Travel Reference
In-Depth Information
tury, being built by subscription in 1745. Close by are the old watch and engine houses of
the parish.
Of the other off-beat experiences available in Rotherhithe (Redriff, by the way, in the
time of Gulliver, one of its famous inhabitants) is the underground station. Here the line
runs under the river from Rotherhithe to Wapping, through the Thames Tunnel engineered
by Brunel and opened in 1843. The station below ground has a Doré-like appearance and
a peculiarly pungent smell of damp. Strange exhalations steal down the walls, and in the
narrow trough that runs along the back of the platform at the intersection of the wall, small
fish have found a lodging. Even the trains have an unusual quality - steam trains come
through on occasion - and, as regards the underground, I have travelled in old carriages
still displaying the initials of the Metropolitan Railway in sandblasted glass on the panels
of the hand-operated sliding doors.
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