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Brief History of Willesden Green Station

Anna Zverkova
Anna Zverkova

This is an exceptionally busy commuter line even though only one tube line stops – it is the Jubilee Line running from Stanmore to Stratford and you are in central London within 10 (Baker Street) minutes. Willesden Green is reckoned by Estate Agents to be one of the best Zone 2 spots to commute from. It is a relatively safe tube station with a low crime rate and heavily used by bike passengers. Annually, around 8 million passengers use it every weekday. Which means it is amongst the top 20 tube stations in usage (2019 tfl data set).

Willesden Green Underground station was originally built for the steam train and opened as part of the Metropolitan Line on 24 November 1879.  The station served originally as temporary Met line terminus and between 1894 and 1937 was known as Willesden Green and Cricklewood.  In 1914 the station underwent a reconstruction to add platforms for fast trains.  (Historic England tells us.)  From 1939 it also served the Stanmore branch of the Bakerloo line with the Metropolitan Line services being withdrawn a year later.  The station was transferred to the Jubilee Line when it opened in 1979 to commemorate the Queen’s Silver Jubilee (two years previously).

The current street-level building was designed and built in 1925 by the famous Metropolitan Railway architect, Charles Walter Clark and for this reason was awarded Grade II listing in 2006 (as many of CW Clark’s underground station designs are).  The street-level building and shop fronts remain ones of the best examples of his distinctive style of using marble-white ‘architectural ceramic or terracotta’ or ‘faience‘ frontage tiles for many of the buildings he designed (Egware Road, Great Portland Street and Farringdon being other notable examples of this style of his). The Willesden Green building is also of special architectural interest for its original lettering, integral and original shopfronts and its well kept ticket hall with the equally distinctive and increasingly rare sea green brick tiles.  The diamond-shaped clock is also a trademark of his style.

Willesden Green station by W H R Godwin, Apr 1958

Source: London Transport Museum

Willesden Green is an exceptionally busy station even though it is served only by the Jubilee line (running from Stanmore to Stratford) with a long history. It is a pleasure to be part of its history and our gardening group is greatful to the TFL for an oportunity to green our beloved tube station.  

Willesden Green Tube Station London by Alan Goddard 1997

Source: Pinterest