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The Central line opened on 30 July 1900 as a cross-London route from Bank to Shepherd's Bush, and was extremely well patronised from the outset.
Contributing to this popularity was the flat fare of two old pence (2d) which encouraged the press to call the line the "Twopenny Tube".
The flat fare lasted until the end of June 1907 when a threepenny fare was introduced for longer journeys.
In 1908, the line was extended west to Wood Lane to serve the adjacent White City Exhibition, and four years later was extended at its eastern end from Bank to Liverpool Street.
In 1920, the line was further extended to the west as far as Ealing Broadway. The 1939-1945 war intervened before plans for more ambitious extensions at each end of the line could be implemented, but these plans were revived after the war.
The Epping to Ongar shuttle service was run as a steam-hauled service by British Rail until 1957
New tracks next to the existing main line railway were brought into use from North Acton to West Ruislip, as were new tunnels from Liverpool Street to Leyton and from Leytonstone to Newbury Park.
North of both of these tunnels the Central took over existing suburban lines, to Ongar via Epping, and to Woodford via Hainault.
The Epping to Ongar shuttle service, which was run under contract as a steam-hauled service by British Rail until 1957, was closed in 1994.
Read an extended history of the Central line.
Improving the Central line
Central line facts
Number of passengers on the Central line
The Central line's 74 km (46 miles) make it the Underground's longest line. It serves 49 stations and requires 72 trains to operate the peak period service. Its total fleet of 85 trains, each of eight cars and known as 1992-tube stock, were manufactured by Adtranz in Derby.
The Central line's 74 km (46 miles) make it the Underground's longest line
Features of these trains are the smoother ride, acceleration and braking, an air suspension system, higher speeds, wider externally-mounted passenger-operated doors, brighter material design with large windows in the ends of cars, longer trains for increased capacity, new passenger-to-driver emergency communication facilities, automatic audible station announcements and closed-circuit television in the new-style cab to allow operators to monitor what is happening on platforms.
The overhaul of trains takes place at a large depot at West Ruislip. Routine Train maintenance work is carried out at this depot as well as at Hainault depot while minor maintenance is carried out at a smaller depot at White City. White City is also used to stable trains at night. There are also stabling sidings at Woodford and Loughton.
The simultaneous renewal of trains and signalling - and other equipment - during the 1990s, makes the best use of the Central line's capacity and provide important benefits for passengers with more frequent trains, greater comfort, shorter journeys and improved reliability.
The longest journey without change on the London Underground can be made on the Central line between West Ruislip and Epping (54.9 km, 34.1 miles), taking 1 hour 28.5 minutes.
Chancery Lane Station has the shortest escalator 9.1m (30ft) on the London Underground system, with just 50 steps.
At Greenford Station, an escalator takes passengers up to the trains a feature unique on the Underground.
The platforms at Redbridge are the shallowest on the tube lines, only 7.9m (26ft) below the road.
Central line management
The Central line's General Manager is Tricia Ashton.
London Underground is responsible for the maintenance, upgrading and renewal of the District line's assets.
If you wish to comment on the Central line services, or would like to know more about the line, please contact us.
An extended history of the Central line
The first part of the Central London Railway between Bank (originally called Cornhill) and Shepherds Bush was officially inaugurated by HRH the Prince of Wales (soon to become King Edward VII) on 27 June 1900. It opened to the public on 30 July 1900. It was the first railway in the country built along a route as crowded with passenger traffic as that between Bank and Marble Arch.
A Royal Commission of 1846 had recommended that no railway should penetrate the inner London area between the River Thames and the New Road (now Marylebone, Euston and Pentonville Roads), and Parliament seemed reluctant to go against this. This restriction explains why most of the present day main line termini lie on the borders of central London (around what is now the Circle line).
However, an Oxford Street & City Railway was proposed in 1865, although lack of finance meant this was abandoned in 1866. A similar scheme was projected in 1868 for a line from Marble Arch to the General Post Office with nine stations. In 1872 a company called the Mid London Railway promoted a Marble Arch to Whitechapel line, but failed to secure its powers.
In 1884, a London Central Railway Company sought unsuccessfully for authority to build an electrically operated line from Trafalgar Square to St Martins-le-Grand via Oxford Circus and Oxford Street. This was intended to be an extension of the Charing Cross & Waterloo Electric Railway (now part of the Bakerloo line). This was authorised in 1882 but never built.
