Category Archives: General

Bryan Avery – an appreciation by Sam Mullins, Director of London Transport Museum

Bryan Avery, late architect of the new museum

I am sad to report on the death of architect Bryan Avery, who led the design team for the extension and refurbishment of the Museum at Covent Garden which was launched in November 2007. We chose Bryan  because of his skillful use of awkward space under Waterloo Bridge, for the creation of the Museum of the Moving Image in 1988 (which closed in 1999), for the glazed exterior of the IMAX at Waterloo (1999) and the brilliant performance and support spaces at RADA (2000).

A primary consideration for London Transport Museum was a new glazed screen entrance to give the Museum a light and attractive face onto the bustling east piazza of Covent Garden.  Our brief also included a new basement space now known as the Cubic Theatre, a comfortable 120 seat space for lectures, corporate hire, music and film, with great acoustics and moquette fabric covered seating. The third major element was to introduce an independently supported mezzanine floor high in the west transept of the grade two listed Flower Market building of 1871, with access by stairs and lifts at both ends. The fourth element was the improvement of the historic building’s performance as a Museum space, controlling light levels and heat gain and loss from what is essentially a cast iron greenhouse. Over-cladding, louvring and the largest installation of solar panels on a listed building to supplement the reinstatement of natural ventilation was deftly incorporated into the Avery design, with specialist input from Max Fordham.

Bryan worked on our scheme from 2001 to enable a successful application to the Heritage Lottery Fund. We worked intensely together to incorporate our vision of the new Museum and its narrative of transport shaping London, past, present and future, into the wonderfully located Flower Market. The tight space within demanded that every square foot worked for that vision. Bryan’s questioning of visitor flow and accessibility led to an optimal final design that has served the Museum very well since 2007, with visitor numbers rising from 210,000 to 400,000, and facilities for evening events, school visits, retail and cafe, promoting support from Transport for London,  funders, stakeholders and visitors. Bryan’s work has proved crucial to the Museum’s success, working within a range of constraints to create colour, light and movement within a historic structure.

The Museum’s former Assistant Director, Systems and Infrastructure, Rob Lansdown reminded me of how “when you talked to Bryan about space or form he was driven to pull out one of his blank index cards and a classic black Pentel Sign fibre-tipped pen (beloved of architects since the 1960s) and sketch his understanding for explanation and later reference”. His sketches of buildings and ideas were wonderfully concise and I hope plans for their exhibition and publication come to fruition.

Bryan remained a close friend of the Museum and had been consulted on our new Cafe extension project shortly before his death. We understand there is to be a memorial event in October.

https://www.theguardian.com/artanddesign/2017/jul/06/bryan-avery-obituary

https://www.architectsjournal.co.uk/news/tributes-paid-to-thinking-mans-architect-bryan-avery-1944-2017/10021390.article

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Khadija Saye 1992 – 2017

khadija_1Two weeks ago the Learning team at London Transport Museum were waking up to the news of the fire in Grenfell Tower, and the realisation that one of our team lived in the tower and was now missing.

Khadija Saye joined the team in August 2016 as a Young Freelancer, a year-long post that offers support, training and paid opportunities for young people. The scheme aims to enable them to gain the knowledge, skills, and experience required for roles in art and cultural sectors. This is part of a wider programme of work with young Londoner’s funded by Arts Council England.

In our reflective practice sessions, Khadija talked with us about her life-journey, the challenges she faced, her art and her desire to work with and help people. Khadija worked on many projects in our Learning and Public Programmes teams, including using her amazing photography skills, giving tours, delivering events for families, supporting our pre-employment courses and engaging and supporting young people to become part of our apprentice programme. Khadija wanted to continuously learn, grow and develop and the paid opportunity allowed her to support the photography she was so talented and passionate about.

Khadija was all about people: whether assisting frantic set-up for a workshop, or guiding a participant on a course, caring for the elderly, or talking to a colleague struggling with work, Khadija was never short of time to listen. On meeting Khadija for the first time, her kindness shone through.  Extremely humble to the point where her discussion about being chosen to display work at the Venice Biennale came across, at first, as a small admin project!

khadija_2

Dhikshana, Khadija’s line manager

The last time I saw Khadija was just before she left for Venice, mapping her journey so far as part of a session reflecting as a Young Freelancer.  Charting worries, and things she needed to plan for, control and if possible contain; we ended knowing she would have many tales to tell us from Venice, how she took all these challenges head on and the great time she would have.

