lines.
During the 1970s the introduction of the '73 Stock to the Piccadilly line allowed that line's '59 Stock to move to the Northern Line and the first withdrawals of '38 Stock took place. The units in better condition were selected for what was termed an 'Extra Heavy Overhaul' and trains continued to operate on the Bakerloo line until 1984.
Five trains were returned to service on the Northern line in 1986 when passenger levels began to increase. The very last train ran in 1988. Other cars were sold to British Rail for further service on the Isle of Wight. They remain in service there today.
DM 11182 was one of the cars withdrawn from the Northern line in the late 1970s and has been displayed in the Covent Garden museum since 1980
Four car unit 10012 + 012256 + 12048 + 11012 the "Starlight Express" was one of the last in service on the Bakerloo line in 1984 and it was at this time that it acquired the "Starlight Express" nickname having been used to promote the musical of the same name. Following the brief return to service in the late 1980s and the appearance at Morden open day in 1990 it spent the 1990s stored at Morden and Cockfosters depots. During this period LT Museum investigated ways of providing public access to its growing collection. Eventually lottery funding was secured and the unit was thoroughly overhauled and beautifully restored to 1960s condition by TMU at Acton.
It was placed on display at the 'Depot'. In 2003 a CTC was granted and the unit returned to passenger service. Several special trains were operated in 2003 and 2004 including the Uxbridge centenary specials, 2007 saw a visit to the Northern Line marking the centenary of the Charing Cross, Euston & Hampstead Railway, trips to the disused Jubilee line platforms at Charing Cross and a special to mark the closure of the East London Line. Photographs of the "Starlight Express" can also be found on District Dave's Website
The 1959 Stock entered service on the Piccadilly line but was transferred to the Northern Line in the mid 1970s. The last trains of '59 Stock were withdrawn early in 2000. A complete train was not preserved but individual cars from the 'Mars Bar' have survived.
In 1990 one 7-car train was repainted into a 1920s style red and cream livery as part of the City & South London Railway centenary celebrations and because of this livery became known as the 'Mars Bar'. The interiors were repainted in cerulean blue like the 1938 stock. Unfortunately it was not possible to preserve the complete unit Stock but five of the seven cars from the have survived.
DMs 1044 and 1045 have been preserved at the Alderney Railway, in the Channel Islands. A picture of the cars in their new home can be found here on the Subterranea Britannica website. DM 1030 and Trailer 2044 can be found at Mangapps Farm railway museum, Burnham-on-Crouch, Essex along. DM 1031 is at Morden Depot where it is used as office space. The other cars, DM 1032 and NDM 9045 were scrapped
Victoria Line car 3016 is at Low Hall Transport Museum, Walthamstow. It is the only 1967 Stock car in original condition. The 1967 fleet was augmented by surplus cars of 1972mkI Stock during the refurbishment programme - some units were re-formed. 3016 had been damaged in a collision and replaced by 3116 which was re-numbered. The museum plans to restore 3016 to display an exhibition on the Victoria Line.
Electric Units - Surface Stock
Two cars of Metropolitan Railway T Stock 2758 and 2749 are preserved at the Spa Valley Railway Tunbridge Wells, Kent. These entered the service stock fleet as sleet vehicles numbered as ESL118A/B. They were latter used in leaf clearing experiments on the outer sections of the Metropolitan Line which also involved No 12 Sarah Siddons. They often operated with flat wagon carrying a water tank. One car has been restored and used in passenger service, work continues on the other.
Q Stock Several Q Stock cars are now preserved at the 'Depot'. DM 4248 was built by Gloucester in 1923 as District G class motor coach. 4184 was displayed outside the Gloucester company's workshops until closure when it returned to London. Q38 driving motors 4416 and 4417 survived as pilot motors L126 and L127 from 1972.
Stock Several cars of former District Line stock are preserved. DMs 54233 and 53028 and trailer 013063 are preserved at Quainton. DM 54256 is being restored at Low Hall Transport Museum, Walthamstow.