The name Central London Railway was used in 1872-3 for an unsuccessful north-south promotion sponsored by the Midland Railway and the South Eastern Railway, for a link between St Pancras and Charing Cross Stations.
The world's first tube railway was the Tower Subway. Between March and November 1870 a cable-operated 14 seat carriage was worked on a 2ft 6in gauge railway laid through a tunnel linking Tower Hill with the south shore of the Thames. (Today this tunnel is only used as a cable run, although the entrance can still be seen near Tower Hill). Such was the success of the construction of this tunnel it established the broad principles upon which the present system was built. However, it was another twenty years until the next tube line was built. This was the first section of the City & South London Railway (now part of the Northern line). Although various other tube railway schemes were promoted in the 1880s, none was successful in obtaining Parliamentary sanction until after the City & South London Railway was working.
A Central London Bill introduced into Parliament in 1889 envisaged a tube railway from Queens Road, Bayswater, to the City at King William Street joining the City & South London Railway, but this was rejected in 1890.
Amended proposals were brought forward in the next parliamentary session, this time being successful. The Central London Railway Company was incorporated by an Act of 5 August 1891. It was empowered to build a railway, in twin tubes, from Shepherds Bush Green to Cornhill, to be worked by electric power which, at that time, was still in its infancy. There was a very late change of plan from the originally proposed stationary engines and cable.
A year later, the originally proposed terminus at Cornhill was replaced by one at Bank, under an Act of 28 June 1892. This Act also authorised an extension to Liverpool Street.
It is interesting to note that, in connection with the building of Bank Station, an arrangement was made with the City of London authorities whereby the Railway company constructed a series of pedestrian subways honeycombing the area between the Royal Exchange, the Mansion House and the Bank. Not only did these subways give access to the sub-surface ticket halls but were also available to the general public to avoid what was popularly considered "the worst crossing in London". These subways were completed and handed over for use on Tuesday 9 January 1900, some seven months before the railway opened.
Lack of finances delayed the start of construction, not helped by public apathy. Other tube railway promotions of the time were also producing poor responses, and none of the early tube railways were able to be built without the aid of substantial support from either a finance company or a contractor.
Through the Exploration Company, £2,167,500 was found by Sir Ernest Cassel and his friends making it possible to start construction. Work started in April 1896 at the site of Chancery Lane Station. Time occupied in construction far exceeded the original estimate, and work was temporarily abandoned because of contractual problems with the Great Eastern Railway and the North London Railway arising from the siting of the underground station beneath their termini at Liverpool Street and Broad Street.
An extension of time to 28 June 1899 had been secured by Act of 3 July 1894, and in September 1898 an opening was announced for June 1899. This too, proved impracticable, and a further extension of one year was granted by Act of 1 August 1899.
A trial trip was made on 1 March 1900 between Shepherds Bush and Queens Road (now Queensway), with generally satisfactory results but modifications were required so the planned opening of June 1900 proved too optimistic. When the final date of 28 June 1900 in the powers granted by Parliament was approached, the line was still not ready. It was decided that a ceremonial opening would be held on the penultimate day by the Prince of Wales, who had shown a great interest in the construction, and that passenger conveyance would be deferred until the end of July.
HRH The Prince of Wales, after a short ceremony, departed Bank Station at 15:36 and travelled non-stop, arriving at Shepherds Bush at 15:54. The journey took 18 minutes for a non-stop 5.75 miles. (It is interesting to note that the scheduled journey time in 2002 is 19.5 minutes including stops at all eleven stations). The railway opened for public service Monday 30 July 1900, when trains began running from Shepherds Bush at 05:15 and Bank at 05:20. Additionally, the Central Line was the first line to run all day on Sundays, other lines stopped for a "church interval".
At first the trains were very labour-intensive, eight men being required for a seven-car train - the driver and his assistant, a front and rear guard, and four gatemen. The Central London Railway was unique amongst London Underground railways in employing "call-boys" to call at the houses of all drivers living near Shepherds Bush to wake them up.
Initial adoption of the universal fare of 2d immediately gave the line the nickname "The Two-penny Tube", used by the Daily Mail as early as 4 August 1900. After 1905, the Central London Railway experienced a steady drop in traffic following the electrification of the Inner Circle, and the first boom in motor bus travel. The company then decided to abandon its flat fare policy and their first fare change came in July 1907, when a fare of 3d or three old pence for a journey of eight stations or more was introduced, although the name "Two-Penny Tube" continued for many years.