She would return and we would be in the final months of her time with us, seeing how far she came, having yet another string to her bow, and more people to add to her journey.  Khadija was returning to work alongside her peers to bring in our next set of Young Freelancers, sharing her journey and supporting and inspiring another group of young people. 

As I said goodbye to Khadija that day, I told her not to forget me when she reached the top and make sure I had VIP tickets to her exhibitions. She promised and with a naughty chuckle, she said she would make sure there was plenty of tea and cake for me.

Thank you, Khadija for being part of our team. We are so proud to have worked with you, we hope you learnt from us as much as we learnt from you.

Learning team
London Transport Museum

Neon tube roundels at Southwark

To coincide with the opening of the new Tate Modern extension on 17 June, Art on the Underground and Tate Modern commissioned artist Michael Craig-Martin to design a “reimagined” London Underground roundel at Southwark station.

The roundel is pretty funky: I skipped down there this morning and quite a number of commuters on the platforms seemed to notice that something wasn’t as per normal, although your correspondent was (unsurprisingly) the only one taking photographs and that act seemed to cause more interest than the roundel itself. It is, however, only temporary: it will be taken down and replaced by the standard Southwark station roundels at the end of this weekend.

What makes this roundel interesting is its rarity: whilst there are several replicated along the platform walls, experimenting with the icon that is the London Underground roundel is not something that is sanctioned often. Since introduction in 1908 (and there is a full history of its design story here) there have been design tweaks in its gradual evolution, but it’s rare to find vastly different variations, especially at platform level.

I’ve dug out a few that I’ve seen: if you know of other intriguing ones, do get in touch with the team on Facebook or Twitter.

Experimental tube roundel at Oxford Circus on the Victoria Line, 1972.
An experimental version of an illuminated station name sign for Oxford Circus on the Victoria Line. The central area of the roundel is coloured yellow in this version, and was not taken forward into further production. (Unknown photographer, 1972 Image no: 600-15-6 Inventory no: 2002/910)

 

Early solid disc roundel, Covent Garden station
Early solid disc roundel, Covent Garden station (Photographed by Hugh Robertson, 2000 Location: Westminster WC2 Image no: 600-15-5 Inventory no: 2002/17777)
Moorgate Metropolitan Railway Tube Station Roundel
From mid-1914, the Metropolitan Railway introduced its own version of the Underground roundel. This originally appeared as a blue station name plate across a red diamond. This replica is one of several installed at Moorgate for the “Tube 150” celebrations in 2013. (Picture by Tim Dunn).
New Tate Modern tube roundels along Southwark station platforms.
New Tate Modern tube roundels along Southwark station platforms. (Photo by Tim Dunn on 17th June 2016)
New extension of the Tate Modern. Pic: Tim Dunn
The reason for the neon-bright sign is the new extension of the Tate Modern. Designed by architects Herzog & de Meuron, it is approximately 15 minutes’ walk from Southwark tube station. Picture by Tim Dunn, May 2016.

Congratulations! You have unlocked the Museum…

Tim Dunn at Acton Depot

Many of the best ideas, and often many of the worst, start in a pub. Thus it was a surprise to me that following a Friday evening conversation in London Transport Museum’s Upper Deck cafe bar, the team at this organisation agreed to give me access to some of its many assets, including objects, staff, storage facilities, events ­– and even disused Tube stations.

Why did I ask for access? Well:

  1. I like interesting things, particularly if they’re about:
    (a) London or
    (b) Transport, especially old tube trains (spoiler: I do like trains. Quite a lot.)
    (c) Historic design
  2. I enjoy discovering the stories behind interesting things

The opportunity here is vast, because London Transport Museum has so much stuff. Incredible, remarkable, interesting stuff. It has steam locomotives that careered about underground and it has whole electric tube trains which enabled suburbia; it has trams that surfed London’s streets and it has buses that plied the Chiltern Hills. It has Tube station roundels and tube maps, failed experimental technology and staff uniforms of fashions long past, engineering diagrams and trolleybus bits, architectural models and WW2 shelter signs, and literally millions of records, paintings, tickets and photographs. Oh, and then there’s everything that’s stored at Acton Depot and isn’t listed online.

