diamond geezer

 Monday, November 11, 2013

JUBILEE: 5 things I found outside this station
I've devoted a month to the Jubilee line before. It was May 2004, the line's 25th anniversary, when I ran a station-by-station feature entitled Silver Jubilee. I visited every station, wrote about each of them in turn, and took pictures too. One part of this mammoth chronicling was a section entitled 5 things I found outside this station, which I thought I'd repeat nearly ten years later to see what's changed. The original lists are in the first column, using red text for anything that's no longer there. And my updated lists are in the second column, using green text for anything that definitely wasn't there last time. Think of it as an urban history project. A lot's changed.

5 things I found outside this station...
 May 2004November 2013
Stanmorea small green stall selling flowers, some slatted wooden benches, a pedestrian crossing, a big tube sign on a blue pillar, the Green Belt (the line stops right on the edge of London - a few hundred metres further on and you're in the countryside)Esquire's Barbers, Express Stop (a very mini newsagent), a dispenser containing free copies of Jewish News, Accident Advice House (part of the Stanmore Business Centre), a grumpy fat man swearing hoarsely into his phone
Canons Parka very short green cycle path, Canons Park Motors (operating from three arches underneath the station), Eddy's kebab shop, Hearts & Flowers florists, the number 79 bus.four very short green cycle paths, Canons Perk (coffee and snack bar), Cannons Tandoori (blatantly misspelt), the Fountain Park estate, a Barnardo's bin
QueensburyQueensbury Circus, Hunter & Hunter estate agents, some bicycles chained to the railings, Joe's Bake & Bite, three levels of flats built above the station entranceQueens Internet cafe, a new bike rack, a mega Morrisons, Hair Magic, a greengrocer stall selling fruit and veg at £1 per bowl
Kingsburya sign saying 'humps for 350 yards', a lot of local shops, a machine selling parking tickets, Jyoti Jewellers, a yellow box junctionSahara Lounge II, a security camera on a tall pole, National Halal Centre, Mepani News, a drinking control area (maximum penalty £500)
Wembley Parka pelican crossing, that huge extra entrance/exit for use on days when there's a big event nearby, the College of Northwest London, Olympic Way, a big sign pointing towards 'Stadium tours' (unlikely at present)Wembley Stadium (rebuilt, with arch), Victoria Hall Student Living (skyrise silver shoeboxes), a new huge station entrance/exit, the Ark Academy, Olympic Square (except no, it's more sort-of curved)
Neasdena pelican crossing, two giant billboards, Falcon Park RNIB centre, Adrian's Newsagent (a tiny kiosk), a pedestrian sign pointing towards 'Neasden Temple & Superstore' (I hope that's two different places)Cafe Dori, City Plumbing Supplies, a blue bobbly standalone National Lottery sign, a big empty warehouse to let (which may have been the RNIB centre), a sign pointing to 'Magistrates Court'
Dollis Hillthe 'Dollis Hill' mural, belisha beacons, a big tube sign on a brick column, wide avenues of suburban semis, a parade of shopsDollis Hill Garage, standalone cash machine (£1.75 to withdraw), Liberty Food & Wine, 'Kitten Found' poster, mini-roundabout
Willesden Greena yellow plastic box full of grit, Camerons Stiff estate agents (giggle), 10 piles of free magazines (mostly expat related), Dynamic dry cleaners, lots of laminated Wanted For Murder police posterssix smart flower boxes (still flowering), City AM newspaper box, Willesden Green Town Team noticeboard (mostly empty), a big bike rack (full), a shakes & smoothie shop (closed, about to become a barbers)
Kilburna double viaduct painted blue, Shoot Up Hill (actually the A5 Watling Street), an old postbox, Kilburn Flowers, a dry cleaners that sells records.Dutch & Dutch fruit & veg stall, Kilburn Confectionery, three bridges, a sign pointing to Brondesbury station, the Kilburn Mural 2004 (painted by Snug, Dane, Bleach, Busk, Tizer and Asset)
West Hampsteadlong queues for tickets, Mr Gingham's sandwich bar (sliced egg, £1.30), The Flower Gallery, the smell of bacon, a big green Camden 'Trade Waste' bin.Sorry Position Closed, Mr Gingham's sandwich bar (sliced egg, £1.50), North West 6 (gift shop), The Railway (pub & Costa), a streetcleaner eyeing me suspiciously
Finchley Roadthe 02 shopping centre (a very modern mall complete with fishtanks and jungle-themed escalators), George's Shoe Repairs, the A41, Waitrose, a mysterious old wooden door labelled 'Meakers'British College of Osteopathic Medicine, expensive florist stall (bouquets in multiples of £5), Canfield House, Evening Standard lock-up (white), Holy Trinity church (plus Alpha Course)
Swiss Cottagefive station exits via subways, a dead busy road junction on the Finchley Road, Ye Olde Swiss Cottage (a chalet-style pub, built in 1840 beside the old Junction Road tollgate, now complete with exhaust fume soaked beer garden), Fujifilm House, an old Odeon cinemaHampstead Theatre (House Full), Eton Avenue Farmers Market (late in the day, so absolutely no customers), Overground House, Star Box Coffee (a small kiosk with hygiene rating 4), Swiss Cottage Library
