The Winchester

"Not all those who wander are lost" – Tolkien

Cut and Cover #4 – Kings Cross

with 2 comments

April 2011

The pursuit of the ‘LU’ continues. Kings Cross was one of the first stations I believe to have been visited by this generation of explorers, but this was before my attentions turned to mass transit – by the time I got involved, the old access had been secured.

Being a cut and cover station, we assumed that access would be somewhat easier than the more ubiquitous deep level stations and thus started sniffing around the area looking for clues. With the tracks being visible in a cutting, talks of abseiling into this space arose but were eventually rejected on the grounds that by the time we were taking this seriously, we simply didn’t need to, thanks to Gary and Patch.

The underground is a true infiltrator’s paradise – a whole range of challenges await anybody with the desire to visit these stations and it’s the sheer variety of different access methods that has surprised me in our quest to ‘conquer’ the underground. Some things never change though – there may be workers, there may be work trains. The track may be switched on, you always have to exercise the same caution whether you’re in a station with the easiest of access, or somewhere more technical.

Visits are usually brief, although the theory that getting in and out are the riskiest parts of any exploration of an enclosed space seems to be ignored when considering the underground – what’s the point in hanging around?

Kings Cross was more typical of an abandoned station that other cut and cover examples. Lords, Swiss Cottage and Marlborough Road are shells, and Mark Lane is missing a platform and it’s stairs. Kings Cross has both platforms, staircases on both sides, and feels more like the Parisien abandoned stations I’ve visited.

Of course, we are not the first to access this space. Writers have been visiting and tagging spots across the system since before I was even born, admittedly in an era before the increased levels of security stemming from both the 7/7 attacks and a crackdown on graffiti across the capital. It is also the presence of graffiti that spurs us on to bigger and better things, although I would disagree with the comments that have arisen on PlaceHacking regarding competition between the parties. Look around for graffiti when you’re in the LU and where you don’t see it, you know that you’re doing well and pushing for more, newer things.

Peering up the tunnel, I spotted a light brighter than the others, and a distinct rattling noise. Initially writing it off as workers at the re-sited and active Kings Cross station, it started moving so we dived into the shadows to allow what transpired to be a work train to pass. Then we left.

As the summer approaches, the London Underground is becoming more and more of an obsession. At what point does it stop?

Written by Winch

April 19th, 2011 at 11:35 am

Posted in Trains

Tagged with

2 Responses to 'Cut and Cover #4 – Kings Cross'

Subscribe to comments with RSS or TrackBack to 'Cut and Cover #4 – Kings Cross'.

  1. Quality stuff mate, keep on pushing the boundaries and delivering the goods 🙂


    19 Apr 11 at 11:42 am

  2. […] Lane, South Kentish Town, Lords, Swiss Cottage, Aldwych, Holborn, Brompton Road, Marlborough Road, Old King’s Cross, York Road, Down Street, City Road, the list goes on… Night after night, we have stood on the […]

Leave a Reply