Charing Cross tube station
Charing Cross tube station is a London Underground
London Underground
The London Underground is a rapid transit system serving a large part of Greater London and some parts of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Essex in England...

 station at Charing Cross
Charing Cross
Charing Cross denotes the junction of Strand, Whitehall and Cockspur Street, just south of Trafalgar Square in central London, England. It is named after the now demolished Eleanor cross that stood there, in what was once the hamlet of Charing. The site of the cross is now occupied by an equestrian...

 in the City of Westminster
City of Westminster
The City of Westminster is a London borough occupying much of the central area of London, England, including most of the West End. It is located to the west of and adjoining the ancient City of London, directly to the east of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea, and its southern boundary...

 with entrances located in Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square
Trafalgar Square is a public space and tourist attraction in central London, England, United Kingdom. At its centre is Nelson's Column, which is guarded by four lion statues at its base. There are a number of statues and sculptures in the square, with one plinth displaying changing pieces of...

 and The Strand. The station is served by the Northern
Northern Line
The Northern line is a London Underground line. It is coloured black on the Tube map.For most of its length it is a deep-level tube line. The line carries 206,734,000 passengers per year. This is the highest number of any line on the London Underground system, but the Northern line is unique in...

 and Bakerloo
Bakerloo Line
The Bakerloo line is a line of the London Underground, coloured brown on the Tube map. It runs partly on the surface and partly at deep level, from Elephant and Castle in the south-east to Harrow & Wealdstone in the north-west of London. The line serves 25 stations, of which 15 are underground...

 lines and provides an interchange with the National Rail
National Rail
National Rail is a title used by the Association of Train Operating Companies as a generic term to define the passenger rail services operated in Great Britain...

 network at station. On the Northern Line it is between and stations on the Charing Cross branch, and on the Bakerloo Line it is between Embankment and stations. The station is in Travelcard Zone 1
Travelcard Zone 1
Fare zone 1 is the central zone of Transport for London's zonal fare system used for calculating the price of tickets for travel on the London Underground, London Overground, Docklands Light Railway and, since 2007, on National Rail services. For most tickets, travel through the zone is charged...


The station was served by the Jubilee Line
Jubilee Line
The Jubilee line is a line on the London Underground , in the United Kingdom. It was built in two major sections—initially to Charing Cross, in central London, and later extended, in 1999, to Stratford, in east London. The later stations are larger and have special safety features, both aspects...

 between 1979 and 1999, acting as the southern terminus of the line during that period.

For most of the history of the Underground the name Charing Cross was associated not with this station but with the station now known as Embankment. See below for the complex history of the name.


The Northern line and Bakerloo line parts of the station were originally opened as two separate stations and were combined when the now defunct Jubilee Line platforms were opened. The constituent stations also underwent a number of name changes during their history.

The first part of the complex, the Bakerloo line platforms, was opened as Trafalgar Square by the Baker Street & Waterloo Railway (BS&WR) on 10 March 1906.

The Northern line platforms were opened as Charing Cross by the Charing Cross, Euston & Hampstead Railway
Charing Cross, Euston & Hampstead Railway
The Charing Cross, Euston and Hampstead Railway , also known as the Hampstead tube, was a railway company established in 1891 that constructed a deep-level underground "tube" railway in London. Construction of the CCE&HR was delayed for more than a decade whilst funding was sought...

 (CCE&HR, now the Charing Cross branch of the Northern line) on 22 June 1907. At its opening this station was the southern terminus of the CCE&HR which ran to two northern termini at and Highgate (now ) tube stations.

Although both lines were owned and operated by the Underground Electric Railways Company of London
Underground Electric Railways Company of London
The Underground Electric Railways Company of London Limited , known operationally as The Underground for much of its existence, was established in 1902. It was the holding company for the three deep-level "tube"A "tube" railway is an underground railway constructed in a circular tunnel by the use...

 (UERL), there was no direct connection below ground and passengers interchanging between the lines had to do so via two sets of lifts and the surface.

In an effort to improve interchange capabilities, the CCE&HR was extended the short distance south under Charing Cross main line station to connect with the BS&WR and the District Railway (another UERL line), opening as such on 6 April 1914. The interchange station between the BS&WR and District had been know hitherto as Charing Cross (District) and Embankment (BS&WR). The original CCE&HR terminus to the north of Charing Cross main line station was renamed Charing Cross (Strand) and the new station and the BS&WR station to the south of the main line station was named Charing Cross (Embankment). These names lasted only a short time: on 9 May 1915, Charing Cross (Strand) was renamed Strand and for Charing Cross (Embankment) the tube lines adopted the District Railway name of Charing Cross. At the same time, the separate Strand station on the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway
Piccadilly Line
The Piccadilly line is a line of the London Underground, coloured dark blue on the Tube map. It is the fifth busiest line on the Underground network judged by the number of passengers transported per year. It is mainly a deep-level line, running from the north to the west of London via Zone 1, with...

 was also renamed Aldwych
Aldwych tube station
Aldwych is a closed London Underground station in the City of Westminster, originally opened as Strand in 1907. It was the terminus and only station on the short Piccadilly line branch from Holborn that was a relic of the merger of two railway schemes. The disused station building is close to the...

 to avoid confusion.