Crumbs.

But London Transport Museum isn’t just a collection of stuff: it’s a collection of objects that tells us stories. Stories about who we were, what we are, what London is, and where we might be going.

Over the coming months I’ll be writing about some of the interesting stories that I find whilst rummaging around in that vast collection, visiting a site or talking to a person much cleverer than me. I’m doing that because I’d like you to be able to get to see things that are normally hidden away, in a box, on a platform, in an archive box or behind a slightly odd search query, and also because I’m an over-enthusiastic, nosy amateur historian and transport nerd who enjoys finding weird things. It is time for us to go exploring.

To get me started, later this week I’ll be visiting the launch of the Museum’s Designology exhibition. The last time your correspondent went to a museum launch I accidentally spilled a drink over the great-great-grandson of the builder of one of the world’s oldest railway locomotives, so it’s quite possible that this is both my first and my last blog for the Museum. [There is probably concern in the Press Office now].

Thanks for reading; I hope you enjoy our occasional ride and mixed metaphor together through the Museum’s collection as much as I probably will.

See you soon!

Tim Dunn.

 

Museum Week: Monday Theme – Day in the Life

It’s Monday – traditionally the most miserable day of the working week – when that long journey toward the weekend has begun all over again. Given that, it might not seem like the best day to be asking our staff some probing questions about their job – but it’s #MuseumWeek and today we’re looking at ‘Day in the Life’ so what better way than finding out what our staff get up to, from breakfast bagel to bedtime! (Complete with their very own #MuseumSelfies)

https://twitter.com/ltmuseum #MuseumWeek #DayintheLife

Me Sau-Fun Lyndsey Sam Wendy Saskia hannah Julie Eli Caroline Marilyn memet Noel helena2 Stuart Siobhan Harry Ed


Me

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Kirsten Riley and I’m the Web and Social Media Manager here at the Museum

How does your day start?
Around 6:30am. My Boxer dog wakes me up to be fed (I don’t need an alarm!) I have an espresso before heading out the door about 8am.

How do you get into work?
I live in the South-East in Lewisham so I get in via the Overground. Never get tired of the view from Waterloo Bridge!

Breakfast?
Porridge (even in Summer!)

What does a typical day look like?
I get in and have breakfast at my desk while I check email and open up our social media channels – Facebook, Twitter etc – and check for updates and questions. I then plan in my tasks for that day in between various meetings. Normally tasks include optimising images, updating web content, proofing marketing text, collating stats, and updating our various social media sites with content – messages and blog posts. At lunchtime I usually head to the gym so I can unwind (and not spend money in Covent Garden!)

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Being Omni-present. I have two computer screens as I have to watch social media streams while doing my other work so I am always jumping from task to task. It can feel a little maniacal. Right now we’re also developing our new website (due to launch in mid-April) so I have been managing this project while carrying out my business-as-usual role.

What do you love most about your work?
The fact that I get to talk directly to our fans and followers on Social Media (and the people I work with are immense!)

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I get home at around 7:30pm and take the dog out a walk  – my partner works shifts so the dog isn’t left alone all day! I then make some dinner before kicking back to watch some TV or read a book – right now I’m reading The Etymologicon by Mark Forsyth. I get to bed about midnight (after checking Facebook and Twitter one last time!)


Sau-Fun

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
Sau-Fun Mo, Head of Design

How does your day start?
Alarm goes off at 5.30am, and once I’ve got myself ready, I put the supper on the automatic cooker ready for the children as soon as they’re back home in the evening.

How do you get into work?
The 6.50 train into Waterloo which tends to be quite busy

Breakfast?
Rarely

What does a typical day look like?
Back to back meetings and creatively directing anything from 20 to 50+ design projects all on the go at the same time. Best moments are when I am doing hands on design.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Time management – ensuring that I am available to all departments as well as my design team.

