Brompton Road
Brompton Road tube station side entrance on Cottage Place
Brompton Road is located in Central London
Brompton Road
Brompton Road
Location of Brompton Road in Central London
Local authorityKensington and Chelsea
Grid referenceTQ272791
Number of platforms2
Railway companies
Original companyGreat Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway
Key dates
15 December 1906Station opened
30 July 1934Station closed
Replaced byNone
Other information
WGS8451°29′49.6″N 0°10′8″W / 51.497111°N 0.16889°W / 51.497111; -0.16889
 London transport portal

Brompton Road is a disused station on the Piccadilly line of the London Underground, located between Knightsbridge and South Kensington stations.

It was closed in 1934, nearly 28 years after being opened by the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway company. During the Second World War it was used as the command centre of the 26th (London) Anti-Aircraft Brigade.[1] In 2014, the owner of the site, the Ministry of Defence, sold it to a Ukrainian businessman, Dmytro Firtash, who claimed an intention to convert it to residential use.[2]

London Transport Museum runs regular Zoom-hosted virtual tours of the station via its "Hidden London" programme; which explore its time as a Second World War bunker and reveal what it looks like today.[3]


Brompton Road was opened on 15 December 1906 by the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway (GNP&BR).[4] The station was located at the junction of Brompton Road and Cottage Place. Although it was conveniently situated for both the Brompton Oratory and the Victoria and Albert Museum, it saw little passenger usage and by October 1909 some services passed through without stopping.[5]

Brompton Road station on a 1912 Tube map

The station closed on 4 May 1926 due to the general strike and did not reopen until 4 October of that year with services initially only calling there on weekdays. Sunday services were restored on 2 January 1927.[5] As before, Brompton Road was little used, to the extent that two of its lifts were removed and relocated elsewhere and the ticket office was closed.[5]

When the adjacent Knightsbridge station was modernised with escalators replacing lifts, it was provided with a new southern entrance that was built closer to Brompton Road station, reducing its catchment area. When the new entrance for Knightsbridge opened on 30 July 1934, Brompton Road closed.[4]

Just prior to the outbreak of the Second World War, the street-level building together with the lift shafts and lower western passages were sold to the War Office for a sum of £22,000 (equivalent to £1.5 million in 2021) for use by the 26th (London) Anti-Aircraft Brigade of the 1st Anti-Aircraft Division. During the War, it was the Royal Artillery's anti-aircraft operations room for central London. This use was discontinued in the 1950s. It was subsequently used as the town headquarters (THQ) of the University of London Air Squadron, the University of London Royal Naval Unit and 46F (Kensington) Squadron Air Training Corps.

Station building

Brompton Road station on a 1915 map

Like the others on the GNP&BR, the station building was designed by Leslie Green. The surface building occupied an L-shaped site built on two adjacent sides of a public house which occupied the corner of Brompton Road and Cottage Place. The façades were of Green's standard red-glazed terracotta design with semi-circular arches at first floor level. The entrance and exits to the lifts were on Brompton Road with the Cottage Place elevation providing staff access. The Brompton Road elevation was demolished in 1972,[5] but the Cottage Place elevation remains, now partly incorporated into a larger building.

Although the platforms have long since been removed, their original location can be seen from passing trains by the brick walls that stand in their place. The original tiling remains on the tunnel walls, although soot and dirt now obscures them.

Proposals for reuse

Tiling inside Brompton Road station, 2011

In 2011, proposals from The Old London Underground Company were made suggesting the parts of the station which were used during World War II be opened to the public, with the remainder of the above-ground buildings becoming a restaurant, and the rest of the underground space being turned over to the London Fire Brigade Museum.[6][7][8]

In July 2013, the Ministry of Defence announced the site was for sale, with an expected price of about £20 million.[9] The MoD's property surveyor said specialist developers could adapt the 28,000 square feet (2,600 m2) site but stated "a lot of work was needed".[10] In May 2014, the site was sold for £53 million to Dmytro Firtash, a billionaire Ukrainian businessman who claimed an intention to convert it to residential use.[2] The property remained unused as of April 2023.[11]

In popular culture

A 1928 comedy play by Jevan Brandon-Thomas was about a woman who lived near Brompton Road and felt that life was passing her by just as the non-stopping trains were, and so it was titled Passing Brompton Road. The London production starring Marie Tempest ran for 174 performances. (For a 1931 film adaptation, the title was changed to Her Reputation.)[12][13][14]

Another play in 2008 used the station. Sailing By, by Anthony Chew, took place on the long-closed platform, where two people sit and talk while Death stalks them.[12][15]


  1. ^ Cooper, Nick (2014). London Underground at War. Amberley Books. ISBN 978-1-4456-2201-9.
  2. ^ a b "London's Brompton Road Tube station sold for £53m". BBC News. 28 February 2014. Retrieved 28 February 2014.
  3. ^ "Brompton Road virtual tour". London Transport Museum. Retrieved 10 February 2023.
  4. ^ a b Rose, Douglas (1999). The London Underground, A Diagrammatic History. Douglas Rose/Capital Transport. ISBN 1-85414-219-4.
  5. ^ a b c d Connor, J.E. (2001) [1999]. "Brompton Road". London's Disused Underground Stations. Capital Transport. p. 48. ISBN 1-85414-250-X.
  6. ^ "Tourist attraction plan for disused Tube stations". BBC. 7 September 2011. Archived from the original on 8 September 2011.
  7. ^ Spillane, Chris (8 September 2011). "London Entrepreneur Sees Gold Mine in Unused Subway Stations". Bloomberg. Archived from the original on 23 September 2011.
  8. ^ Bolton, Matt. "Reawakening the Underground". BBC Travel. BBC. Archived from the original on 12 November 2011.
  9. ^ Farmer, Ben (29 July 2013). "MoD to sell WWII Tube station command bunker". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 1 August 2013.
  10. ^ "London Underground: Brompton tube station up for sale". BBC News. 7 August 2013. Archived from the original on 18 February 2014.
  11. ^ Batty, David; McIntyre, Niamh; Pegg, David; Asthana, Anushka (1 August 2017). "Names of wealthy empty-home owners in Grenfell borough revealed". The Guardian.
  12. ^ a b Davies, Adrian. "Brompton Road: Once upon a time..." Archived from the original on 24 February 2011.
  13. ^ Connor, J.E. (October 1997). "Recalling Brompton Road" (PDF). The London Railway Record. 1 (13). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2 March 2011.
  14. ^ "Her Reputation (1931)". IMDb. Archived from the original on 9 March 2005.
  15. ^ "Archive 2008". The Byfleet Players. Archived from the original on 16 May 2011.
Preceding station London Underground Following station
Former Route
South Kensington Piccadilly line