Royal Mail issued ten new stamps to mark the 150th anniversary of the London Underground – the oldest underground railway network in the world.
The stamps will be issued on 9 January – exactly 150 years after the opening in 1863 of the first part of what was to become London’s Underground, the steam-driven Metropolitan Railway running between Paddington Station and Farringdon Street via Kings Cross.
The London Underground (often shortened to the Underground) is a rapid transit system in the United Kingdom, serving a large part of Greater London and some parts of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Essex.
It incorporates the oldest section of underground railway in the world, which opened in 1863 and now forms part of the Circle, Hammersmith & City, and Metropolitan lines and the first line to operate electric trains, in 1890, now part of the Northern line.
The oldest sections of the London Underground completed 150 years of operations on 10 January 2013. The Underground system is also colloquially known as the Tube. As commonly used today both by Londoners and in most official publicity, this term embraces the entire system.
It originally applied only to the deep-level lines with trains of a smaller and more circular cross-section, and served to distinguish them from the sub-surface “cut-and-cover” lines that were built first and originally used steam locomotives.
The earlier lines of the present London Underground network were built by various private companies. They became part of an integrated transport system in 1933 when the London Passenger Transport Board (LPTB) or London Transport was created.
The underground network became a separate entity in 1985, when the UK Government created London Underground Limited (LUL). Since 2003 LUL has been a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London (TfL), the statutory corporation responsible for most aspects of the transport system in Greater London, which is run by a board and a commissioner appointed by the Mayor of London.
The Underground serves 270 stations and has 402 kilometres (250 mi) of track, 45 per cent of which is underground. It is the fourth largest metro system in the world in terms of route miles, after the Seoul Metropolitan Subway, the Shanghai Metro and the Beijing Subway.
The Stamp Details are:
2nd class – the Metropolitan Railway; railway tunnelling
1st class – Edwardian commuters; Piccadilly Line’s Boston Manor Station
£1.28 – Classic rolling stock in 1938; Canary Wharf Station 1999
Title: 150th Anniversary of London Underground
Date of Issue: 9 January 2013
Country: Great Britain
Denominations: 2nd class x 2, 1st class x 2, £1.28 x 2, 1st class, 77p, 87p & £1.28