What do you love most about your work?
Being the creative lead on all design projects and making everything gorgeous

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
By spending precious time with my hubby and children, and OK, maybe a cheeky glass of wine too 😉


Lyndsey

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Lyndsey Mclean and I organise public events at the Museum.

How does your day start?
After repeatedly hitting the snooze button on my alarm, I get up around 7.30am, and listen to the Today programme on Radio 4  and eat my breakfast.

How do you get into work?
I walk and take the bus.

Breakfast?
Absolutely! I love breakfast. I like a poached egg on toast, the more free range the better for a lovely deep orange yolk.

What does a typical day look like?
I get into work around 10am and check my emails, and the day and week ahead. I work out what I need to do for upcoming meetings as well as any on-going things on my to do list. The rest of the day is spent planning for events ahead – at the moment I am finalising the details of our next Friday Late for the opening of our new exhibition  on 16 May. So I am looking for suppliers and performers, and talking to them about what I want  them to do, as well as updating the information available about the event, and ensuring that I don’t go over budget. I am also responsible for the other events in 2014, so I spend time finalising the details of these, and attending meetings to discuss the overall programme of events, and how it is shaping up, as well as how it might contribute to other aspects of the museum

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Thinking about what will appeal to our audience, making sure it is affordable, and that it will generate enough ticket sales to pay for itself.

What do you love most about your work?
Getting to visit places that the public aren’t usually allowed, and  working out how to make them accessible. Also, the end of successful event is very satisfying.  

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I do an evening drawing class, which is great for not thinking about work, or I go for a drink with friends.


Sam

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Sam Clift and I’m the Volunteer Coordinator at the Museum.

How does your day start?
Alarm goes off at 6am (usually woken up at 5.30am by the radiators rattling with the heating kicking in), get washed and packed lunch ready to be out of the door by 7am.

How do you get into work?
A steady walk (or powerwalk if I’m running late) to Sutton station, jumping on the Southern train to London Bridge at 7.20am and a quick switch onto the South Eastern to Charing Cross.

Breakfast?
Porridge or bran flakes with lots of mixed berries thrown in.

What does a typical day look like?
Get to work by 8.30am, so time for a cup of tea and a chance to chill before the day begins at 9am. I switch my computer on and go through my mountain of emails and check my calendar, then start to prioritise my time for the day by putting a checklist together (which I really, really, really try and stick to but it never happens). I usually have one or two volunteers in the office, so they arrive around 9ish and I spend time chatting to them and discussing their work for the day before they get started. Then I get going with my to do list, which usually comprises of following up on event information/updates, forward planning for the week ahead, responding to email/voicemail enquiries (both from existing/potential volunteers. I head out for my lunch sometime between 12-1pm, when I usually have a walk around and find an interesting subject to draw (I’m working on a person drawing project at the moment). Then I spend the afternoon speaking to lots of staff and volunteers about events and volunteer requirements for various projects.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Its naturally a very sociable job, as I have to work with staff across all departments of the museum and manage 160+ volunteers. Time management is always a huge challenge, and making conversations constructive and relevant to the needs of the museum (whilst staying light hearted and sociable) has become a key part of my day to day.

What do you love most about your work?
Working with so many interesting and passionate people. I love the fact that our volunteers are generally so accommodating and relaxed in their manner, as it’s a breath of fresh air and reminds me why I love this job!

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
Seeing my little daughter when I get home, she always makes me smile.


Wendy

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
Wendy Neville – I’m Head of Communications at the Museum

How does your day start?
Chaotically usually. Check work emails, grab papers for meetings, get ready, get train, get to work.

How do you get into work?
Overground to Charing Cross station

Breakfast?
Sometimes. Smoked salmon and cream cheese bagel if I do have it.

What does a typical day look like?
Back-to-back meetings; writing copy, checking copy and making things happen.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Managing so many priorities. Lots of deadlines and lots of people from in and outside the Museum needing attention and feedback.

