We’re not sure if you’ve noticed, but it’s pretty warm out there right now. OK, let’s stop downplaying it: it is utterly, outrageously roasting in the UK right now, as the seemingly never-ending summer heatwave ramps it up into the 30s.
In fact, meteorologists are speculating that tomorrow (Friday) could see the UK’s all-time high temperature record broken - The Met Office has said “if conditions all come together” the record of 38.5C (101F), which was set in Kent in August 2003, could be beaten.
So, it’s officially bloody hot. But just what is it like on the London Underground, a place where, even in cooler times, you’re likely to end up gently cooking like a chicken? Well, unsurprisingly, it is utterly unbearable, with temperatures in excess of 40 degrees Celsius recorded yesterday - although TfL helpfully said that they’d be fixing the insane temperatures on the Central Line in 12 years’ time.
However, while the Central Line is - more than ever - an adequate approximation of the fires of hell into which we will all eventually be thrown - not all lines are quite as bad; in fact, some are potentially good places to actually escape the heat, given that they have some beautiful, beautiful air conditioning.
The good people at londonist.com have helpfully compiled a full list of exactly which sections of the Underground have been blessed with air con. And the routes that you really want to be travelling on if at all possible are:
-The Circle Line
-The District Line
-The Hammersmith & City Line
-The Metropolitan Line (all of which use ‘S-Stock’ trains)
-The London Overground (apart from lines out of Liverpool Street, or the Upminster-Romford line) - these are air-cooled rather than air-conditioned, but they do the job
-TfL Rail between Paddington and Hayes & Harlington
-TfL Rail between Liverpool Street and Shenfield (these use the new Crossrail trains)
-The newer trams in Croydon
-The ‘central core section’ of Thameslink
They’ve created a map of these sections, which you can view right here.
If only they hadn’t buggered up the Circle line by turning it into not-a-circle we could have all just ridden around on that for the next week or two. Thanks a bunch TfL.