The Northern line Strand station was closed on 4 June 1973 to enable the construction of the new Jubilee line platforms. These platforms were constructed between the Bakerloo line and Northern line platforms together with the long missing below ground interchange between those two lines. In anticipation of the new interchange station, from 4 August 1974 Charing Cross was renamed Charing Cross Embankment. The Jubilee line platforms and the refurbished Northern Line platforms opened on 1 May 1979 from which date the combined station including Trafalgar Square was given its current name; simultaneously Charing Cross Embankment reverted to the original BS&WR name of Embankment, ending 109 years of association with the name Charing Cross.
Although Charing Cross was constructed as the southern terminus of the Jubilee line, plans already existed to continue the line to the east towards Lewisham
Lewisham is a district in South London, England, located in the London Borough of Lewisham. It is situated south-east of Charing Cross. The area is identified in the London Plan as one of 35 major centres in Greater London.-History:...

 in south-east London. The tunnels were therefore constructed beyond the station beneath Strand as far as 143 Strand, almost as far as Aldwych station which would have been the next stop on the line. The subsequent regeneration of the Docklands in London's East End
East End of London
The East End of London, also known simply as the East End, is the area of London, England, United Kingdom, east of the medieval walled City of London and north of the River Thames. Although not defined by universally accepted formal boundaries, the River Lea can be considered another boundary...

 during the 1980s and 1990s required additional transport infrastructure and the eventual route of the extension took the new tunnels south from to provide new interchanges at , and stations and then on to Greenwich
Greenwich is a district of south London, England, located in the London Borough of Greenwich.Greenwich is best known for its maritime history and for giving its name to the Greenwich Meridian and Greenwich Mean Time...

 and Stratford
Stratford, London
Stratford is a place in the London Borough of Newham, England. It is located east northeast of Charing Cross and is one of the major centres identified in the London Plan. It was historically an agrarian settlement in the ancient parish of West Ham, which transformed into an industrial suburb...


The new tunnels branch away from the original south of Green Park station and, on the opening of the final section of the line between Green Park and Waterloo stations on 20 November 1999, the Jubilee Line platforms at Charing Cross were closed to the travelling public. The escalator
An escalator is a moving staircase – a conveyor transport device for carrying people between floors of a building. The device consists of a motor-driven chain of individual, linked steps that move up or down on tracks, allowing the step treads to remain horizontal.Escalators are used around the...

s continuing down to the closed platforms can, however, still be seen through closed doors at the bottom of the escalators from the ticket hall.


A 100 metre (330 ft) long mural along the Northern line platforms was designed by David Gentleman
David Gentleman
David Gentleman is an English artist-designer. He studied illustration at the Royal College of Art under Edward Bawden and John Nash. He has worked in various media - watercolour, lithography, wood engraving - and at scales ranging from the platform-length murals for Charing Cross underground...

. It shows scenes from the construction of the original Charing Cross
Eleanor cross
The Eleanor crosses were twelve originally wooden, but later lavishly decorated stone, monuments of which three survive intact in a line down part of the east of England. King Edward I had the crosses erected between 1291 and 1294 in memory of his wife Eleanor of Castile, marking the nightly...

, memorial of Eleanor of Castile, the wife of Edward I
Edward I of England
Edward I , also known as Edward Longshanks and the Hammer of the Scots, was King of England from 1272 to 1307. The first son of Henry III, Edward was involved early in the political intrigues of his father's reign, which included an outright rebellion by the English barons...


Former Jubilee line platforms

Although now closed to the public, the Jubilee Line platforms of Charing Cross station are still maintained by TfL for use by film and television makers needing a modern Underground station location. While still open they were used in the 1987 film The Fourth Protocol
The Fourth Protocol (film)
The Fourth Protocol is a 1987 Cold War spy film starring Michael Caine and Pierce Brosnan, based on the novel The Fourth Protocol by Frederick Forsyth.- Plot :The plot centres on a secret 1968 East-West agreement to halt nuclear proliferation...

, and after closure in numerous productions, including different episodes of the television series Spooks
Spooks is a British television drama series that originally aired on BBC One from 13 May 2002 – 23 October 2011, consisting of 10 series. The title is a popular colloquialism for spies, as the series follows the work of a group of MI5 officers based at the service's Thames House headquarters, in a...

, the films Creep (2004), 28 Weeks Later
28 Weeks Later
28 Weeks Later is a 2007 British/Spanish film sequel to the 2002 post-apocalyptic horror film 28 Days Later. 28 Weeks Later was directed by Juan Carlos Fresnadillo and released in the United Kingdom and United States on 11 May 2007...