What do you love most about your work?
I love the fact that we can be so creative with our collections. Yes, we are a Museum of transport so we’re big on buses and trains. But we use that to tell a much bigger story about London and design.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I go shopping. 😉


Saskia

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Saskia Webster-Zazzi and I’m the Venue Sales and Events Executive at the Museum

How does your day start?
With a piecing horn alarm from my iPhone at 7:15 followed by the snooze alarm at 7:35

How do you get into work?
Nice stroll to the tube station with a quick journey on the Victoria and Piccadilly lines

Breakfast?
On a treat days its Starbucks coffee and a bircher. Normal days I opt for Weetabix

What does a typical day look like?
Get in have my breakfast and start reading my emails the phone is usually buzzing and I may have a number of site visits during the day also.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Just making sure I remember everything, all clients have different requirements and needs and I just want to ensure I don’t let anything slip

What do you love most about your work?
A live event- seeing all the planning come to life and watching the client and their guests enjoy all the facilities of this great museum

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
A packet of Revels on the sofa with a channel four documentary


hannah

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Hannah Steele and I’m an Apprentice on the Young People’s Programme.

How does your day start?
My day is supposed to start at 6:30ish… I don’t allow myself to hit the snooze for more than 15 minutes

How do you get into work?
I live on the border of Essex, so it’s a 25 minutes train journey to Liverpool Street, Then about 20 minutes from there.

Breakfast?
I’m going through a juicing phase at the moment, so it’s normally a bright orange or green juice… nice and healthy; followed by biscuits or crisps… not so healthy, I like to think they balance each other out.

What does a typical day look like?
I get in and check my emails. I then go through the days tasks with Eli: another apprentice, we decide who’s going to take on what and which tasks we’ll handle together. At the moment we’re planning a project; taking on young volunteers to curate two new handling trollies for the museum, so a lot of the work we’re doing is focussed on recruiting the young people. At lunchtime I like to get out for some fresh London air.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Letting go of some ideas after a brainstorm as sometimes we have to let go of some really great ones; they can be quite outlandish.

What do you love most about your work?
I love working with other young people, it’s easy to get a lot done as everyone has great ideas to throw around; we manage to have crazy brainstorming sessions but end up with something succinct and creative. I’m really looking forward to getting the young volunteers on board and mapping how they develop through the process. I’m on the wrong end of the young person spectrum, so it’s cool to be with people that remind me that I’m still just beginning life.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
Two days a week I lurk around after work and wait for my dance classes to start at Pineapple, handy that it’s round the corner. On other days it’s home and films or out with friends, I often sneak a cheeky shopping excursion in too.


Julie

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
Julie Lynn, Venue Sales and Marketing Manager

How does your day start?
Usually my 5 year old wakes me up dressed in a superhero outfit, which I have to prise off him and change for his school uniform

How do you get into work?
I walk to school to drop the superhero off then get a train from Three Bridges to Waterloo.

Breakfast?
It used to be sausage buttie but I’ve gone all health conscious at the moment and so as from 4 weeks ago it’s been a banana and Orange Juice…

What does a typical day look like?
Emails, voicemails from clients who are hiring the venue for special events, marketing spend and budgets, spread sheets galore (its year end just now)

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Year end! Juggling full time job with parenting and 3 hour commute.

What do you love most about your work?
Definitely the people I work with but also getting to meet so many people with interesting ideas for their events in our space and helping make it happen for them

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
Sleep zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz


Eli

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
I’m Eli Bligh-Briggs and I am one of the Young People’s Programme Apprentices

How does your day start?
Waking up to ‘Wake Up’ (Rage against the Machine) and my dog, Ellie – bowties, braces, pocket watch I’m ready to go!

How do you get into work?
I stroll to the train station and walk further down the platform in the hope of getting a seat in a luggage area on the ever crowded Orpington-Charing Cross line!

Breakfast?
Today included Roundel Birthday cake, dolly mixture birthday cake and Cheerios at my desk in wonderful breakfast company 😉

What does a typical day look like?
Busy, fun and most of all stupidly exciting with my amazing colleagues and Hannah, the other YPP apprentice. We are working on a Young volunteer project at the moment, as well as curating a new display case. Hannah and myself take lunch usually in Actors Church Gardens as the weather is beautiful. We are also about to launch a new young volunteers project. Later today we have a meeting regarding the Carnival Late Event which sounds super exciting!

