diamond geezer

 Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Wood Lane
Wood Lane roundel» Station opened: Sunday 12th October 2008 [press release]
» It's not the two previous Wood Lane stations: That's the one on the Central Line (1908-1947) and the one on the Metropolitan Line (1908-1914 & 1920-1959). Both opened for the Franco-British Exhibition at White City. Neither was on the same spot as the new station. [map] [map]
» New station mostly funded by: Westfield, the mega-shopping ├╝ber-retail complex opening at the end of the month, perfectly timed for the nadir of global recession.
» Change here for: Westfield (obviously); BBC Television Centre (directly across the road, except there's a barrier and a six-foot drop in the way); White City station (only 250m away, but sorry, we couldn't afford a direct interchange).
» The front of the station looks like: a very long metal & glass letterbox [photo]
» The ticket hall: doesn't have a ticket office, just a lot of machines. Now that everyone has Oyster, ticket offices are a thing of the past.
» The ticket hall feels like: a giant funnel (very broad at the front, fairly narrow at the rear).
» Cross to the westbound platform: by passing beneath an atmospheric low brick arch, part of the original railway viaduct [photo]
» Passengers in a wheelchair: can pop up to the platform by lift.
» The stairs are: light, wide and airy [photo]
» The platforms: curve gently out of sight (please mind the gap between the train and the platform edge) [photo]
» Seating is: vandal-proof and therefore not terribly comfortable [photo]
» The next train indicators are: non-existent (as at all other stations along this stretch of line).
» The station is: spacious, clean and efficient.

Wood Lane
Shepherd's Bush Market

Shepherd's Bush Market
Shepherd's Bush Market roundel» Station opened: Wednesday 1st April 1914, as Shepherd's Bush.
» Station renamed: Sunday 12th October 2008, because all of a sudden there are rather too many other stations named Shepherd's Bush.
» New station named after: a long string of characterful stalls beneath the railway viaduct, many of them Sikh-run, selling clothing and Afro-Caribbean food and all the usual market staples, and about as far away from the Westfield megabucks chainstore experience as it's possible to get [photo]
» Change here for: Shepherd's Bush Market (obviously); Shepherds Bush Empire (queue here for Cyndi Lauper); proper shops.
» The other station which could have been renamed Shepherd's Bush Market (because it's just as close, but at the southern end): Goldhawk Road.
» The front of the station looks like: the featureless entrance to a tiled public convenience [photo]
» The ticket hall: has a ticket office, some out-of-date maps and a handful of barriers [photo]
» The ticket hall feels like: a rather squashed passageway.
» The stairs are: enclosed, steep and narrow.
» Passengers in a wheelchair: are completely stuffed.
» The platforms: have a protective wooden canopy at one end, and nothing much at all at the far end.
» Seating is: a series of recently-replaced metal benches.
» The next train indicators are: non-existent (as at all other stations along this stretch of line).
» The station is: compact, weatherbeaten and outclassed.

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