Arsenal (London Underground)

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Station input

Wall tiles with the former station name Gillespie Road

Arsenal is an underground London Underground station in the London Borough of Islington. It is located in Travelcard fare zone 2, in close proximity to Highbury, Arsenal FC’s disused football stadium in the borough of Highbury. In 2013, 3.09 million passengers used the station served by the Piccadilly Line.[1]


The station was opened on 15 December 1906 by the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway, the predecessor company to the Piccadilly Line. The original name was Gillespie Road.[2] After Arsenal FC moved into their new stadium in 1913, their manager Herbert Chapman pushed for a name change. Eventually the station was renamed Arsenal (Highbury Hill) on 31 October 1932.[3] In 1960 the parenthesis addition was dropped. The wall tiles showing the original name Gillespie Road in large letters remain. The station was closed for several weeks due to the terrorist attacks of 7 July 2005; it reopened on 4 August.[2]


The station building is located on a narrow street in the middle of a residential area with terraced houses in Victorian style. It was built in a gap between two residential buildings. The architect Leslie Green applied the typical “house style” of the Underground Electric Railways Company of London: blood-red glazed terracotta bricks, large semi-circular windows on the floor and serrated cornices. Although the building was completely rebuilt in the early 1930s and widened by the demolition of an adjacent house, Arsenal still has one of the narrowest facades on the entire Underground network.

Unusual for an underground station of this tube type is the lack of escalators and elevators, instead a ramp a little over 100 meters long leads to the platforms. The reason for this is on the one hand the shallow depth, on the other hand the location of the tunnel tubes under the tracks of the East Coast Main Line. Due to its location away from main roads, Arsenal is far less frequented than neighbouring stations on this line. On match days of Arsenal FC, however, the station is still used above average, as the Emirates Stadium, opened in 2006, is also not far away.

Web links

Commons: Arsenal (London Underground)– Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual references

  1. 2013 annual entries and exits.(Excel, 228 kB) Transport for London, 2014, retrieved on 27 July 2014.
  2. a b Piccadilly Line.Clive’s Underground Line Guides, accessed 22 January 2013 (English).
  3. Local tube station changes to ‘Arsenal’.Arsenal FC, archived fromOriginal30September 2007; retrieved 22 January 2013 (English).
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Holloway Road Piccadilly line flag box.svg Finsbury Park

Coordinates 51° 33′ 30.6″ N, 0° 6′ 20.9″ W