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
My biggest challenge is my own confidence, but the training and HUGE amount of support here at LTM is crazy and it is growing day by day. ALSO trying not to eat cake is one of the most challenging things ever working here, I LOVE cake and there is ALWAYS cake!

What do you love most about your work?
I love why we are doing what we do, how we are doing it and how many doors it is opening and barriers it’s smashing down. I love the people I work with. And of course I LOVE MUSEUMS!

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
On the train I check my project blogs, feeds and twitters, write/research for my paper and cuddle in front of the fire with Ellie


Caroline

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Caroline MacVay and I work at the Museum as a Curator

How does your day start?
To get to my desk I have to climb four flights of stairs, which wakes me up and saves on Gym membership.

How do you get into work?
In the morning I walk to Crystal Palace station, where I catch the train into London Bridge and then on to Charing Cross.

Breakfast?
Breakfast is often a banana, which I grab on my way out of the door and eat on the way in.

What does a typical day look like?
Typical days don’t seem to happen in this job, which is what I love about it. Today I am working at the Museum in Covent Garden. I will be answering enquiries about the collection, working with the Museum’s Apprentices and writing exhibition text for a new display.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
The most challenging and pleasurable part of my job is to keep learning about London Transport and to find new ways to show off the London Transport Museum’s amazing collection.

What do you love most about your work?
I love taking groups around the poster and art store at the museum’s depot in Acton. Meeting new people is fun and you get to delight and amaze them with the collection. It’s also a great opportunity to learn new things from other enthusiasts.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I relax when I get home by watching really good or really bad TV, depending on how stressful the day has been.


Marilyn

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Marilyn Greene and I am one of the Public Programme Managers at the London Transport Museum

How does your day start?
I am usually woken up early by the light streaming in to my room but try to get back to sleep until about 7.30

How do you get into work?
Bus and tube or walk and tube if the weather is good.

Breakfast?
Coffee and two slices of toast normally with natural peanut butter or Marmite on

What does a typical day look like?
I have another coffee when I get to work and then I check e mails and my diary.  I organise events for adults so I am researching suitable activities often on line, researching images, timetabling events and liaising with event providers including curators and sometimes volunteers and with the Marketing and Operation teams about the content, advertising and the set- up of events.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Some of the work involves working on risk assessments for off-site events where nothing is straight forward.

What do you love most about your work?
The feedback from happy customers who have enjoyed the event and activities we have organised.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I’m often rushing to other meetings in my local community but otherwise I like to make sure I cook a quick meal and watch selected TV programmes and/ or talk to friends on the phone. (I don’t normally get to sleep before 12.30!)


memet

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Memet Bunyan and I am Retail Manager at the Museum.

How does your day start?
My 4 years old daughter is my alarm clock: without an exception, she always wakes up at around 6am!

How do you get into work?
W7 and then Piccadilly line from Finsbury Park

Breakfast?
School run dictates this. If I am lucky, some marmite on toast and an unfinished cup of tea.

What does a typical day look like?
My normal day starts with the previous days’ stats and then I go through my emails, then I make my way down to the shop floor.

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Finding the killer product to sell in the shop!

What do you love most about your work?
Product development and numbers: I love numbers!

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
Unwinding: what’s that??


Noel

Who are you and do at the Museum?
Noel Coleman, Im the ICT Projects Manager at the Museum.

How does your day start?
It starts around 5:20am, train at 6:20 then exercise in a park near work starting at 7:30am for 45 minutes.

How do you get into work?
I live in South East London and get a national rail network train in to Charing Cross.

Breakfast?
Typically porridge, fruit and a protein shake

What does a typical day look like?
I get to work, having checked my emails on the way in. I line up which tasks need to be completed today. This generally involves lots of meetings, discussions and testing. I hit the gym at lunch time then get back to whatever tasks I’ve set for the day.

What’ the most challenging part of your job?
Adjusting to new technologies very rapidly, over the past few years and the advent of cloud computing technology and how it’s used moves significantly more rapidly than I’ve ever experienced.