Passengers on the opening Monday totalled 84,5000, the following Thursday 93,000. On 29 October 1900, festivities on the occasion of the return from the Boer War of the City Imperial Volunteers, who made a State entry into London, resulted in 250,000 passengers being carried in one day. (By contrast, in 2001, the line was carrying 630,000 passengers per day). In five months from the opening until the end of the year, the total passengers carried amounted to almost 15 million.
The railway varied from 60 feet to 110 feet below the surface, with station tunnels 21ft 6in diameter and platforms originally 325 ft long. All Central London Railway platforms (except Wood Lane) were lengthened under a huge Government financed scheme of 11/07/1935 to 427 feet, in order to take eight car trains instead of six.
There were 49 modern electric lifts at the stations, a contrast to the hydraulic lifts that the first tube line, the City & South London Railway, had used. Of the original stations, escalators have replaced lifts at all locations apart from Holland Park, Queensway and Lancaster Gate, as follows: Bank 07/05/1924, Shepherds Bush 05/11/1924, Oxford Circus 30/06/1925, Tottenham Court Road 29/09/1925, Bond Street 08/06/1926. An extra escalator at Liverpool Street was inaugurated 20/05/1925 and St Pauls station was equipped with escalators upon rebuilding 01/01/1939. Marble Arch was rebuilt with escalators and reopened 15/08/1932 and likewise Chancery Lane 25/06/1934. A new joint station at Notting Hill Gate, providing interchange with the Metropolitan District line station, was opened on 01/03/1959, providing escalators to the Central Line replacing the lifts. British Museum station was closed 24/09/1933, being replaced by a new interchange station, complete with escalators, at Holborn.
The development of the White City Exhibition at Wood Lane, adjacent to the Central London Railway depot, meant that a second line, from Shepherds Bush to the depot, was built under an Act of 26 July 1907, forming a loop on which a station called Wood Lane was built, opposite the exhibition grounds. This opened on the same day as the Franco-British Exhibition, 14 May 1908.
At the eastern end, powers had expired for the extension to Liverpool Street, but fresh powers were obtained by an Act of 16 August 1909 with construction starting 11 July 1910. The extension opened 28 July 1912 bringing the terminus of the Central London Railway directly beneath the Great Eastern Railway station. The two were linked by escalators, the first to be installed on the Central London Railway. Escalators and passageways to Broad Street Station, for the North London Line, were opened 10 October 1912, and lifts to the Broad Street platform level opened 23 February 1913.
On 18 August 1911 the Central London Railway abandoned its policy of no through running with any other railway and secured powers to build a short extension from Wood Lane to connect with the intended Ealing & Shepherds Bush line of the Great Western Railway, over which it proposed to exercise running powers.
The Central London Railway became a member of the Underground Group from 1 January 1913. From the outset, the line was controlled by mechanical signalling from signal boxes. Tube railways built subsequently had adopted automatic signalling, and under the new ownership automatic signalling was installed in 1913, partly as part of a cost cutting exercise - there no longer needed to be as many staff on each train. Staff numbers were further able to be reduced when air operated doors were introduced on the trains between 1926 and 1928.
An Act of 15 August 1913 authorised construction of a further westwards line from Shepherds Bush to a junction with the London & South Western Railway at Gunnersbury, whence the Central London Railway would exercise running powers to Richmond. Work had not started by 1914, and the war deferred this project.
The Great Western Railway opened the Ealing & Shepherds Bush line for goods traffic 16 April 1917, but electrification and provision for passenger rolling stock by the Central London Railway for through running, could not be undertaken until after the war. Through trains started running from Liverpool Street to Ealing Broadway on Tuesday 03 August 1920.
The possibility of a Central London Railway extension to Richmond was altered materially by the fact that the London South Western Railway Kensington to Richmond service had ceased 3 June 1916, and the tracks between Hammersmith and Turnham Green were thereafter very little used. A shorter link at Shepherds Bush to these tracks was authorised in 1920, but was never constructed. The tracks were eventually used for Piccadilly line trains, although not until 1932 and then not to Richmond.
A major reconstruction of Bank station was completed on 5 May 1925. Despite the work being in extremely confined space, immediately below the road in ground which was once the bed of the River Walbrook, at no time was the surface traffic distrubed - a remarkable engineering feat.
The Central London Railway was absorbed by the London Passenger Transport Boards on 1 July 1933. Holborn Station opened on 18 September 1933, replacing British Museum station and providing a direct interchange with the Piccadilly line. The Bank-Monument link was opened 18 September 1933.
From 23 August 1937, the current Central Line name came into use.
