Bakerloo line

The Bakerloo line runs between Harrow & Wealdstone in suburban north-west London and Elephant & Castle in south London.

Coloured brown on the Tube map, it serves 25 stations, 15 of which are below ground, over 23.2 km. It runs partly on the surface and partly in deep level tube tunnels.

The line was so named because it goes via Baker Street and Waterloo. North of Queen’s Park (the section above ground), the line shares tracks with the London Overground Watford DC Line and runs parallel to the West Coast Main Line.

Opened between 1906 and 1915, many of its stations retain elements of their design to a common standard, the stations below ground using Art Nouveau decorative tiling by Leslie Green and the above-ground stations built in red brick with stone detailing in an Arts & Crafts style.

Bakerloo Line stations – listed north to south

Click on the station names in capital letters to view the individual station blog pages.


Since the 1980s, Harrow and Wealdstone has been the northern terminus of the Bakerloo line.

The station was opened by the London and Birmingham Railway as ’Harrow’ on 20 July 1837. At the time the station was built, the area was rural and the nearest large settlement was at Harrow on the Hill about one and a half miles to the south.

Wealdstone was then a collection of houses at the north end of what is now Wealdstone High Street, about one mile north of the station.

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Kenton hamlet was first recorded as ’Keninton’ in 1232 with the name deriving from the personal name of the Saxon ’Coena’ and the Old English ’tun’ (a farm).

Before the 20th century, the settlement was concentrated around in what was Kenton Lane (the easternmost part of which remains as Old Kenton Lane).

Kenton station was opened by the London and North Western Railway on 15 June 1912. Kenton’s centre moved towards the Wealdstone direction after the opening of Kenton station – Kenton had grown into a suburb by the 1920s.

Thomas Francis Nash owned building companies built numerous private housing estates in Kenton. F & C Costin was another local building company that built much of Kenton between the wars. Local estate agents still use the term ’Nash-built’ or ’Costin-built’ to describe properties built by them in Kenton. Also active in building was the London County Council which built the Kenmore Park cottage estate between the wars.

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South Kenton is situated on the southern fringe of Northwick Park in an area which was previously open farmland with virtually no settlement.

Its station opened on 3 July 1933 with access from both sides of the railway via a footbridge to the single island platform serving. The further growth of South Kenton was stimulated by the arrival of the railway.

South Kenton’s station footbridge was later replaced by a pedestrian tunnel, cutting out a long climb for passengers entering the station. The station was designed by the architect William Henry Hamlyn and built in concrete and glass.

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North Wembley is an area of the London Borough of Brent and the location of the Sudbury Court Estate.

North Wembley station was first opened by the London and North Western Railway on 15 June 1912 as part of the ‘New Line’ between Euston and Watford Junction. Bakerloo line services began on 16 April 1917.

Originally to be called East Lane, after the road passing over the railway at this location, it was named North Wembley instead. North Wembley station was built to the same general design as the other new stations on the same line and the layout at North Wembley station makes it almost identical to Kenton two stops to the north.

Sudbury Court Estate was built between circa 1927 to 1935, one of the best surviving mock tudor housing locally. The estate was built by Captain Edward George Spencer-Churchill who also built the Northwick Park estate further north.

Along East Lane in North Wembley is a small range of shops.

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Wembley Central is an interchange station on the West Coast Main Line with the London Overground and the London Underground.

The through line opened on 20 July 1837 but then Wembley Central just couldn’t settle on a name. The station opened as ’Sudbury’ in 1842 before becoming ’Sudbury & Wembley’ in 1882 and ’Wembley for Sudbury’ in 1910.

On 16 April 1917, the Bakerloo line service commenced and on 5 July 1948 the station was renamed ’Wembley Central’. And it’s been that name ever since.

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From 24 September 1982 to 4 June 1984, Stonebridge Park was the northern operational terminus of the Bakerloo line.

Those glory days of Stonebridge Park terminus status were due to the location of the depot here. This was built on land next to the station which was opened by the London and North Western Railway as part of their “New Line” project on 15 June 1912. It closed on 9 January 1917 and reopened for Bakerloo line trains on 1 August 1917.

Breaking piece of trivia: Stonebridge Park was not the name for this area before the arrival of the railway.

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Harlesden proclaims itself “the reggae capital of London”

In the 19th century, Harlesden, then a rural village, began to develop some of its urban appearance with the arrival of the railways. Cottages for railway and industrial workers were built, as was grander housing for the local middle class. To the east of Harlesden, there were still several farms, Elmwood, Haycroft, Upper Roundwood, and Sellon’s until the late 1890s.

