Celebrating 150 years of the London Underground

Wednesday the 9th of January marks 150 years since the first London Underground train made its maiden voyage. Many events have been planned for the month and the rest of the year to celebrate this monumental occasion.

On the 9th of January 1863, a little steam train travelled three-and-a-half miles from Paddington to Farringdon. The 2.5 hour journey ended at Farringdon Station where dignitaries enjoyed a banquet in honour of the event.

In the 150 years since, the London Underground has gradually been extended and improved and now boasts 10 lines, carrying more than a billion people each year. It is the largest, deepest, busiest, most loved and possibly even the most hated transport system in the world.

The “tube” has survived bombings, floods, stampedes, fires and seen its fair share of death, disaster and even the odd underground birth. Find out more about the colourful history of the London Underground at one of the many events planned for the year.

• The London Transport Museum on Covent Garden Piazza is open daily 10am-6pm except Friday (11am-6pm): adults £13.50, concessions £10, under 16s free.

• The re-run of first Underground service takes places on the 13th and 20th of January. Tickets are sold out despite the whopping £150 price tag.

• Enjoy talks by the authors of ‘Underground: How the Tube Shaped London’, on January 21, February 25 and March 25.

• From February to October, you can purchase special posters as part of ‘Poster Art 150’, a celebration of vintage London Underground advertising.

• In April and November, members of the public are invited behind the scenes at the London Transport Museum Depot in Acton, with various talks and workshops on offer.


  • Josh

    You say in this article: In the 150 years since, the London Underground has gradually been extended and improved and now boasts 10 lines, carrying more than a million people each year.

    It is more than a BILLION each year. Just thought you should know…