St John's Wooda circular ticket hall with high glass windows, seven floors of flats built above the station, a shrubbery complete with palm trees, the Abbey Road Café (it's tiny, but it has an informative website), hordes of Inter-Railers clutching Multimap printouts trying to work out where 'that' recording studo is.Acacia Road, a newspaper kiosk sponsored by the Wall Street Journal, a Countdown crossing, the Beatles Coffee Shop (it's tiny, but it has an informative website), hordes of foreign tourists consulting the Legible London map (which doesn't mark the terribly famous nearby zebra crossing)
Baker Streethundreds of tourists buying tacky souvenirs and pizzas, long queues for sightseeing buses, a statue of Sherlock Holmes, Transport for London's Lost Property Office (it's amazing what people lose), the big green copper dome of the London Planetarium (opened 1958)M&S Food To Go, long queues for the Sherlock Holmes Museum, Belgian Waffles, The Metropolitan Bar (formerly the Chiltern Court restaurant), the big green copper dome of the Marvel Super Heroes 4D film experience (it's an absolute travesty, sigh)
Bond Streetbustling Oxford Street, the West One shopping centre, bureaux de change, loads of people, this view.a hole where Crossrail will be, Forever 21, Delicious Crêpes, a park-up spot for pedicabs, lots of yellow Selfridges bags
Green Parkthe grinning lady who blocks the station exit trying to hand out free magazines, the smiley bloke who sells me my Evening Standard, Piccadilly, the Benjy's where I often buy lunch, a surprisingly high proportion of posh men wearing bow ties and dinner jacketsan Audi showroom, a Big Bus Tours driver on his break (yelling into his mobile), the new leafy chasm exit direct into Green Park, Langan's Brasserie, Sea Strata (a Portland stone artwork by John Maine)
WestminsterBig Ben (OK, St Stephen's Tower), the Houses of Parliament, Portcullis House, the River Thames, tight securityBig Ben (OK, the Elizabeth Tower), the 'secret' underground entrance to Parliament, Tesco Express, three groups of three Jehovah's Witnesses handing out 'Awake' magazine, St Stephen's Tavern
WaterlooWaterloo mainline station, Waterloo Eurostar station, a giant illuminated elephant's head at the top of an escalator, an IMAX cinema, homeless peoplefamously fresh baguettes, Bank Machine Welcomes You To London Waterloo, Fishcotheque, the Wellington, foreign students sat down on the floor chatting
Southwarka circular entrance lobby lit by a central glass drum, Waterloo East station (via dedicated exit), Blackfriars Road, a building site dominated by a towering blue crane (any buyers for a new glassy office building?), The Ring public housePalestra (a glassy office building, where TfL lives), snacklite, Rowland Hill House, 15 150th anniversary Art on the Underground posters, the former Blackfriars station
London BridgeLondon Bridge, the London Dungeon, Borough Market (selling posh organic food for Observer readers), Southwark Cathedral, Guy's Hospitalthe Shard, a new bus station, Sam Souviners (sic), the Shangri-La Hotel (opens Q4 2014), a temporary ticket office
BermondseyJamaica Road, an electronic display welcoming you to Bermondsey station, two cashpoints, Feltor Carrington estate agents, densely-packed council blockssign to Bermondsey Square Antiques Market, dual carriageway, Local Express, Jimmy's & Son Barber Shop (est 1970), an old soldier selling poppies
Canada Watera big round glass drum, a bus station, large tracts of open space awaiting redevelopment, Surrey Quays Shopping Centre, Canada Water (complete with bird raft and wind turbine)Canada Water Library (est 2012), the Maple Quays Sales and Marketing Suite, maple trees, Mousetail coffee cart, a private gym for residents of the adjacent development
Canary WharfDocklands, One Canada Square (Britain's tallest building), a sculpted head lying on its side, Jubilee Place shopping centre beneath Jubilee Park, four clocks on polesa rack of Boris Bikes, bankers, an advert for St Peter's Barge (London's only floating church), a row of international cuisine kiosks, Montgomery Square
North Greenwicha carelessly-discarded Dome, WH Smiths, a bus station in the middle of nowhere, a 1000-space car park, Group 4 securityClassico Expresso, a world class 'entertainment district', thousands of people rich enough to watch tennis, the London Diner, windswept Millennium Square
Canning Towna big flyover on the A13, an MFI superstore, a teeming bus station, Purvi newsagents, a large stone memorial commemorating the nearby Thames Ironworks (HMS Warrior was built here in 1860)Terry Spinks Place (under the flyover), the place, Matchday route to West Ham, the Bow Creek exit (no public access), flyers for Poverty Kickz (Charity Dance Workshop)
West HamIbstock bricks and small glass squares, Costcutter Express, a mini-roundabout, Memorial Avenue, a chippy under new management (shame, because the old management served right tasty cod)a superloo (10p fee), the Rial Lifestyle Cafe (recommended), DLR roundel, regular courtesy minibus to West Ham Bus Garage (invariably empty), a lady humming in the bus shelter
StratfordMeridian Square, a big bus station, a purple steam engine called Robert, scores of people, my local shopping centremy new local shopping centre, Deano's Continental Hot Food, obscuring fish scale sculptures, a zigzag row of security bollards, Stratford Plaza (all now sold)

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