Under the 1935-40 New Works Programme, the Central Line was the nucleus of a comprehensive scheme of extensions which included new tubes between Liverpool Street and Leyton, and between Leytonstone and Newbury Park. In addition, London North Eastern Railway lines to Epping and Ongar, and on the Fairlop loop were to be electrified for tube train operation. In the west, the Great Western Railway agreed to build new tracks alongside its existing railway from North Acton to Ruislip and Denham. None of these extensions opened until after the war, but sections of the new and as yet unused tunnels were adapted for use as air-raid shelters, bomb-proof stores and war material factories. The most striking example was the aircraft-component factory of the Plessey Co. Ltd. in the twin 2.5 mile tunnels between Leytonstone and Gants Hill. The factory opened in March 1942 and lasted three years.
Unfortunately, the use of stations as air raid shelters was not without tragedy. The partly completed Bethnal Green Station was used as an air raid shelter during the war and thousands of Londoners used it every night. It was involved in the worst ever individual disaster at a tube station. This occurred at the as yet unfinished station just before 8:30 pm on 03/03/1943 on the poorly lit rough concourse stairway from the street. There had been an air raid alert at 8:17 pm and people began pouring into the shelter, initially in a hurried but orderly way. At 8:27pm a salvo of anti-aircraft rockets were fired, causing the crowd to panic and surge forward. A woman with a child tripped and fell near the foot of the stairs. Others fell over her, blocking the passage but those behind, not realising what was happening, kept pushing harder and harder to get down, causing more people to fall. It was subsequently found that 173 people had died from suffocation, and 62 others had been injured.
The first extension to be completed was the 4.5 mile section between Liverpool Street and Stratford, being brought into public service on 04 December 1946. On 05 May 1947 tube trains were extended to Leytonstone using a new tunnel between Stratford and Leyton, and newly-electrified London North Eastern Railway lines.
Central Line trains were extended from North Acton to Greenford on 30 June 1947. At the new Greenford station, the entrance hall was at ground level but the railway was on a viaduct, and thus became the first, and only, station on the London Underground to have escalators leading from street level UP to the trains.
The extension to Ealing necessitated the provision of additional platforms at Wood Lane but these were only capable of handling six-car trains. In 1927, greyhound racing began at White City stadium, and passenger flows at Wood Lane increased greatly. The platforms had to be extended, but such was the pressure of space, they fouled the entrance to the depot. To overcome this, there was a short moveable section of platform, controlled by the signalman, which could be moved back to allow trains to run unhindered to the depot. This movable section of platform was installed in March 1928.
Eventually, a replacement station was constructed, nearer to the entrance to White City stadium and opened as White City station on 23 November 1947.
Public traffic began on the new Central Line tube services to Woodford and to Newbury Park on 14 December 1947 over a section of electrified London North Eastern Railway and in newly completed tunnels, vacated by the Plessey factory in 1945. This was the last new railway to be completed under private ownership, as on 01 January 1948 the main railway system was nationalised.
The last of the extensions to the Central Line didn't necessitate further construction. In the west, the Greenford to West Ruislip extension opened 21 November 1948, but the further extension to Denham never materialised. In the east, electric trains were extended from Newbury Park to Hainault on 31 May 1948, and from Woodford to Hainault, and Woodford to Loughton also on 21 November 1948. The section from Loughton to Epping was electrified and brought into use by Central Line trains 25 September 1949.
The section between Epping and Ongar continued to be worked by steam trains. A shuttle service of electric trains on the Central Line took over from the Great Eastern Railways steam service on 18 November 1957. Diminishing passenger numbers on this section forced the closure of Blake Hall station in 1981 and finally the complete closure of this section of line in 1994. There have been many proposals by private companies to reinstate some form of services along this section, and despite much debate none of these plans have come to fruition.
Fortunes were a lot better on the rest of the line, with steadily increasing passenger numbers. However, this caused problems with rapidly ageing rolling stock and equipment together with congested and shabby looking stations. London Undergound decided to embark upon a major modernisation programme to upgrade the line.
The major programme of works was called "The Central Line Project", and the proposal was approved by Government in December 1988. The authorised budget was £761m at July 1994 price levels. The project bought a completely new fleet of 85 eight car trains, new signalling throughout the line, new communications systems, modification of the power supply systems, civil engineering, tunnel restoration works between Shepherds Bush and Holborn, track replacement works and a completely new control centre in west London.
