I had never noticed before the old Aldwych station entrance just off the Strand in London. On a sunny cold November day and after a lovely breakfast beside the river Thames we met the London Transport Museum guide outside a tatty red door and locked up station. I was excited as we went inside the station entrance and saw the old ticket office with the special green tiles from the 1920s. Aldwych station has been closed since 1994 as it was a single track branch line from Holborn that had declining passenger numbers over the last 20 years of its use. Everything was run down and left as it was from the moment it closed.
We walked down the spiral staircase and got very dusty as we descended. At the bottom the first thing we saw was the old lift shafts which still had the 1920s wooden lifts which had seats in them. This is really unusual and something you don't get now on the underground. When we got to the platform we could see the old posters on the wall from decades before. There was even a poster about joining the EU nearly 50 years ago!
On the other platform there was a train which we could get on and explore. We were shown a film about how the station had been used in the second world war as an air raid shelter. Hundreds of people slept down here. It was also used to transport art and precious pictures from the National Gallery. The train and the disused station are often used in films such as James Bond, Atonement and recently the Oscar winning film The Darkest Hour. I watched this film afterwards to see the scene where Churchill got on the tube.
I thought this was a great trip. I learnt lots about the history of the Underground and London. I would recommend this exciting tour to others