Piccadilly Line



(1907 - 1932)

 An unusual case of a central London station being closed completely without replacement of some sort: Down Street was built in a well-to-do area (such that local inhabitants were unlikely to use the underground), was too close to the stations either side of it (Hyde Park Corner and Dover St), and was in a generally low catchment area anyway.

Its neighbouring stations received new entrances closer to Down Street when they were rebuilt for escalator installation thus allowing for Down Street to be closed. As with Brompton Road, its patronage was so light that not all trains had been stopping there. The closure of the two stations allowed journey times on the Piccadilly Line to be reduced.

The platforms at Down Street were bricked up during World War II, so there is only a fleeting glimpse to be had from passing trains.


1) Hyde Park Corner station
2) Down Street station
3) Dover Street station (now Green Park)

This map dates from the 1930s - both Hyde Park Corner and Green Park station now have entrances closer to the location of Down Street.




The surface remains of the eponymous Down Street. The black door on the left presumably leads to the upper level. The door to its right is the alarmed LUL entrance. The mini-mart is built in part of the original station building space (i.e. it was not part of the original structure, as this picture from the LT archive shows).

The underground passages were converted to office use during the war for the Railway Executive Committee and for the War Cabinet. Indeed, Winston Churchill himself used the station as his secure deep level site until his cabinet war rooms were built.

(photo: 2001)




A small corridor leading from the front entrance to the large intake fans, installed over the lift shaft.




Steps leading down from the surface level to the emergency stairs.




Evidence of the station's war time use.




The emergency stairs with some remarkably intact original tiling. The stairs themselves are more recent.




Near the bottom of the emergency stairs is a passageway that branches off to provide an alternative escape route. The passage was compartmentalised for World War II use to provide bathroom facilities.




The passages at Down Street are very wide: reputedly built in error to running tunnel width instead of normal passageway width. That at least gave the opportunity to convert them into decent living quarters.




The bottom of the emergency stairs. The door on the right hand side of the photo is the 'torpedo' lift shaft built for Churchill's use.




The raised section was where the typing pool was located during World War II. People passing through used the small walkway on the right and legend has it that it was built wide enough to allow a tea-trolley to fit through.




Passageway over the running tunnel. The steps down to platform level are behind and to the left of the camera.




Alternative view of the passageway above.

Photo by Gary. ©2011


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(All photos on the page: 2009 unless stated otherwise)



Down Street pt.2 (Piccadilly Line)