Leicester Square

Underground station, existing between 1906 and now

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Underground station · Leicester Square · WC2H ·
September
5
2013

Leicester Square, while indeed a square, is also the name for a tube station.

Leicester Square tube station, on the Northern and Piccadilly lines, is located on Charing Cross Road, a short distance to the east of Leicester Square itself.

On early Tube plans, the station was listed as Cranbourn Street, but the present name was used when the station was first opened by the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway on 15 December 1906. Offices above the red terracotta station building on the east side of Charing Cross Road - designed by Leslie Green - was in its early years also occupied by the publishers of the Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack and an image of cricket stumps appears above a doorway. On all four platforms, film sprockets are painted down the entire length and on the top and bottom of the display area (blue on the Piccadilly line platforms, and black on the Northern line platforms), due to the four premiere cinemas in Leicester Square. The station is featured briefly during the introductory video sequence of the sixth Harry Potter film.


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CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE LOCALITY


The Underground Map   
Added: 8 Dec 2020 00:24 GMT   

Othello takes a bow
On 1 November 1604, William Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello was presented for the first time, at The Palace of Whitehall. The palace was the main residence of the English monarchs in London from 1530 until 1698. Seven years to the day, Shakespeare’s romantic comedy The Tempest was also presented for the first time, and also at the Palace of Whitehall.

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Comment
Linda Webb   
Added: 27 Sep 2021 05:51 GMT   

Hungerford Stairs
In 1794 my ancestor, George Webb, Clay Pipe Maker, lived in Hungerford Stairs, Strand. Source: Wakefields Merchant & Tradesmens General Directory London Westminster 1794

Source: Hungerford Stairs

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TUM   
Added: 27 Aug 2022 10:22 GMT   

The Underground Map
Michael Faraday successfully demonstrated the first electrical transformer at the Royal Institute, London.

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Roy Batham   
Added: 7 Jan 2022 07:17 GMT   

Smithy in Longacre
John Burris 1802-1848 Listed 1841 census as Burroughs was a blacksmith, address just given as Longacre.

Source: Batham/Wiseman - Family Tree

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Scott Hatton   
Added: 11 Sep 2020 19:47 GMT   

Millions Of Rats In Busy London
The Daily Mail on 14 April 1903 reported "MILLIONS OF RATS IN BUSY LONDON"

A rat plague, unprecedented in the annals of London, has broken out on the north side of the Strand. The streets principally infested are Catherine street, Drury lane, Blackmore street, Clare Market and Russell street. Something akin to a reign of terror prevails among the inhabitants after nightfall. Women refuse to pass along Blackmore street and the lower parts of Stanhope street after dusk, for droves of rats perambulate the roadways and pavements, and may be seen running along the window ledges of the empty houses awaiting demolition by the County Council in the Strand to Holborn improvement scheme.

The rats, indeed, have appeared in almost-incredible numbers. "There are millions of them," said one shopkeeper, and his statement was supported by other residents. The unwelcome visitors have been evicted from their old haunts by the County Council housebreakers, and are now busily in search of new homes. The Gaiety Restaurant has been the greatest sufferer. Rats have invaded the premises in such force that the managers have had to close the large dining room on the first floor and the grill rooms on the ground floor and in the basement. Those three spacious halls which have witnessed many as semblages of theatre-goers are now qui:e deserted. Behind the wainscot of the bandstand in the grillroom is a large mound of linen shreds. This represents 1728 serviettes carried theee by the rats.

In the bar the removal of a panel disclosed the astonishing fact that the rats have dragged for a distance of seven or eight yards some thirty or forty beer and wine bottles and stacked them in such a fashion as to make comfortable sleeping places. Mr Williams. the manager of the restaurant, estimates that the rats have destroyed L200 worth of linen. Formerly the Gaiety Restaurant dined 2000 persons daily; no business whatever is now done in this direction.

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Bruce McTavish   
Added: 11 Mar 2021 11:37 GMT   

Kennington Road
Lambeth North station was opened as Kennington Road and then Westminster Bridge Road before settling on its final name. It has a wonderful Leslie Green design.

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Lived here
Julian    
Added: 23 Mar 2021 10:11 GMT   

Dennis Potter
Author Dennis Potter lived in Collingwood House in the 1970’s

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Jessie Doring   
Added: 22 Feb 2021 04:33 GMT   

Tisbury Court Jazz Bar
Jazz Bar opened in Tisbury Court by 2 Australians. Situated in underground basement. Can not remember how long it opened for.