Harlesden was at the height of its prosperity at the turn of the 20th century.  Nine churches and chapels were built between 1876 and 1902 as were a court house, a library, a constitutional clubhouse, and a jubilee clock, the focus of High Street. Willesden Hippodrome, a large music hall, opened in 1907. Much of High Street, a major shopping centre, was rebuilt in the Edwardian period.

Mainly after World War I, one of Europe’s biggest industrial estates was constructed at nearby Park Royal, and large factories there included McVitie & Price (later United Biscuits) from 1910, and Heinz from 1919.

The image of Harlesden today began to take shape in the 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. Continued immigration from Ireland and new immigration from the Caribbean, the Indian sub-continent and Africa changed the cultural make up of the area. More recently the area has now become home to Brazilian and Portuguese communities. Much of the housing is made up of Victorian terraces which have been attracting young professionals unable to afford similar properties in nearby Kensal Green and Queen’s Park.

Harlesden station opened in 1841 by the London and Birmingham Railway and closed in 1866, replaced by Willesden Junction station, half a mile to the south-east. A new station called Harlesden , opened on 15 June 1912. Bakerloo line services on the same tracks began in 1917.

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Willesden Junction is a major interchange station of the London Overground linking to the Bakerloo Line.

The West Coast Main Line station was opened by the London & North Western Railway on 1 September 1866 to replace the London and Birmingham Railway’s Willesden station of 1841 which was half a mile to the northwest. The High-Level station was opened by the North London Railway in 1869. 

In 1896 staff totalled 271, including 79 porters, 58 signalmen (in 14 signal boxes) and 58 shunters and yard foremen. They issued 1,006,886 tickets to passengers in 1896. 

The ’Willesden New Station’ was opened in 1910 to the north of the main line. The bay platforms were originally long enough for four-coach Bakerloo trains when such trains ran outside peak times, but were shortened in the 1960s.

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Kensal Green, site of England’s oldest cemetery still in use.

Kensal Green cemetery still contains many elaborate Victorian mausoleums, including those of William Makepeace Thackeray and Anthony Trollope.

Kensal Green is also a residential area with good transport links to central London. The names Kensal Green and Kensal Rise are used somewhat interchangeably by non-residents to denote the same district, although residents differentiate between the areas based on proximity to the local tube and railway stations.

Kensal Green is first mentioned in 1253, translating from old English meaning the King’s Holt (King’s Wood) and the station opened on 1 October 1916.

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Queen’s Park, like much of Kilburn, was developed by a man called Solomon Barnett.

Queen’s Park station was first opened by the London and North Western Railway on 2 June 1879 on the main line from London to Birmingham.

The two-storey terraced houses east of the park, built between 1895 and 1900, typically have clean, classical lines. Those west of the park, built 1900–05, tend to be more Gothic in style. Barnett’s wife was from the West Country, and many of the roads he developed are named either for places she knew (e.g. Torbay, Tiverton, Honiton) or for popular poets of the time (e.g. Tennyson). The first occupants of the area in late Victorian times were typically lower middle class, such as clerks and teachers. Queen’s Park is both demographically and architecturally diverse. The streets around the park at the heart of Queen’s Park are a conservation area.

Services on the Bakerloo line were extended from Kilburn Park to Queen’s Park on 11 February 1915. On 10 May 1915 Bakerloo services began to operate north of Queen’s Park as far as Willesden Junction over recently-built tracks.

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The area of Kilburn Park was developed in the 1850s somewhat south of the area then known as Kilburn in the Fields, west of the Edgware Road.

The ‘Park’ in the name was simply an invention by the developer, James Bailey. Bailey had teamed up in a consortium of five developers who in 1850 bought 47 acres from owner the Reverend Edward Stuart. The consortium laid out roads and sewers and divided the site among themselves, subletting to smaller firms who built a few houses each.

The isolated, muddy location failed to attract many buyers and the estate remained incomplete for several decades. Properties were soon subdivided, some containing as many as six households in the 1870s.

The suburb of Kilburn Park was finally complete in the late 1880s.

Kilburn Park station was opened on 31 January 1915 as the temporary terminus of the Bakerloo line’s extension from Paddington towards Queen’s Park.

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Maida Vale took its name from a public house named after John Stuart, Count of Maida who won the Battle of Maida in 1806.