Two R Stock driving motors (22624, 21147) are preserved at Mangapps Farm, Essex. DM 22679 is at the 'Depot', Acton.
Places to Visit
Low Hall Steam & Transport Museum
Low Hall Museum commemorates the industrial and transport history of Walthamstow and the Lea Valley. The museum is centred on a Victorian pumping station and one of the remaining engines is in operation, apart from the two cars of London Underground stock, other exhibits include fire engines, buses and displays on local history and transport.
Low Hall was a farm until 1877 when the site was purchased by Walthamstow UDC for the building of a sewage works. The Pump House dates from 1885. Steam engines built by Messrs. Marshall & Sons were installed in 1897. The steam engines were used to pump effluent to the filtration and settlement tanks. In 1905 a refuse incinerator was built. Farming continued on some of the site until the 1930s when it became extensively as a council depot. Electric power was introduced in the 1960s making the boilers and engines redundant. Fortunately the engines were not removed and the Pump House was used as a store.
Low Hall Museum is in South Access Road, Markhouse Avenue and within walking distance of Walthamstow James Street Station. The museum is open on Sundays from 11am-3pm. Admission adults £1, children 50p.
The London Transport Museum
The main museum in Covent Garden is closed for refurbisbment this year. However he reserve collection at Acton is has open weekends during the year and is also open to groups by appointment.
Buckinghamshire Railway Museum
Located at Quainton Road in rural Buckinghamshire, just north of Aylesbury the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre is one of our long established preservation centres and one with strong connections to London's Underground. Quainton Road was on the joint Great Central/Metropolitan route and junction for the unique Brill Tramway. A large site with a vast collection of locomotives it is home to Metropolitan Railway No 1 (L44) the only Metropolitan Railway steam engine to have survived in working order. Three cars of C/CO/CP stock are also displayed
The Bluebell Railway
The Bluebell Railway, in Sussex, preserves the atmosphere, steam locomotives, rolling stock, and infrastructure of the steam age of the Southern Railway and its constituents, with steam trains operating with vintage coaches every weekend throughout the year, daily during the summer and during other school holiday periods. It is also home to four Metropolitan Railway coaches dating from 1898 and 1900, including one built by Cravens, which are in regular service following a comprehensive overhaul.
Mangapps Farm Railway Museum Burnham-on-Crouch, Essex
Mangapps Farm railway museum was built entirely from scratch, a brilliant re-creation of the rural light railway. It has a varied collection of rolling stock including cars of '59 Stock and R Stock. The rural station buildings recovered from locations in East Anglia also make a visit worth while.
Spa Valley Railway
The Spa Valley Railway is one of our younger preserved railways, the line between Tunbridge Wells West and Eridge only closed in 1985. Although the large station building at Tunbridge Wells is now a pub and restaurant the railway has use of the large four-road engine and is home to a small but growing collection of steam and diesel locomotives.
Brunel Engine House Museum, Rotherhithe
Marc Brunel's tunnel at Wapping was the worlds first underwater tunnel. The tunnel became part of the East London Line and is still in use today. This museum tells the story of an important part of our engineering heritage.
Our three-car unit of 1960 Stock operated on the Central Line until
withdrawl in 1994. Since 1995 we have operated regular railtours on the Underground
Aldwych Branch Photos...
High Barnet Shuttles...
East London Explorer..
Our second train also operated on the Central Line for 30 years and is now being restored at Hainault depot. More...
Epping Signal Cabin
Epping Signal Cabin became redundant in 1996 when re-signalling of the Central Line was completed. Since 2001 CHTL has leased the Signal Cabin - we hope to restore the frame and open a small museum. More...
L11 is a unique locomotive built for shunting at Acton works. More...
The eastern branches of the Central Line started life as part of the Eastern Counties Railway More...
Central Line Track Replacement
Wood Lane 2003
Isle of Wight 2003
More railway and underground websites...
The Holden F5 Trust
Re-building a lost steam locomotive... More...
Low Hall Steam and Transport Museum in Walthamstow commemortates the industrial heritage of the Lee Valley. For more information visit the Pump House