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Mayor of London

Poems on the Underground

Poetry on the Underground book

The scheme, Poems on the Underground, was launched in 1986 following an idea from American writer, Judith Chernaik, to get poetry to a wider audience.

Poems, selected by Judith Chernaik and poets Cicely Herbert and Gerard Benson, are displayed on posters in 3,000 advertising spaces in train carriages across London, and are usually changed three times a year.

The scheme is supported by TfL, Arts Council England and The British Council.

The programme, which aims to showcase a diverse range of poetry, including classical, contemporary, international and work by new poets, has been a great success. It's also proved to be a great way of introducing the public to poetry, with passengers often wanting to read more. This has led to the publication of a series of books, the latest being Poems on the Underground: A New Edition, published by Penguin Books in 2012.

The latest book is available from the London Transport Museum shop, which also sells copies of the poem posters.