Crystal Palace: Plans to restore ornate Victorian subway approved

  • Published
Crystal Palace subwayImage source, Getty Images
Image caption,
The subway was opened in 1865 as a way for visitors to get to the Crystal Palace

A hidden Victorian subway in south-east London is set to be renovated after plans to restore it were approved.

The subway was opened in 1865 as a grand entrance to the Crystal Palace, but it fell into disrepair in the years after the famous attraction burnt down.

The £3.2m project will see the rebuilding of the existing subway structure as well the construction of new parapet walls and a roof.

Bromley Council said it hoped the work would begin later this year.

Image source, Getty Images
Image caption,
The palace was originally built in Hyde Park for the Great Exhibition in 1851 but was subsequently moved to what is now Crystal Palace Park

The Grade-II* listed subway, which is hidden beneath the Crystal Palace Parade, was opened to link the Crystal Palace High Level Station to the palace itself.

The Crystal Palace was destroyed by fire in November 1936, while the station was demolished in September 1954, which meant the ornate subway began to decay.

Image source, Bromley Council
Image caption,
The council hopes the works will mean the structure is removed from the "at risk" register
Image source, Bromley Council
Image caption,
The new roof will be visible from Crystal Palace Parade

It has been occasionally used over the years, including as a World War Two air raid shelter, for some community events and as the setting for a music video by The Chemical Brothers, but it has been placed on Historic England's "at risk" register.

Plans to restore it to allow the structure to re-open more fully were approved by Bromley Council on Thursday.

The project, which has been designed by architects Thomas Ford & Partners, will be funded by grants from the City of London Strategic Investment Pot and Historic England, as well as contributions form the Friends of Crystal Palace Subway.

Media caption,

The secret subway of Crystal Palace 'set to re-open' (from 2016)

Speaking after the plans were approved, Peter Morgan, Bromley's executive councillor for Renewal, Recreation and Housing, said it was "essential we carry out these works in a timely manner to preserve this cherished subway for years to come and ensure it does not deteriorate further".

Related Internet Links

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.