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Robert smitherman   
Added: 23 Aug 2017 11:01 GMT   

Saunders Street, SE11
I was born in a prefab on Saunders street SE11 in the 60’s, when I lived there, the road consisted of a few prefab houses, the road originally ran from Lollard street all the way thru to Fitzalan street. I went back there to have a look back in the early 90’s but all that is left of the road is about 20m of road and the road sign.

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Lived here
Richard Roques   
Added: 21 Jan 2021 16:53 GMT   

Buckingham Street residents
Here in Buckingham Street lived Samuel Pepys the diarist, Charles Dickens and Rudyard Kipling

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Jude Allen   
Added: 29 Jul 2021 07:53 GMT   

Bra top
I jave a jewelled item of clothong worn by a revie girl.
It is red with diamante straps. Inside it jas a label Bermans Revue 16 Orange Street but I cannot find any info online about the revue only that 16 Orange Street used to be a theatre. Does any one know about the revue. I would be intesrested to imagine the wearer of the article and her London life.

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Born here
sam   
Added: 31 Dec 2021 00:54 GMT   

Burdett Street, SE1
I was on 2nd July 1952, in Burdett chambers (which is also known as Burdett buildings)on Burdett street

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LATEST LONDON-WIDE CONTRIBUTIONS TO THE PROJECT

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Richard Lake   
Added: 28 Sep 2022 09:37 GMT   

Trade Union Official
John William Lake snr moved with his family to 22 De Laune Street in 1936. He was the London Branch Secretary for the Street Masons, Paviours and Road Makers Union. He had previously lived in Orange St now Copperfield St Southwark but had been forced to move because the landlord didn’t like him working from home and said it broke his lease.
John William snr died in 1940. His son John William Lake jnr also became a stone mason and at the end of World War two he was responsible for the engraving of the dates of WW2 onto the Cenotaph in Whitehall.

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Lived here
Julie   
Added: 22 Sep 2022 18:30 GMT   

Well Walk, NW3 (1817 - 1818)
The home of Benthy, the Postman, with whom poet John Keats and his brother Tom lodged from early 1817 to Dec., 1818. They occupied the first floor up. Here Tom died Dec. 1, 1818. It was next door to the Welles Tavern then called ’The Green Man’."

From collected papers and photos re: No. 1 Well Walk at the library of Harvard University.

Source: No. 1, Well Walk, Hampstead. | HOLLIS for

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Comment
   
Added: 4 Sep 2022 15:42 GMT   

Superman 2
I worked here in 1977. The scene in the prison laundry in Superman 2 was filmed here.

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TUM   
Added: 27 Aug 2022 10:22 GMT   

The Underground Map
Michael Faraday successfully demonstrated the first electrical transformer at the Royal Institute, London.

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Admin   
Added: 26 Aug 2022 15:19 GMT   

Bus makes a leap
A number 78 double-decker bus driven by Albert Gunter was forced to jump an accidentally opening Tower Bridge.

He was awarded a £10 bonus.

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Admin   
Added: 26 Aug 2022 12:44 GMT   

The world’s first underground train
The very first underground train left Paddington on the new Metropolitan Railway bound for Farringdon Street.

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Admin   
Added: 26 Aug 2022 12:41 GMT   

Baker Street
Baker Street station opened on the Metropolitan Railway - the world’s first underground line.

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Admin   
Added: 26 Aug 2022 12:17 GMT   

TV comes to Olympia
Over 7000 people queued to see the first high definition television pictures on sets at the Olympia Radio Show. The pictures were transmitted by the BBC from Alexandra Palace, introduced by Leslie Mitchell, their first announcer.

