Google doodle celebrates 150 years of the London Underground

Search engine apes the Tube's famous multi-coloured map to spell out its name

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The Independent Online

Google has celebrated the 150th birthday of the London Underground with a doodle.

The search engine apes the Tube’s famous multi-coloured map to spell out its name, and even uses the real names and colours of Underground lines.

The London Underground opened in 1863, with the first journey taking place between Paddington and Farringdon on the Metropolitan Railway, which now forms part of the Circle and District Line.

All seven of the Tube’s original stations are still in use, although only Edgware Road and Baker Street retain their Victoria-era names.

Within a few months of opening, the Tube was regularly carrying 26,000 passengers a day, leading to the development of new lines, such as the Metropolitan District Railway, which had a fierce rivalry with the original Metropolitan Railway.

The two were connected in 1884 by the Inner Circle and a further 263 stations have been added to the London Underground over the last 150 years.

London Underground will recreate the historic first journey on Sunday, with a steam locomotive pulling a restored 1893 carriage along the line.

In 2012, an estimated 3.66 million people used the London Underground every weekday, with 3.23 million travelling at weekends.