District line

District line

The District line is a line of the London Underground, coloured green on the Tube map. It is a "sub-surface" line, running through the central area in shallow cut-and-cover tunnels. It is the busiest of the sub-surface lines and the fourth busiest overall on the Underground network. Out of the 60 stations served, 25 are underground.


The District line has a long history. It was built by the Metropolitan District Railway and opened in stages from 1868. The MDR was later bought by Charles Yerkes, forming part of the "Underground" group until it was nationalised in the 1930s. It had branches to Uxbridge and Hounslow West, but both are now operated by the Piccadilly line. Eastbound services ran as far as the seaside town of Southend in Essex from 1 June 1910 and to Shoeburyness from 1911, until 30 September 1939. Between 1 March 1883 and 30 September 1885 the line also served stations from Ealing Broadway to Windsor, running on the Great Western Mainline.


Most of the District line's services use sub-surface D stock, although the Wimbledon to Edgware Road service uses C stock, due to shorter platform lengths between High Street Kensington and Edgware Road. The D stock has been refurbished, having received the standard Underground livery of red, white and blue, having replaced the previous unpainted aluminium finish which is prone to damage by graffiti vandals. The stock also received a complete interior refurbishment and was fitted with CCTV and passenger information displays. The trains are maintained at Ealing Common Depot and Upminster Depot.

Last unrefurbished train

A D stock (unit 7115) was taken out of service to be refurbished on 15 February 2008. Its run may have extended into the weekend, but due to planned weekend engineering works it was taken out on Friday at the end of operations. It was the very last unrefurbished train on the London Underground.


The TFL line diagram is available online.


In order from west to east

Richmond branch

Ealing branch

The Richmond and Ealing branches join just west of Turnham Green.

Wimbledon branch

Kensington (Olympia) branch

The Kensington (Olympia) branch joins the main line west of Earl's Court, and trains from it normally run to High Street Kensington.

The Wimbledon branch joins the main line west of Earl's Court.

Main line

Edgware Road branch

The Edgware Road branch diverges from the main line east of Earl's Court.

Current service pattern

The following off-peak service pattern currently runs on the District line

  • 6 tph Ealing Broadway - Tower Hill
  • 6 tph Richmond - Upminster
  • 6 tph Wimbledon - Upminster
  • 6 tph Wimbledon - Edgware Road
  • 4 tph Kensington (Olympia) - High Street Kensington

(tph=trains per hour)

The only line to not have an interchange with the District Line is the Metropolitan Line, though they may have previously before much of the Metropolitan Line was taken over by the Circle and Hammersmith and City lines.


c2c also serves Upminster, Barking, West Ham and Fenchurch Street (for Tower Hill). Tickets are interavailable between the two operators with Oyster Cards (including pay as you go) accepted on this part of c2c's route. South West Trains services occasionally operate on the Wimbledon Branch between East Putney and Wimbledon, often due to engineering works or problems on the mainline, although trains do not stop at any of the intermediate stations.

In popular culture

External links

West: Crossings of the River Thames East:
Kew Bridge Richmond branch,
between Gunnersbury
and Kew Gardens
Chiswick Bridge
Putney Bridge Wimbledon branch,
between Putney Bridge
and East Putney
Wandsworth Bridge

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