The simultaneous renewal of trains and signalling - and other equipment - makes the best use of the Central line's capacity and provide important benefits for passengers with more frequent trains, greater comfort, shorter journeys and improved reliability.
Such was the scale of the work that the project could not be called complete until the last signal box, at Hainault, closed permanently on 21/04/2001. Although the introduction of the new signalling system was not unproblematic, the lines performance steadily improved so that on 13/01/2002 the full benefits of Automatic Train Operation was implemented with a new timetable with more trains and corresponding improvements in journey times and reliability.
Openings and closures
Dates relate to Central Line services or its immediate predecessors. Certain stations pre-date the Central London Railway operations. (Stratford to Loughton was opened by Eastern Counties Railway 22 August 1856) (Loughton to Ongar was opened 24 April 1865)
|Blake Hall||First served||25-09-1949|
|North Weald||First served||25-09-1949|
|Theydon Bois||First served||25-09-1949|
|Buckhurst Hill||First served||21-11-1948|
|South Woodford||First served as South Woodford (George Lane)||14-12-1947|
|Renamed South Woodford||during 1950|
|Roding Valley||First served||21-11-1948|
|Grange Hill||First served||21-11-1948|
|Newbury Park||First served||14-12-1947|
|Gants Hill||First served||14-12-1947|
|Mile End||First served||04-12-1946|
|Bank/Monument interchange opened||18-09-1933|
|St Pauls||Opened as Post Office||30-07-1900|
|Renamed St Pauls||01-02-1937|
|Chancery Lane||Opened as Chancery Lane||30-07-1900|
|Renamed Chancery Lane (Grays Inn - Suffix gradually dropped)||25-06-1934|
|Holborn||Opened as Holborn (Kingsway) (Suffix gradually dropped)||25-09-1933|
|Tottenham Court Road||Opened||30-07-1900|
|Queensway||Opened as Queens Road||30-07-1900|
|Notting Hill Gate||Opened||30-07-1900|
|Interchange with Metropolitan District Railway station opened||01-03-1959|
|Ealing Broadway Central Line platforms opened||03-08-1920|
|West Ruislip||Opened as West Ruislip (for Ickenham) (Suffix gradually dropped)||21-11-1948|
|Start station||to||End station||Date||Year||Miles|
|Bank||to||Shepherds Bush||30th July||1900||5.77|
|Shepherds Bush||to||Wood Lane||14th May||1908||0.55|
|Bank||to||Liverpool Street||28th July||1912||0.45|
|Wood Lane||to||Ealing Broadway||3rd August||1920||4.33|
|Liverpool Street||to||Stratford||4th December||1946||4.23|
|North Acton||to||Greenford||30th June||1947||3.61|
|Leytonstone||to||Newbury Park||14th December||1947||4.11|
|Newbury Park||to||Hainault||31st May||1948||1.91|
|Woodford Junction||to||Hainault||21st November||1948||3.10|
|Greenford||to||West Ruislip||21st November||1948||4.38|
Automatic train operation
The Underground had long realised the potential advantages of Automatic Train Operation (ATO). Trials on the Underground started on a small section of the District line in the early 1960's, and were sufficiently successful to progress to full scale trials on the Hainault-Woodford section of the Central Line in 1964. This section was then operated as a separate service, with specially converted rolling stock. The 1967 stock specifically built for the Victoria line could operate over this section, which proved invaluable for initial testing and equipment familiarisation.
ATO trials progressed successfully so that it was introduced onto the Victoria line from its inception in 1968. The Victoria line thus became the first completely automatic Underground line.
One of the goals to be achieved with the modernisation of the Central Line during the 1990's was to improve journey times and provide additional capacity. It was decided to completely re-signal the line, and introduce state-of-the-art rolling stock that could be completely automatic. Although this was an automatic train operating system, it was considerably different to the Victoria line. On the back of the Central Line project, it was intended to introduce a similar system on the Jubilee line. However, considerable difficulties in implementing the computer software necessary to run the new system meant that the new Jubilee line rolling stock had to be able to be driven conventionally.
The first stage in implementing ATO was to implement Automatic Train Protection. Since just after the turn of the century, London Underground has had a mechanically operated form of train protection. Under the resignalling of the Central Line, a sophisticated electronic system was progressively put in place, enabling a greater number of trains to be operated whilst still maintaining adequate safety margins between trains.
The Automatic Train Protection used was based on Singapore's MRT's ATP system, which in turn was based upon London Underground's own Victoria line system.
