Chairman Pip's Railway Thoughts

Call me sentimental

Posted in London, Other general stuff about railways by Chairman Pip on 10 February 2011

Now that financial allocations have been…well, allocated, and things are going ahead, will you forgive just a smidgin of sentimentality? As one reads about things, one becomes vicariously wistful, especially when they’re gone forever. Oh sure, the Royal Navy has an HMS Vanguard, but it isn’t HMS Vanguard, the last battleship to be constructed for Britain, sent to the breakers yard after only a decade and a half of service, is it? Likewise, the two railway termini in London that are gone completely, demolished to make way for office space, Broad Street and Holborn Viaduct. However, maintaining the name is a way of maintaining the link to the past (hence the campaign to ensure that, when the current Ark Royal meets her fate, whatever it may be, the name will be returned to a ship again). So, now that both Thameslink and Crossrail have both been guaranteed, how’s about a restoration of a couple of old names? Given that the Crossrail station at Liverpool Street is to be built underneath the Broadgate, which was built on the site of Broad Street station, and given that the planned entrance to the Crossrail station will use the old entrance that allowed access to Liverpool Street tube station from Broad Street, why not give it the name of Broad Street? Similarly, City Thameslink was built as a replacement for Holbon Viaduct and it has an entrance on Holborn Viaduct, so why not just call it Holborn Viaduct? It’s is a much better name than “City Thameslink”. This could then show that, even in the onward push of 21st century progress, there is a recognition of the link to the past that is so important.

A Crossrail train at the old Broad Street is something you won't see, but there's no reason why Crossrail trains couldn't stop at a new Broad Street

Broad Street in 1981


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