), The Deaths of Ian Stone
The Deaths of Ian Stone
The Deaths of Ian Stone is a 2007 horror film directed by Dario Piana. It stars Mike Vogel, Christina Cole, Jaime Murray, and Michael Dixon....

and the video for the Alex Parks
Alex Parks
Alex Parks is an English singer-songwriter. She is best known for winning Fame Academy in 2003, for her singles, and for the albums, Introduction and Honesty.-Biography:...

's single "Cry
Cry (Alex Parks song)
"Cry" is the second and final single from Alex Parks' debut album Introduction. It was released in February 2004 and peaked at #13 in the UK Singles Chart.-Track listing:# "Cry" # "Maybe That's What It Takes"...


In 2006, it was proposed that an extension to the Docklands Light Railway
Docklands Light Railway
The Docklands Light Railway is an automated light metro or light rail system opened on 31 August 1987 to serve the redeveloped Docklands area of London...

 from Bank station would take over the platforms. Intermediate stations at and would be opened, mirroring the planned route of the old Fleet Line
Jubilee Line
The Jubilee line is a line on the London Underground , in the United Kingdom. It was built in two major sections—initially to Charing Cross, in central London, and later extended, in 1999, to Stratford, in east London. The later stations are larger and have special safety features, both aspects...


In 2010, the concourse serving the platforms was used for London Underground's licensed busking
Street performance or busking is the practice of performing in public places, for gratuities, which are generally in the form of money and edibles...


The Jubilee Line platforms are still used by Jubilee Line trains as a sidings to reverse trains from south to north; to do so southbound trains terminate and detrain at Green Park Station and are worked empty to Charing Cross platform. The tunnels also extend beyond the platforms into the "Overrun". Each overrun has the capacity to stable a further two trains each.

Transport connections

London bus routes 6, 9, 11, 13, 15, 23, 87, 91, 139, 176, 388 and night route N9, N11, N13, N15, N21, N26, N44, N47, N91, N343, N550 and N551 all serve the station and its surrounding areas.

Nearby places of interest

  • Trafalgar Square
    Trafalgar Square
    Trafalgar Square is a public space and tourist attraction in central London, England, United Kingdom. At its centre is Nelson's Column, which is guarded by four lion statues at its base. There are a number of statues and sculptures in the square, with one plinth displaying changing pieces of...

  • National Gallery
    National Gallery, London
    The National Gallery is an art museum on Trafalgar Square, London, United Kingdom. Founded in 1824, it houses a collection of over 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. The gallery is an exempt charity, and a non-departmental public body of the Department for Culture, Media...

     and National Portrait Gallery
  • South Africa House
    South Africa House
    The High Commission of South Africa in London is the diplomatic mission from South Africa to the United Kingdom. It is located at South Africa House, a building on Trafalgar Square, London...

  • Canada House
    Canada House
    The High Commission of Canada in the United Kingdom in London is the diplomatic mission from Canada to the United Kingdom. It is housed in two buildings in London.-History:...

  • St Martin-in-the-Fields
    St Martin-in-the-Fields
    St Martin-in-the-Fields is an Anglican church at the north-east corner of Trafalgar Square in the City of Westminster, London. Its patron is Saint Martin of Tours.-Roman era:Excavations at the site in 2006 led to the discovery of a grave dated about 410...

  • Nelson's Column
    Nelson's Column
    Nelson's Column is a monument in Trafalgar Square in central London built to commemorate Admiral Horatio Nelson, who died at the Battle of Trafalgar in 1805. The monument was constructed between 1840 and 1843 to a design by William Railton at a cost of £47,000. It is a column of the Corinthian...

  • Admiralty Arch
    Admiralty Arch
    Admiralty Arch is a large office building in London which incorporates an archway providing road and pedestrian access between The Mall, which extends to the South-West, and Trafalgar Square to the North-East. It was designed by Sir Aston Webb, constructed by John Mowlem & Co and completed in 1912...

  • Savoy Hotel
    Savoy Hotel
    The Savoy Hotel is a hotel located on the Strand, in the City of Westminster in central London. Built by impresario Richard D'Oyly Carte with profits from his Gilbert and Sullivan operas, the hotel opened on 6 August 1889. It was the first in the Savoy group of hotels and restaurants owned by...

  • The Mall
    The Mall (London)
    The Mall in central London is the road running from Buckingham Palace at its western end to Admiralty Arch and on to Trafalgar Square at its eastern end. It then crosses Spring Gardens, which was where the Metropolitan Board of Works and, for a number of years, the London County Council were...

  • Whitehall
    Whitehall is a road in Westminster, in London, England. It is the main artery running north from Parliament Square, towards Charing Cross at the southern end of Trafalgar Square...

  • Covent Garden
    Covent Garden
    Covent Garden is a district in London on the eastern fringes of the West End, between St. Martin's Lane and Drury Lane. It is associated with the former fruit and vegetable market in the central square, now a popular shopping and tourist site, and the Royal Opera House, which is also known as...

External links

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