Station to Station (Part 2)

Continuing with the toponyms while travelling the Northern Line eastern section.

Stockwell: Recorded as Stokewell in 1188. The name can be interpreted as “The stream with a footbridge consisting of a tree trunk” from the Old English Stock (trunk) and Wella (Stream) Up until the 1860s Stockwell was still a small rural village. The station opened 18th December 1890

Oval: The station takes it’s name from the shape of the famous cricket ground nearby, home of Surrey County Cricket Club. The ground predates the Station by some 45 years. Prior to construction the name Kennington Oval was considered, but when the station was officially opened on the 18th December 1890 it was known as Oval.

Kennington: In the Doomsday Book of 1068 the area is known as Chenintune, derived from a Saxon named Cena and the Old English Tun (Farm), the farm inhabited by Cena. By 1275 the area is known as Kenigton. The name New Street was the favourite proposal for the station, but by the time the station opened on 18th December 1890, Kennington had been adopted.

Elephant & Castle: Takes it name from the old Tavern that once stood on the site of the 16th century Newington Theatre. The tavern had a model of an Elephant and a Castle above its front door. When the tavern was demolished in 1959, the model was moved to a nearby shopping centre. There is a theory that the name is a corruption of Infanta of Castilla, possibly Henry VIII’s first wife Catherine of Aragon, but this remains unproven. The station opened on the 18th December 1890.

Borough: The station is situated in Borough High street, which was a Roman road that approached the crossing point on the River Thames where London Bridge now stands. The Old English Burh denotes “a fortified place“. In the middle ages the name referred to a town or area which had local government, and the name has been inducted into everyday modern usage to mean the same. The station opened on the 18th December 1890.

London Bridge: Situated next to the bridge itself, the station opened on the 25th February 1900. At the time the bridge was the Victorian stone arched structure built in 1832 that in 1971 was shipped to Lake Havasu City in Arizona.

Published by endean0

Hi, I'm Steve, a London tour guide and owner of A London Miscellany Tours, a guided walking tour company who specialise in small number tours of the greatest city in the world!

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