Bank Station After a Direct Hit in January 1941

Reproduced with kind permission of London's Transport Museum.

Could this bomb site have been known as "Underground Nought"? A total of fifty-six people were killed by this bomb, not comparable to the enormity of the 9/11 disaster but the sight of such devastation, one can't help bringing it to mind.

Today the Bank-Monument Complex is a conglomeration of five stations, which consists of three ticket-halls, six lifts, ten platforms, fifteen escalators and two 300-ft moving walkway ( the first installed in 1960) making it one of the largest and most complex subterranean railway stations in the world, (according to Richard Griffin).

You can find a colour cutaway maps of the complex and a simpler Bank-Monument diagram that shows clearly this concourse, on a web site constructed by John Rowland.

When Bank station was constructed for The Central London Railway, opened in 1900 and the Waterloo and City Line completed two years earlier, Monument station for the (Inner) Circle line had already been completed in 1884, situated at the other end of King William Street, approximately 100 yds away.

In the same year, 1900, the City and South London Railway (Later to become the Northern Line) closed its terminating station in King William Street, reconstructed its lines and built a new station in between Monument and Bank. To save the cost of expensive property in prime city area, the station and lift-shafts were cut beneath St. Mary Woolnoth Church and the crypt was used to build the booking hall; the dead were evacuated to Ilford in 1900. The entrance to the crypt, to the left of the church in Lombard Street, was used as access to the station. The church was to subsequently make a claim of over a quarter of a million pounds (at 1900s value!) as compensation for structural damage to its building. This was later commuted to 170,000 after civil action went all the way to the House of Lords.

So what is now referred to as the Bank-Monument complex, started life as three separate stations. An escalator link, between Bank and Monument, was built and is introduced for the first time on the 1934 map (this was depicted in various ways, some bizarrely, on the underground maps until the early 90s). Following its introduction, all Monument station signs carried the suffix "for Bank".

The terminal for the Docklands Light Railway's was built beneath the Northern Line platforms in 1991 and it was then that the whole complex became known unofficially as the Bank-Monument complex.

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