Ever wondered where that ramp in the middle of Southampton Row in Holborn leads? Turns out it’s the way down to… a long-disused underground tram tunnel and interchange.
The Kingsway Tram Subway was operational between 1906 until 1952 and was originally built to connect London’s north and south tram networks together, in an effort to encourage ‘respectable’ commuters to travel to the then sketchy area of town as it was redeveloped at the beginning of the last century.
Long story short, by the 1930s the tram network had gained a reputation for being the Tube’s frumpy, slow and uncomfortable ugly sister and was phased out of use, occasionally re-surfacing as a filming location.
Remember the 1998 Avengers film starring Uma Thurman? You know, the one film critic Tom Bond called the “Citizen Kane of awful.” It was the bunker in that.
Most of the cobbled Grade II-listed tunnel still exists, including original features such as the tram rails and electrical conduits.
This summer, you’ll get to explore it all as the Transport Museum has opened it up to the public via its Hidden London Tours.
Shillings at the ready.
Tours Thu-Sun Aug 12-Sep 26. Tube: Holborn. £45, £40 concs. www.ltmuseum.co.uk