Wood Lane (Central line) tube station

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
This article is about the former Wood Lane Central Line station which existed 1908-1947. For the present-day Wood Lane station, see Wood Lane tube station. For other stations named Wood Lane, see Stations around Shepherd's Bush.
Wood Lane
1900 Map showing location of Central London Railway's Wood Lane depot before construction of Wood Lane station
Place Shepherd's Bush
Opened by Central London Railway
Platforms 4
Key dates Opened 1908
Closed 1947
Replaced by White City
Portal icon London Transport portal

Wood Lane tube station is a disused station on the Central line of the London Underground. It was built to serve the Franco-British Exhibition of 1908 and the 1908 Summer Olympics.

The location of the station was confined and its configuration was awkward, requiring alterations on a number of occasions to meet operational requirements.

A station of the same name is located on the Hammersmith & City line.

Wood Lane depot, 1900[edit]

Prior to the 1908 exhibition, the western terminus of the Central London Railway (CLR) was at Shepherd's Bush. North of Shepherd's Bush station was located the CLR's power station and Wood Lane depot. Trains originally accessed the depot via a single, sharply curved tunnel from the station's westbound platform heading northwards under Caxton Street. Trains then exited the tunnel to the north of the depot and used a reversing siding to run into the depot in a southbound direction. Trains running from the depot reversed the process and entered the eastbound platform of Shepherd's Bush station via a junction to the west of the station.

Wood Lane station, 1908[edit]

Underground stations in Shepherd's Bush area, showing the location of Wood Lane station

When the exhibition was opened, a temporary station was constructed within the northern perimeter of the depot on the site of the reversing siding. A new tunnel was bored to connect directly to the end of the eastbound tunnel at Shepherd's Bush station forming a loop.

As constructed for the exhibition, Wood Lane station had just a single track with platforms on each side - one for unloading and one for loading. Trains entered the station anti-clockwise in a westbound direction from the tunnel under the depot and exited heading south back into tunnel in the direction of Shepherd's Bush station.

Following the success of the exhibition a number of other entertainment venues - notably White City Stadium - grew up in the area and the temporary station became a permanent fixture.

Wood Lane station, 1920[edit]

Central Line services began to operate to Ealing Broadway in August 1920 and the station was reconfigured to accommodate through-running from Ealing Broadway to the West End and the City.

A new sub-surface tunnel was constructed to the north of the existing loop platforms on which was located a new westbound platform for trains heading to Ealing Broadway. Another new sub-surface tunnel was constructed to the west (and below) the loop platforms providing an eastbound platform for trains arriving from Ealing Broadway. Trains terminating or starting at Wood Lane continued to use the loop platforms. The station thus had a triangular shape.

Closure, 1947[edit]

Due to its awkward arrangement and unsatisfactory operation Wood Lane station was closed in 1947 when a new replacement station (White City) was opened a short distance to the north. The Wood Lane platforms were abandoned. The depot became known as White City Depot.

Demolition, 2003[edit]

Wood Lane tube station in 2001.
The Wood Lane station site being redeveloped in 2006.
The former site of Wood Lane station now occupied by the Westfield White City bus interchange.

Until the station's demolition between 2003 and 2005 the old eastbound platform could be seen from passing trains heading from White City to Shepherd's Bush and the former eastbound platform was incorporated into the new depots' roads using the single track, which can now clearly be seen when leaving White City station when travelling to Shepherd’s Bush station.

The site of the station and the depot has been redeveloped for the new Westfield London shopping centre, and in summer of 2005, the curving ramps to the 1908 platforms and the platforms themselves, in the north-west corner of the site, disappeared. A new depot has been constructed completely below ground under the shopping centre on a new site.

Elements of the 1908 street level building facade were dismantled and moved to the London's Transport Museum depot at Acton for reconstruction. The restoration works on the roundel pediment were completed by London Underground Ltd. in 2009. The 'Underground' roundel is currently on display at Wood Lane Station.


Until the late 1920s the CLR used cars that were accessed by gated entrances at the end of the cars. When new rolling stock was introduced with sliding pneumatic doors the loop platforms had to be extended to provide access to all doors but it was not possible to extend the platform on the inside of the loop (the south side) as it interfered with an access track to the depot. A pivoting section of platform was constructed that could be moved to allow access to the depot to be made when required.


In The Tomorrow People's first serial, Slaves of Jedikiah, the outdoor shots of the abandoned station where the Lab was located showed it to be Wood Lane. Also, the dockland scenes in the Doctor Who serial The Dalek Invasion of Earth were enacted there. [1]

A 1987 edition of the South Bank Show about the London Underground was introduced by Melvyn Bragg who appeared out of the fog, carrying a torch on the platform of Wood Lane Station.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ [1]

External links[edit]

Preceding station   Underground no-text.svg London Underground   Following station
Central line
towards Epping, Hainault
or Woodford (via Hainault)

Coordinates: 51°30′32.81″N 0°13′27.7″W / 51.5091139°N 0.224361°W / 51.5091139; -0.224361