The Royal Mail Underground is another important small
network. The tube does not represent the only tunnels that London sits on. These set of tunnels run 70 feet below
the surface between Whitechapel and
Paddington and they extend for 23 miles. The system was
used up until 2003 exclusively to deliver mail. At its peak it transported 4 million letters every
The problem of congestion in London
goes back a long time, much before the arrival of cars. Ideas and plans to go underground are not a new thing. At
the beginning not everyone was convinced that this was a good idea financially speaking, but in the end the first
line, which was vacuum driven, opened in
Royal Mail Underground has always been very unlucky and
this first line closed in 1874 due to unreasonable expenses, as it apparently reduced the journey of only
About twenty years later, along with
technology, came the idea of reopening the tunnels and to use electricity to move the small trains of mail. They
worked on it for seven years, till the Royal Mail decided once again in 1902, to abandon the project as they were
not so convinced of the advantages compared with the expenses.This first tunnel was eventually purchased by the Post Office 19 years later, but they only used it to pass telephone cables
It looks like at the head office they had
some mixed feelings about a Royal Mail underground system. The idea was brought up again in 1909, when a committee
was sent to Chicago and Berlin to learn form the success of two lines already in place.
Even though they were not convinced
(as usual), works for a new tunnel started in 1915.The excavation of this experimental section was completed in 1917, but
works stopped due to the war. For the meantime, this tunnel was used as shelter for the artworks of London
museums.It wasn’t until 1920
that works started again and it would take another seven years to complete the line. Trains run as planned
for a few years, till the Second World War. This time the tunnel was used as shelter for humans and bunk beds
The system managed to run smoothly
for half a century, till technology came along to destroyed it all. 1987 marks the year of a major modernization of
the line, with an entire set of new trains.
the timing was wrong, as internet and email begun to revolutionize the world.It wasn’t long before the Royal Mail Underground started loosing
money... big time.
At a point they were loosing in
excess of one million pounds per day and this brought to the inevitable and definitive closure of the Royal Mail
Underground in 2003.For more
information on the Royal Mail Underground, please see this article by the BBC.
The Secret Tunnels
It certainly doesn’t seem to be a
secret anymore, that there are several unknown tunnels under
London. A simple search on internet will give you much information. Many of these tunnels are part of the actual
tube that are no longer in use, but we are not interested in those. What I am talking about here is another set of
tunnels that nobody is supposed to know about. An extended network of tunnels that are used by the government and
the Royal Family.
started in war time, when invasions were a reality. In order to provide the Queen with an escape route, tunnels were build under Buckingham Palace leading to train
stations or tube lines. There are rumours that a tunnel connects Buckingham Palace to 10 Downing Street, to the Parliament
and to the Secret Intelligence Service building
What I can tell you is what I know,
because I’ve heard it from a reliable source: a friend of mine.When he was younger he went to work with his uncle, who was
a project manager for this company that operated inside government buildings.They were inside a building that had no street
entrance, only a fake lobby.I asked him how he got in and he would answer me: “I can’t tell you that” followed by a
He was clearly involved in top secret stuff and couldn’t spill too much. He did tell me that inside
this building, on the ground floor, there was a huge round platform that was a lift capable of holding a
large vehicle. They went down... a lot and when they reached the bottom, there was an underground two lane
highway with pedestrian corridors all along, that went all the way to Windsor Castle.
Now that I think of it, the Queen is
absolutely never seen on London roads. There are probably other tunnels to more than one airport and maybe even to
France. He told me that nobody could ever imagine the extension of this secret network.
The Royal Mail Underground is
absolutely nothing compared with the miles and miles of underground passages that most people will never know