Aldgate East tube station

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Aldgate East London Underground
Aldgate East stn northeast building.JPG
Eastern entrance next to Whitechapel Art Gallery
Aldgate East is located in Central London
Aldgate East
Aldgate East
Location of Aldgate East in Central London
Location Aldgate
Local authority London Borough of Tower Hamlets
Managed by London Underground
Number of platforms 2
Fare zone 1
London Underground annual entry and exit
2010 Decrease 8.970 million[1]
2011 Increase 9.160 million[1]
2012 Increase 10.13 million[1]
2013 Increase 11.66 million[1]
Key dates
6 October 1884 (6 October 1884) Opened
Other information
Lists of stations
Portal icon London Transport portalCoordinates: 51°30′55″N 0°04′20″W / 51.5152°N 0.0722°W / 51.5152; -0.0722

Aldgate East is a London Underground station located between Aldgate and Whitechapel in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets.

The station is in Travelcard Zone 1. It is on the Hammersmith & City line between Liverpool Street and Whitechapel, and the District line between Tower Hill and Whitechapel.

The station is currently undergoing refurbishment, with the platform walls being entirely retiled. However, when Metronet collapsed in the Summer of 2007, all work at Aldgate East was halted. This included the retiling of the station platforms and the refurbishment of the east ticket hall, which reopened on 31 March 2009. On the platforms, some areas of tile have been removed without being replaced, exposing the concrete beneath, whereas in other places the walls are still clad in pale yellow tiles.

Ticket barriers control access to all platforms.

Original station[edit]

The name "Commercial Road" had been proposed for the original Aldgate East station, which opened on 6 October 1884 as part of an eastern extension to the District Railway (now the District line), some 500 feet to the west of the current station, close to the Metropolitan Railway's Aldgate station. However, when the curve to join the Metropolitan Railway from Liverpool Street was built, the curve had to be particularly sharp due to the presence of Aldgate East station, at which it needed to be straight.

Resited station[edit]

As part of London Transport's 1935-1940 New Works Programme, the triangular junction at Aldgate was enlarged, to allow for a much gentler curve and to ensure that trains held on any leg of the triangle did not foul the signals and points at other places.[2] The new Aldgate East platforms were sited almost immediately to the east of their predecessors, with one exit facing west toward the original location, and another at the east end of the new platforms.

The new eastern exit was now close enough to the next station along the line, St Mary's (Whitechapel Road), that this station could also be closed, reducing operational overhead and journey times, as the new Aldgate East had effectively replaced two earlier stations.

The new station, opened on 31 October 1938 (the earlier station closing permanently the previous night), was designed to be completely subterranean, providing a much needed pedestrian underpass to the road above. However, in order to accommodate the space needed for this, and the platforms below, the existing track required lowering by more than seven feet. To achieve this task, whilst still keeping the track open during the day, the bed underneath the track was excavated, and the track held up by a timber trestle work. Then, once excavation was complete and the new station constructed around the site, an army of over 900 workmen lowered the whole track simultaneously in one night, utilising overhead hooks to suspend the track when necessary.[3] The hooks still remain.

District and Hammersmith and City line trains running into Aldgate East along two sides of the triangle (from Liverpool Street and from Tower Hill) pass through the site of the earlier station, most of which has been obliterated by the current junction alignment, although the extensive width and height and irregular shape of the tunnel can be observed.

Since the station was built completely under a widened road, and was built after concrete had started to be used as a construction material, the platforms have a particularly high headroom. Combined with the late 1930s style of tiling typical of the stations of the then London Passenger Transport Board, the platform area of the station presents a particularly airy and welcoming appearance, unusual on the underground at the time of construction. The tiling contains relief tiles, showing devices pertinent to London Transport and the area it served, were designed by Harold Stabler and made by the Poole Pottery.

Nearby places of interest to Aldgate East include the Whitechapel Art Gallery (next door to the eastern entrance), Petticoat Lane Market and Brick Lane.

Connections[edit]

London Buses routes 15; 25; 67; 115; 135; 205; 254 and night routes N15; N205; N253; N550 and N551 serve the station.

Past developments[edit]

A campaign was launched by a local councillor in a bid to change the name of the station to Brick Lane tube station by 2012,[4] but this has no official support and has not been successful. The same councillor has also campaigned to have Shoreditch High Street railway station renamed "Banglatown".[5]

Image gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d "Multi-year station entry-and-exit figures" (XLS). London Underground station passenger usage data. Transport for London. 2014. Retrieved 27 July 2014. 
  2. ^ H.F. Howson, London's Underground, 4th ed. London: Ian Allan, 1967, OCLC 502266970, p. 47.
  3. ^ Howson, pp. 47–48.
  4. ^ "Bid to name Tube stop Brick Lane". BBC News (bbc.co.uk). 2006-12-15. Archived from the original on 16 January 2007. Retrieved 2007-01-10. Tower Hamlets councillor Abdul Ullah wants the Tube station to be renamed in time for the 2012 summer Olympics. He told BBC London: "I think it will truly reflect the character of the area by renaming Aldgate East... people get it confused with Aldgate." He said the area's tourist trade was being affected because, while people had heard of Brick Lane and its reputation for curry restaurants, they could not find it on a Tube map. 
  5. ^ "Calls to rename East End station". BBC News (bbc.co.uk). 2008-05-20. Retrieved 2008-06-10. Tower Hamlets councillor Abdal Ullah said the new station should be called "Banglatown" to reflect the strong Bangladeshi community. But a TfL spokesman said "It is important that a station name takes into account the street or the official name of its area, as recorded on official maps." 

Sources[edit]

External links[edit]

Preceding station   Underground no-text.svg London Underground   Following station
District line
towards Upminster
towards Hammersmith
Hammersmith & City line
towards Barking
  Former services  
Preceding station   Underground no-text.svg London Underground   Following station
District line
(1884-1938)
towards Upminster