125. The carriage shed at Queen’s Park

Shedding followersJust north of Queen’s Park station on the Bakerloo line, you experience something I’m pretty sure you can’t do anywhere else on the Underground.

You get to pass through a carriage shed.

That might not sound particularly tremulous, and I grant you it’s not on a par with the kind of sensory overload you endure on a ghost train or enjoy on a seaside tram. But it shares the same novelty value. And if you’re in the mood, there’s a tingle of excitement to be had from peeping inside somewhere it feels you’re not meant to go.

She said, there's something in the train shedIf you’re heading north, you trundle through entrance 21, past a very old (but still perfectly legible) 10 MILES AN HOUR warning sign. Once you’re inside, look out of the right-hand windows and you’ll probably see a couple of trains sitting in berths 22 and 23, not really doing much. You’ll possibly spend a minute or so doing the same, before your train is given a green signal to carry on up the line to Kensal Green: nemesis of all connoisseurs of The London Game.

If you’re heading south you’ll probably come through number 24. Whichever track you end up on, however, the effect is the same: a moment of anxiety as you conclude you’re sitting in a train that’s been sent to the sidings, followed by a longer moment of embarrassment when you realise your mistake.

Two little ducksWhen you pass through the shed, I wonder under whose jurisdiction you fall. I can imagine there are issues over “conveyance”, with unions and management holding urgent negotiations to agree terms of safe passage. I hope there are “lucky” entrances, and that superstitions have built up around particular numbers. In bingo lingo, would you prefer two little ducks or a knock on the door?

For shed followers, you probably can’t beat arguing about something like this. For shedding followers, you certainly can’t beat writing about something like this.

3 comments
  1. Andrew Bowden said:

    It is a great feature, but I’ve always wondered quite why they built it like that. After all, its not like they didn’t know the line would be extended. Sure there must be a reason. It is jutting I’ve never found it.

  2. SD said:

    Is it perhaps because that the Bakerloo line was cut back to Queen’s Park for a while and then later re-extended northwards a bit?

  3. James said:

    I ALWAYS enjoy passing through the shed. You’ve hit the nail on the head by saying it feels like you’re somewhere you shouldn’t be. There’s basically something quite funny about the notion that a tube train could get lost

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