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NEARBY LOCATIONS OF NOTE
Admiral Duncan The Admiral Duncan is well-known as one of Soho’s oldest gay pubs.
Charing Cross Charing Cross denotes the junction of the Strand, Whitehall and Cockspur Street, just south of Trafalgar Square
De Hems De Hems has become a base for London’s Dutch community, serving bitterballen and frikandellen.
Garrick Yard Garrick Yard, together with the more familiar Garrick Street to the northeast of here, both took their names from the Garrick Club which commemorates the famous 18th century actor, David Garrick.
Hungerford Stairs The Hungerford Stairs were the entrance point to Hungerford Market from the River Thames. They are now the site of Charing Cross railway Station.
Leicester Square Leicester Square, while indeed a square, is also the name for a tube station.
L’Escargot L’Escargot is one of London’s oldest restaurants.
Nelson’s Column Nelson’s Column is a monument in Trafalgar Square built to commemorate Horatio Nelson’s decisive victory at the Battle of Trafalgar during which he lost his life.
Northumberland House Northumberland House was a large Jacobean townhouse in London, which was the London residence of the Percy family, the Dukes of Northumberland.
Piccadilly Circus Piccadilly Circus was built in 1819 to connect Regent Street with the major shopping street of Piccadilly.
Queen’s Theatre The Queen’s Theatre is located in Shaftesbury Avenue on the corner of Wardour Street.
The Adelphi The Adelphi is a small district surrounding the streets of Adelphi Terrace, Robert Street and John Adam Street.
Trident Studios Trident Studios was located at 17 St Anne’s Court between 1968 and 1981.
Wyld’s Great Globe Wyld’s Great Globe was an attraction situated in Leicester Square between 1851 and 1862.

THE STREETS OF LEICESTER SQUARE
Cambridge Circus, WC2H Cambridge Circus is the intersection of Shaftesbury Avenue and Charing Cross Road.
Charing Cross Road, WC2H Charing Cross Road is a street running immediately north of St Martin-in-the-Fields to St Giles Circus.
Coventry Street, W1D Coventry Street is a short street connecting Piccadilly Circus to Leicester Square. On the London Monopoly board, it was named after the politician Henry Coventry, secretary of state to Charles II.
Leicester Square, WC2H Leicester Square is a central tourist attraction of London.
Leicester Street, WC2H Leicester Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2H postal area.
Litchfield Street, WC2H Litchfield Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2H postal area.
Little Compton Street, W1D Little Compton Street was a street in Soho.
Little Newport Street, WC2H Little Newport Street is one of the streets of London in the WC2H postal area.
Manette Street, W1D Manette Street in Soho is named after the character from Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities.
Newport Court, WC2H Newport Court was laid out approximately on the site of the courtyard of Newport House.
Newport Place, W1D Newport Place was named after Mountjoy Blount, Earl of Newport (Isle of Wight), who owned a house on Newport Street in the 17th century.
St Martins Place, WC2N St Martin’s Place is a short stretch connecting Trafalgar Square to the bottom of Charing Cross Road.
Wedgwood Mews, W1D Wedgwood Mews is one of the streets of London in the W1D postal area.

THE PUBS OF LEICESTER SQUARE
Bar Termini This pub existed immediately prior to the 2020 global pandemic and may still do so.
Molly Moggs Ale & Pie House This pub existed immediately prior to the 2020 global pandemic and may still do so.
Prince Of Wales Theatre This pub existed immediately prior to the 2020 global pandemic and may still do so.


Click here to explore another London street
We now have 506 completed street histories and 46994 partial histories
Find streets or residential blocks within the M25 by clicking STREETS




LOCAL PHOTOS
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William Shakespeare
TUM image id: 1509551019
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Transmission
TUM image id: 1509553463
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Hungerford Stairs circa 1828
TUM image id: 1557403389
Licence: CC BY 2.0
Tottenham Court Road (1927)
TUM image id: 1556973109
Licence: CC BY 2.0

In the neighbourhood...

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Theatreland, Shaftesbury Avenue
Credit: IG/my.wandering.journey
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William Shakespeare
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Transmission
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Trafalgar Square was a former station on the Bakerloo Line before it combined with Strand station on the Northern Line to become the new Charing Cross underground station.
Credit: The Underground Map
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Strand stretches along the River Thames between Trafalgar Square and Aldwych
Credit: The Underground Map
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Piccadilly Theatre (2007)
Credit: Turquoisefish
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Hungerford Stairs circa 1828
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Buses outside the National Gallery in Trafalgar Square. Date of photo unknown
Credit: Stockholm Transport Museum
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Tottenham Court Road (1927)
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The Royal Opera House, Bow Street frontage, with the statue of Dame Ninette de Valois in the foreground
Credit: Russ London
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