You can probably see trains, but the Broad Street Rail Station officially closed its doors in 1986, around the time many hardy East London young artists were busy being born.
While the station proper was quickly transformed into an office and shopping complex, the Broad Street Rail Viaduct remained derelict for a little longer, becoming overgrown with trees and wildlife. But, in April 2007, Village Underground was born: a self-styled home for the cultural and creative minds of East London, now best known to the area’s denizens as an eclectic venue for music, theatre, club nights, art and everything in between.
The building itself, a renovated turn-of-the-century warehouse, is representative of the evolution of the East End over the last 100 years from a smoke-filled hothouse of industry to the ultimate destination and living quarters of the city’s oddball arts and entertainment aficionados. Ever aware of their history, they’ve turned the top floor into an incredible homage to the site’s previous use, with four Jubilee-line tube carriages atop a living roof, converted into studio workspaces to transport the diversely creative souls who make up the Village Underground community.
Know Before You Go
The nearest underground stations are Liverpool Street and Old Street, with Shoreditch High Street station around the corner. The trains can be seen on Holywell Lane, opposite Citizen M hotel. There is level access and they can be seen at any time of day.