The Maida Vale area was developed by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in the early 19th century as middle class housing with the layouts followed on from the building of the Regent’s Canal between 1812 and 1820. From the 1860s onwards, red brick was used as the prevailing look of local housing which is still the look today. The first mansion blocks were completed in 1897.

Maida Vale tube station was opened on 6 June 1915, on the Bakerloo Line.

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Warwick Avenue is an area, street and a Bakerloo Line tube station hiding out of sight near the canal.

The area of which Warwick Avenue is part – Little Venice – is one of London’s prime residential areas, known for its shops and restaurants. Built around the Grand Union Canal, the atmosphere is more Dutch than Venetian.

Warwick Avenue tube station opened on 31 January 1915 on the Bakerloo line’s extension from Paddington to Queen’s Park. For a time prior to its opening, the proposed name for the station was Warrington Crescent. There are no surface buildings and the station is accessed by two sets of steps to a sub-surface ticket hall. It was one of the first London Underground stations built specifically to use escalators rather than lifts.

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Paddington was the location of the departure of the very first underground train in January 1863.

Paddington main line station was designed by the celebrated engineer, Isambard Kingdom Brunel and had long been the London end of the Great Western Railway.

Paddington, being far from central London in the 1860s, became the choice for the first underground railway in the world so the GWR passengers could reach the City. Before the coming of the railway, Paddington had been a medieval parish. Later it became a metropolitan borough and finally integrated with Westminster and Greater London in 1965. Paddington is the site of St Mary’s Hospital where penicillin was first discovered.

Alan Turing, the pioneer mathematician was born in Warrington Crescent.

Fictionally, Paddington Station has a display case showing Paddington Bear, a character of children’s fiction who, in the book, is first discovered at this station and hence named after it.

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Edgware Road – so good they built it twice.

The main Edgware Road station serves the Circle, District and Hammersmith & City lines.

A second Edgware Road station was opened on 15 June 1907 by the Baker Street and Waterloo Railway (now the Bakerloo line) when it extended its line from the temporary northern terminus at Marylebone. In common with other early stations of the lines owned by the Underground Electric Railways Company of London, that station was designed by architect Leslie Green with an ox-blood red glazed terracotta façade.

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Marylebone is an area in the City of Westminster North of Oxford Street and South of Regents Park. 

Marylebone gets its name from a church, called St Mary’s, that was built on the bank of a small stream or ‘bourne’ called the Tyburn. The church and the surrounding area later became known as ‘St Mary at the bourne’, which over time became shortened to its present form Marylebone.

Today the area is mostly residential with a stylish High Street.

Marylebone station, opened in 1899, is the youngest of London’s mainline terminal stations, and also one of the smallest, having opened with half the number of platforms originally planned.

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Baker Street – Sherlock’s stomping ground.

Baker Street is one of the original stations of the Metropolitan Railway – the world’s first underground railway, opened in 1863.

The Baker Street & Waterloo Railway (now the Bakerloo line) opened on 10 March 1906; Baker Street was the temporary northern terminus of the line until it was extended to Marylebone station on 27 March 1907.

On 20 November 1939, following the construction of an additional southbound platform and connecting tube tunnels between Baker Street and Finchley Road stations, the Bakerloo line took over the Metropolitan line’s stopping services between Finchley Road and Wembley Park and its Stanmore branch.

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Regent’s Park is one of the few underground stations without its own building.

The station was opened on 10 March 1906 by the Baker Street & Waterloo Railway. In the original parliamentary authority for the construction of the BS&WR no station was allowed at Regent’s Park. Permission was granted to add it to the already partially constructed line in 1904 but without a surface building.

The station is served by lifts – there is also a staircase which can be used and which has 96 steps.

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Oxford Circus was designed by John Nash in 1811.

Oxford Circus, the busy intersection of Oxford Street and Regent Street, was constructed in the beginning of the 19th century, and was designed by John Nash. Regent Street had been commissioned by Prince Regent, who was later to become King George IV, as a grand scheme to connect the Princes home at Carlton House with his newly acquired property at Regents Park. Nash designed a wide boulevard with a sweeping curve that became a clear dividing line between the less respectable Soho and the fashionable squares and streets of Mayfair. Born from the concept of Nash’s layout of the New Street in 1812, frontage alignments remain, with the rebuilt listed architecture of 1920s buildings.

The surrounding area contains important elements of the Nash heritage. All frontages on the Circus are Grade II Listed. 

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Piccadilly Circus was built in 1819 to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly.

