Hammersmith tube station is a London Underground station in Hammersmith. It is on the District Line between Barons Court and Ravenscourt Park, and on the Piccadilly Line between Barons Court and Turnham Green. The station is in Travelcard Zone 2.
The station was opened on 9 September 1874 by the Metropolitan District Railway (MDR, now the District Line) as the western terminus of the railway when it was extended from Earl's Court. In 1877, Hammersmith became a through station when the MDR was extended west to meet the London and South Western Railway (L&SWR) at Ravenscourt Park and services over the L&SWR tracks started to Richmond.
On 5 May 1878, the Midland Railway began running a circuitous service known as the Super Outer Circle from St Pancras to Earl's Court via Cricklewood and South Acton on the Dudding Hill Line. It operated over a now disused connection between the North London Railway and the L&SWR Richmond branch. The service was not a success and was ended on 30 September 1880.
On 15 December 1906, the Great Northern, Piccadilly & Brompton Railway (GNP&BR, now the Piccadilly Line) opened with Hammersmith as its western terminus.
The opening of the western extension of the Piccadilly Line from 4 July 1932 required the reconstruction of the station at track level to increase the number of platforms to four and much of the station was rebuilt behind the Harry W Ford designed station building on Hammersmith Broadway. Charles Holden designed a secondary entrance for Queen Caroline Street virtually identical to one he designed at the same time for Highgate station (now Archway).
The station buildings were demolished along with the neighbouring bus garage in the early 1990s and incorporated into a modern shopping centre and Underground and bus interchange. During the redevelopment parts of the tiling from the Harry W Ford façade showing the station name and the lines serving it were removed and are preserved within the new construction. They now form a frame to a decorative mosaic of Hammersmith Bridge in the station's north ticket hall.
The 2003 DerailmentEdit
The Tunnel just outside the station was the location of a train derailment on the Piccadilly Line on October 17, 2003 when the wheels of the last carriage left the tracks. There were no injuries, but there was some damage to rails and sleepers. A report from the subsequent investigation, with input from maintenance contractors Metronet, London Underground, rail unions and rail consultants, determined that the direct cause was a broken rail, and suggested that this resulted from outdated specifications for track inspection, resourcing and equipment. Hammersmith tube sign
The rail that snapped was on the outside of a curved section of track. It had been turned around by London Underground in 2001, because of corrosion on its inner face, so that what had been its running side was positioned on the outside of the curve. This meant that what had been the running side – the corroded section – was then put under tension.
The combination of corrosion and the forces exerted on it by trains led to the rail snapping. Ultrasonic inspection equipment specified for track inspections was unable to detect outside face cracks of the type thought to have led to the break. Metronet indicated that it would respond to the incident by using different ultrasound detection equipment, increasing the frequency of track inspections, and preferentially replacing rails rather than turning them around.