Wood Lane (Central Line) tube station

Infobox Closed London station | name=Wood Lane|

tubestation=yes

Wood Lane tube station is a disused station on the Central Line of the London Underground. It was built for the Franco-British Exhibition of 1908.

The location of the station was confined and its configuration was awkward, requiring alterations on a number of occasions to meet operational requirements.

A new station of this name is under construction and will be opening in 2008 [http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tfl/press-centre/press-releases/press-releases-content.asp?prID=941] .

Wood Lane depot, 1900

Prior to the 1908 exhibition, the western terminus of the Central London Railway (CLR) was at Shepherd's Bush. North of Shepherd's Bush station was located the CLR's power station and Wood Lane depot, coord|51|30|26|N|0|13|20.26|W|region:GB_type:railwaystation. Trains originally accessed the depot via a single, sharply curved tunnel from the station's westbound platform heading northwards under Caxton Street. Trains then exited the tunnel to the north of the depot and used a reversing siding to run into the depot in a southbound direction. Trains running from the depot reversed the process and entered the eastbound platform of Shepherd's Bush station via a junction to the west of the station.

Wood Lane station, 1908

When the exhibition was opened, a temporary station was constructed within the northern perimeter of the depot on the site of the reversing siding. A new tunnel was bored to connect directly to the end of the eastbound tunnel at Shepherd's Bush station forming a loop.

As constructed for the exhibition, Wood Lane station had just a single track with platforms on each side - one for unloading and one for loading. Trains entered the station anti-clockwise in a westbound direction from the tunnel under the depot and exited heading south back into tunnel in the direction of Shepherd's Bush station.

Following the success of the exhibition a number of other entertainment venues - notably White City Stadium - grew up in the area and the temporary station became a permanent fixture.

Wood Lane station, 1920

Central Line services began to operate to Ealing Broadway in August 1920 and the station was reconfigured to accommodate through-running from Ealing Broadway to the West End and the City.

A new sub-surface tunnel was constructed to the north of the existing loop platforms on which was located a new westbound platform for trains heading to Ealing Broadway. Another new sub-surface tunnel was constructed to the west (and below) the loop platforms providing an eastbound platform for trains arriving from Ealing Broadway. Trains terminating or starting at Wood Lane continued to use the loop platforms. The station thus had a triangular shape.

Closure, 1947

Due to its awkward arrangement and unsatisfactory operation Wood Lane station was closed in 1947 when a new replacement station (White City) was opened a short distance to the north. The Wood Lane platforms were abandoned.

Demolition, 2003

Until the station's demolition between 2003 and 2005 the old eastbound platform could be seen from passing trains heading from White City to Shepherd's Bush. The 1908 street level building was dismantled and moved to the London's Transport Museum depot at Acton for reconstruction.

The site of the station and the depot has been redeveloped for the new Westfield London shopping centre, and in summer of 2005, the curving ramps to the 1908 platforms and the platforms themselves, in the north-west corner of the site, disappeared. A new depot has been constructed completely below ground under the shopping centre.

Oddities

Until the late 1920s the CLR used cars that were accessed by gated entrances at the end of the cars. When new rolling stock was introduced with sliding pneumatic doors the loop platforms had to be extended to provide access to all doors but it was not possible to extend the platform on the inside of the loop (the south side) as it interfered with an access track to the depot. A pivoting section of platform was constructed that could be moved to allow access to the depot to be made when required.

Television

In "The Tomorrow People's" first serial, "Slaves of Jedikiah", the outdoor shots of the abandoned station where the Lab was in showed it to be Wood Lane. Also, the dockland scenes in the "Doctor Who" serial "The Dalek Invasion of Earth" were enacted there. [http://www.alphalink.com.au/~drednort/woodlane.html]

A 1987 edition of the South Bank Show about the London Underground was introduced by Melvyn Bragg who appeared out of the fog, carrying a torch on the platform of Wood Lane Station.

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ee also

*Wood Lane (Metropolitan Line) tube station - a separate closed station on the Hammersmith and City Line to the north of the Central Line station also opened for the 1908 exhibition.
*Shepherd's Bush stations

External links

* [http://www.abandonedstations.org.uk/Wood_Lane_station_1.html London's Abandoned Tube Stations - Wood Lane]
* [http://photos.ltmcollection.org London's Transport Museum Photographic Archive]
** ltmcollection|36/9888836.jpg|Wood Lane station in 1927. The large bridge over the station building carried pedestrians to the White City exhibitions.
** ltmcollection|67/9888767.jpg|Ticket hall, 1927
** ltmcollection|4l/i000024l.jpg|Detail of entrance sign, 1998
* [http://underground-history.co.uk/woodlane.php Underground History - Wood Lane Station]
* [http://www.trainweb.org/tubeprune/Woodlane%20whitecity.htm Tube Professionals' Rumour Network - Wood Lane Deport and Station]
* [http://www.la21.org.uk/whitecity/woodlane.html White City Development - Wood Lane Station]


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