The junction has always been a very busy traffic interchange since construction, as it lies at the centre of Theatreland and handles exit traffic from Piccadilly, which Charles Dickens, Jr. described in 1879: “Piccadilly, the great thoroughfare leading from the Haymarket and Regent-street westward to Hyde Park-corner, is the nearest approach to the Parisian boulevard of which London can boast.” The circus lost its circular form in 1886 with the construction of Shaftesbury Avenue.

Piccadilly Circus tube station was opened 10 March 1906, on the Bakerloo Line, and on the Piccadilly Line in December of that year. In 1928, the station was extensively rebuilt to handle an increase in traffic.

The intersection’s first electric advertisements appeared in 1910.

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Since the 18th century, Charing Cross has been seen as the exact centre of London.

Charing Cross gives its name to several local landmarks, including Charing Cross railway station and is named after the now demolished Eleanor cross that stood there, in what was once the hamlet of Charing. It was where King Edward I placed a memorial to his wife, Eleanor of Castile.

It was one of twelve places where Eleanor’s coffin rested overnight during the funeral procession from Lincolnshire to her final resting-place at Westminster. At each of these, Edward erected an Eleanor cross, of which only three now remain.

The original site of the cross has been occupied since 1675 by an equestrian statue of King Charles I. A Victorian replacement, in different style from the original, was later erected a short distance to the east outside the railway station.

Until 1931, Charing Cross also referred to the part of what is now Whitehall lying between Great Scotland Yard and Trafalgar Square.

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Embankment underground station has been known by various names during its long history.

The station has two entrances, one on Victoria Embankment and the other on Villiers Street, adjacent to Victoria Embankment Gardens.

The station is in two parts: sub-surface platforms opened in 1870 by the Metropolitan District Railway as part of the company’s extension of the Inner Circle eastwards from Westminster to Blackfriars and deep-level platforms opened in 1906 by the Baker Street and Waterloo Railway and 1914 by the Charing Cross, Euston and Hampstead Railway.

After having been named both Charing Cross and Embankment, in 1974 the station was renamed Charing Cross Embankment. Then, on 12 September 1976, it became Embankment, so that the merged Strand and Trafalgar Square stations could be named Charing Cross.

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London Waterloo station is a central London railway terminus and London Underground complex.

The London and South Western Railway opened the station on 11 July 1848 as ’Waterloo Bridge Station’ when its main line was extended from Nine Elms. The station, designed by William Tite, was raised above marshy ground on a series of arches. The unfulfilled intention was for a through station with services to the City. In 1886, it officially became Waterloo Station.

Waterloo tube station is, like its namesake, the busiest station on the network and is served by the Bakerloo, Jubilee, Northern and the Waterloo & City lines.

The first underground station at Waterloo was opened on 8 August 1898 by the Waterloo & City Railway.

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Lambeth North is the area surrounding the Imperial War Museum.

Since the 19th century North Lambeth has been one of the names to describe the area around Waterloo station and the shopping district around Lower Marsh market, which was the heart of the original Lambeth village. This area contains many business premises and nationally important locations such as St Thomas’ Hospital, the London Eye, the Royal National Theatre, the Royal Festival Hall, County Hall, Lambeth Palace, and the Imperial War Museum.

Lambeth North tube station serves the area. Designed by Leslie Green, the station was opened by the Baker Street & Waterloo Railway on 10 March 1906, with the name Kennington Road. It served as the temporary southern terminus of the line until 5 August 1906, when Elephant & Castle station was opened. The station’s name was changed to Westminster Bridge Road in July 1906 and it was again renamed, to Lambeth North, in April 1917.

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Elephant and Castle is one of five London tube stations named after a pub.

One thing Elephant and Castle is not named after is ‘La Infanta de Castilla’, seemingly referring to a series of Spanish princesses such as Eleanor of Castile and María, the daughter of Philip III of Spain. However, Eleanor of Castile was not an infanta – the term only appeared in English about 1600. María has a strong British connection because she was once controversially engaged to Charles I, but she had no connection with Castile. Infanta de Castilla therefore seems to be a conflation of two Iberian royals separated by 300 years.

Regardless, the pub of that name gave its name to the station, and in turn the station to the nearby area.

Elephant & Castle tube station is on the Bank branch of the Northern Line between Kennington and Borough, and is the southern terminus of the Bakerloo Line.

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Shopping-wise, if the mug you want is not shown, you will find it on the TUM store.


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