Commissioning dates - ATP
|West Ruislip - Northolt||19-06-1995|
|Ealing Broadway - North Acton||07-08-1995|
|Northolt - North Acton||07-08-1995|
|North Acton - Notting Hill Gate||02-12-1996|
|Notting Hill Gate - Tottenham Court Road||16-02-1997|
|Tottenham Court Road - Stratford||10-03-1997|
|Stratford - Redbridge||14-04-1997|
|Leytonstone - South Woodford||14-04-1997|
|Redbridge - Newbury Park||27-07-1997|
|South Woodford - Epping||26-08-1997|
|Newbury Park - Woodford via Hainault||10-11-1997|
Commissioning dates - ATO
|Wanstead - Gants Hill||16-12-1999|
|Mile End - Liverpool Street||12-02-2000|
|Liverpool Street - Bond Street||22-03-2000|
|Bond Street - Shepherds Bush||05-04-2000|
|Mile End - Wanstead||17-07-2000|
|West Ruislip/Ealing Broadway - Shepherds Bush (Except West Acton to Ealing Broadway Westbound)||07-03-2001|
|Gants Hill - Woodford via Hainault & Leytonstone (Except track into Woodford Bay platform - commissioned 16-11-2001)||01-05-2001|
With Automatic Train Operation, and centralised control from the West London control centre, the remaining signal boxes along the Central Line could progressively be taken out of use, as follows:
|West Ruislip||Closed 06-11-1999|
|White City||Closed 11-02-2000|
|Marble Arch||Closed 10-12-1999|
|Liverpool Street||Closed 12-12-1999|
|Newbury Park||Closed 11-02-2000|
Cabins at Holborn and Bethnal Green were not in regular use, only being opened by local station staff as required. Their last dates of operation are not clear to the author.
Links with other lines
Ruislip Depot provides a link between the Tube and main line, and has the only regularly used stock transfer connection to Railtrack. Thus Ruislip depot can arguably be said to have played host to the widest range of Underground rolling stock of all locations on the LUL system; most recently hosting units of 1995 and 1996 stock for the Jubilee and Northern lines. The link to Railtrack was constructed just before World War Two, primarily for use by coal wagons. The Depot also connects with the Metropolitan line. Trains in the District line platforms at Ealing Broadway can run onto the eastbound Central line, although this route is normally secured out of use.
The overhaul of trains takes place at a large depot at Ruislip. Routine Train maintenance work is carried out at this depot as well as at Hainault depot while minor maintenance is carried out at a smaller depot at White City. There are also stabling sidings at Woodford and Loughton.
The Central Line is currently operated by a fleet of 85 trains, each of eight cars and known as 1992-tube stock. These were manufactured by Adtranz in Derby. They were introduced as part of the modernisation of the Central line, being progressively introduced into service from April 1993. The last 1962 stock train (which they replaced) was withdrawn 17-02-1995, and also saw the complete withdrawal of guards when the line became entirely one-person operated.
|Train customer capacity||1,652 Customers|
|Train length||132.298 metres|
Central Line facts and figures
In 2000 the Central Line carried 187.2 million passengers. Oxford Circus with an annual passenger count of 34.3 million is the line's busiest station.
The Central line's 74 km (46 miles) make it the Underground's longest line, serving 49 stations.
The longest journey without change on the London Underground can be made on the Central Line between West Ruislip and Epping (54.9 km, 34.1 miles), taking just under an hour and a half.
|Track length of the whole of the running lines||147.14 Kilometres|
|Track length in tunnel sections||52.82 Kilometres|
|West Ruislip to Epping||66.61 Kilometres|
|Leytonstone to Hainault||9.65 Kilometres|
|Hainault to Woodford (Loop)||6.05 Kilometres|
|White City to Ealing Broadway||6.47 Kilometres|
(If you are adding these together and coming up with 155.39 K, remember there are three tracks from Woodford junction to Woodford Westbound, and three tracks between White City and North Acton Junction.)
Chancery Lane Station has the shortest escalator on the London Underground system, with just 50 steps and a rise of just 9.1m (30ft)
At Greenford Station, an escalator takes passengers up to the trains, a feature unique on the Underground.
The platforms at Redbridge are the shallowest on the tube lines, only 7.9m (26ft) below the road.
To avoid paying compensation to property owners, the line was constructed as far as possible underneath existing roads, hence the twists and turns in the Bank area. But the sharpest curve on the Central line, and indeed the entire London Underground system, is actually the Caxton Curve, between Shepherds Bush and White City.