New ridership figures from Transport for London (TfL) show the busiest August Bank Holiday for bus journeys and Tube journeys since the pandemic.
Over August Bank Holiday weekend, passenger numbers on Transport for London (TfL) bus and Tube services were the highest since the pandemic, with many travelling to west London for the Notting Hill Carnival.
Tube station during Notting Hill Carnival 2023. // Credit: Transport for London
This month, Transport for London is encouraging Londoners to walk, cycle and hop on public transport to make the most of the Open House Festival to be held from Wednesday, 6 to Sunday 17 September when over 600 sites open their doors to the public.
Every borough has sites to visit, including fascinating buildings and spaces normally closed to the public.
Tapping out of a Tube station. // Credit: Transport for London
Although there are many sites to visit in central London, there are also some fantastic hidden gems in outer London boroughs, including:
- Crystal Palace Subway, which dates from 1865 and is hidden under Crystal Palace Parade.
- Shirley Windmill, which as built in 1854 and Croydon’s only surviving windmill.
- The Cartoon Museum with 4,300 cartoons, comics and caricatures.
- The Museum of Brands in Notting Hill, which houses Robert Opie’s collection of 12,000 branded items
- Grove Gardens Chapel in Richmond, a Church of England mortuary chapel built in the Gothic Revival style.
- Garrick’s Temple to Shakespeare in Hampton, where Garrick housed his collection of Shakespeare relics.
- Tours of the enlarged Bank and Monument stations.
- A tour of the IFS Cloud Cable Car.
Expanded Tube station concourse. // Credit: Transport for London
Other events during the Open House Festival include:
- Explore the secrets of Baker Street station with London Transport Museum’s Hidden London tour.
- From Forest to Morris, which is a walk around historic Walthamstow showing how it grew from a village into a thriving suburb, its social history and the variety of buildings.
- A House for Artists in Barking Town Centre, which is a creative workshop providing affordable, sustainable housing for artists.
- A guided tour of Seven Acre Lake on the Canons Park Estate with its Canada geese, swans and ducks.
- A walking tour to learn about the women of London that starts at Liverpool Street station and finishes at St Paul’s cathedral, visiting places connected to incredible women.
- The Croydon Stands Tall Art Trail with a trail of giant giraffe sculptures.
Deputy Mayor for Culture and Creative Industries, Justine Simons OBE, said: “London has been roaring back this summer, with Londoners and tourists from around the world using TfL’s network to explore our capital’s cultural gems.
“There is much more to enjoy this autumn as London plays host to a wide range of events, including London Fashion Week and Open House Festival. I hope that many more Londoners and visitors will use public transport to discover our city, as we continue to build a more prosperous London for everyone.”
Emma Strain, TfL’s Customer Director, said: “We have had a bumper summer with people using public transport to make the most of London’s cultural offerings, including the Notting Hill Carnival over the Bank Holiday weekend.
“The summer season might now be coming to an end, but there’s still plenty to see and do. This September we encourage people to take public transport, walk or cycle to explore a different side to the city with the Open House Festival, with the rare opportunity to see the inner workings of London’s buildings and sites and find out the secrets of our incredible city.”
Phineas Harper, Chief Executive of Open House Festival, said: “For over three decades the Open House Festival has made exploring London more open and accessible for tens of thousands of visitors every September. This year there’s a fantastically diverse array of open days and walking tours in the programme that anyone can book onto for free.
“From an ingenious new prototype housing block for artists designed by Apparata Architects in Barking and Dagenham, to the newly refurbished historic Crystal Palace subway in Bromley, there’s something for everyone, and every event in the Open House Festival is easily reachable by bike, foot or public transport.”