The London Transport Museum is planning a year-long celebration of events to mark next year’s 150th anniversary of the Tube – the world’s oldest underground railway.
Sponsored by Cubic Transportation Systems, Siemens and CBS Outdoor, the planned celebrations include exhibitions, theatrical events at the disused Aldwych Underground station as well as a new range of anniversary gifts from the museum’s shop.
Programme of events:
Steam runs of the Metropolitan Steam Locomotive No. 1 and Met Railway Jubilee Carriage No. 353
The very first underground railway journey took place on 9 January 1863 through the new tunnels of the Metropolitan line between Paddington and Farringdon, which are now part of the Circle & Hammersmith Line. The opening of the railway took place only 26 years after Queen Victoria came to the throne and was considered a great novelty – ‘the most stupendous engineering undertaking yet achieved in the railway world’.
The journey will be recreated on Sunday 13 and 20 January 2013 when a series of special trains will be hauled by the newly restored Met Steam Locomotive No. 1 along part of the original route. No 1 was the last locomotive to be built at Neasden in 1898 by the Metropolitan Railway.
It will pull the Metropolitan Railway Jubilee Carriage No 353 – the oldest operational underground carriage in existence – which has also recently been restored with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, as well as the Chesham Shuttle Coaches from the Bluebell Railway. Ex Metropolitan Railway electric Locomotive No. 12 Sarah Siddons will also be part of the train.
No. 1 will also run throughout the year across the Metropolitan line network on special occasions, and in August it will be steaming during an extensive programme of activities at the Buckinghamshire Railway Centre and at other locations.
The Museum is currently fundraising for Met Loco No. 1 and needs to raise £250,000 to cover the costs of the restoration and operation.
All those making a donation towards the restoration of Met Loco No. 1 will have the chance to win a pair of tickets to travel on a special journey on 13 January 2013, recreating the inaugural passenger train journey made on the world’s first underground railway in 1863.
To make a donation or for more information please visit http://www.ltmuseum.co.uk/met1. Or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Exhibition: Poster Art 150 – London Underground’s Greatest Designs
Opens 15 February 2013
Since its first graphic poster commission in 1908, London Underground has developed a worldwide reputation for commissioning outstanding poster designs, becoming a pioneering patron of poster art – a legacy that continues today. Poster Art 150, which is supported by Siemens, will showcase 150 of the best designs which have been chosen by an independent panel.
Visitors will be invited to vote for their favourites and the most popular poster will be revealed at the end of the exhibition. Well-known posters, including the surrealist photographer Man Ray’s ‘Keeps London Going’ pair, will feature alongside lesser-known gems. The exhibition will also offer a rare chance to view letter-press posters from the late nineteenth century.
Behind the Scenes events and Open Weekends at the Museum’s store at Acton
April and October 2013
The Museum’s Depot at Acton will open its doors for special Behind the Scenes events in April and October 2013. Themed days will include photography, art and design, creative writing and ‘Driver’s seat days’.
There will also be a chance to learn more about the restoration of the Met Loco No. 1 and Met Railway Carriage No 353 – both of which will be on display. During the Acton Open Weekends, the Met Loco No. 1 will be in light steam.
Theatrical events at the disused Aldwych Underground station
The 150 years of London’s underground railway history will be highlighted through theatrical performances based in the disused Aldwych Underground station.
Official book: Underground – How the Tube Shaped London
Penguin Books have published a new official history, Underground – How the Tube shaped London, written by London Transport Museum’s Director – Sam Mullins and former curators Oliver Green and David Bownes.
Poster Art 150 – London Underground’s Greatest Designs will take place at London Transport Museum, Covent Garden Piazza, London, WC2E 7BB. Admission to the exhibition will be included in the entry ticket to the main Museum galleries which will be £15.00 (£13.50 for adult concessions) which allows free entry to all the Museum galleries for a whole year. Under 16s go free.
For further information visit www.ltmuseum.co.uk or call 020 7565 7298.