Underground London

Subterranean City, by Antony ClaytonLast week, as part of April’s Cityread London campaign, Westminster’s Paddington Library hosted an illustrated talk by author Antony Clayton entitled ‘Subterranean London’ after his  book of the same name. It was, justifiably, a very popular event and we had to be creative in finding enough chairs for everyone who wished to attend!

This fascinating talk about the various tunnels, underground rivers and sewers which lie beneath the paved streets of Central London opened up a world that few, if any, of us will ever see. Many of these tunnels (except perhaps the London Underground lines) are virtually unknown to everyone except a tiny number of the millions of people who live in, work in and visit London.

Antony Clayton at Paddington Library, April 2013Antony covered historic as well as current matters, including showing pictures of ghost stations – former tube stations which no longer serve the tube network – and brought us up to date with the latest developments at Crossrail, the country’s biggest engineering project since the Channel Tunnel.

The line of the Crossrail route will be just a few hundred yards away from Porchester Road, and some Crossrail staff who work quite close to Paddington Library were in attendance!

The talk was part of the capital-wide Cityread London 2013 project. Events are related to themes and characters in the novel A Week in December by Sebastian Faulks. One of the main characters, Jenni, drives a train on the Circle Line. Several events and talks, both for children and adults, will reflect the theme of transport and areas of London.

Cityread London - get involvedIf you missed the Paddington talk, don’t worry – Anthony will be visiting Kensington Central Library this Thursday 11 April. Visit our Cityread London page for more events in Westminster, and links to events within the Triborough area and London as a whole.

[Laurence]

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