What do you love most about your work?
For a local authority museum we’re considered pretty cutting edge technology wise. We’re just about to move all of our desktops to virtual desktop platform, I gather we’re one of the first museums in the country to do this.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I get in around 7-8pm and watch a few episodes of whatever TV program I’m currently watching, currently Game of Thrones.


helena2

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
I’m Helena Callow and I am one of the Youth Travel Ambassador Coordinators based at the museum (the noisy lot on the 4th floor).  I cover the whole of south east London, which includes 8 boroughs and 25 schools.

How does your day start?
Wake up at around 6:30am, eat breakfast, shower and normally end up running to the station because I leave too late, literally leaving 2 minutes earlier would make such a difference

How do you get into work?
Depending where I am first thing, I would usually get the train to the office, but I often bus it if I’m at a school.

Breakfast?
Porridge and a cup of tea…same every day, just change the flavour of the porridge

What does a typical day look like?
It really depends where I am. If I am office bound I struggle all the way up to the 4th floor and then recover for a few minutes. I get the lap top out go through my emails and then do all my follow up work for each of my schools.  However the majority of the time I am travelling around south east London visiting the YTA students in each of my schools, running workshops and facilitating them through the project.  In between schools, if I am too far away from the office, I find myself setting up my own mini office in a Starbucks (other coffee shops are available) somewhere. In this job I am always on the go, but I love it!

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
The constant travelling and dealing with so many different people – from students, to teachers, to borough officers to my own colleagues.  It can get very confusing at times juggling all the different projects.

What do you love most about your work?
Working with young people and being about to see them grow with confidence throughout the project.  I get to work with so many different schools giving me a wide spectrum of young people to work with.  I love that I am not office bound all the time.  Of course, my colleagues are great too J

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I get home at around 6:50pm, have some dinner and watch TV.  Most people may think having caffeine before bed is silly, but I need my 9:30pm cup of tea to unwind.


Stuart

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
I’m Stuart Umbo, I’m the Schools and Families Officer. I manage the events for schools and families

How does your day start?
With great difficulty. The hardest thing I have to do all day is claw myself out of bed

How do you get into work?
Public transport of course! I work for London Transport Museum! 91 bus followed by a short ride on the Piccadilly Line.

Breakfast?
Canned fruit at my desk. Minimal preparation. Maximum vitamins

What does a typical day look like?
A strong coffee and breakfast at my desk whilst I reply to emails. No one day is like the next in my job. It might be checking in with our workshop developers to see how they’re getting on with producing the next event for the school holidays, developing resources for visitors with special educational needs or helping write exhibits for our latest exhibition

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Time! There’s just not enough of it

What do you love most about your work?
I love London. And I get to discover something new about it every day. Working with the LT Museum’s collection is a real honour.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
Depends on what type of day I’ve had. Occasionally I might take out some frustrations on the squash court. But more often I can be found frequenting one of the pubs of North London


Siobhan

Who are you and do at the Museum?
My name is Siobhan Ion and I am the Marketing and PR Executive.

How does your day start?
My alarm usually wakes me at about 8am. It usually takes me a couple of attempts to get me up though. I’m definitely more of a night owl!

How do you get into work?
I jump on the Piccadilly line in from Finsbury Park which generally allows me to have a bit of time to read one the many books I have on rotation.

Breakfast?
I eat breakfast at my desk – muesli, yogurt and fruit. That is usually done around 11am after I have got into the swing of things for the day.

What does a typical day look like?
Every day is different here – I spend my days doing things such as writing and editing copy, working on the e-newsletter, making and answering advertising enquiries, sending images, talking to media, and going to various meetings – the list is endless.

What’ the most challenging part of your job?
Keeping track of everything. With so many things going on I have so many lists!

What do you love most about your work?
LTM is such a dynamic place that there is always something new and fun happening.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I try and get to a dance class or the gym after work then will usually catch up with friends, cook dinner, do a bit of reading and then fall into bed around midnight.


Harry

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
My name is Harry Young and I’m an apprentice working on the Battle Bus project that the museum is running through 2014

How does your day start?
Wake up 7:15 and ram my breakfast down, make sure I’m ready and then head out to the station at 8ish.

How do you get into work?
I get the train from Dartford to Charing Cross and then walk along the strand to Covent Garden.

Breakfast?
Nice big bowl of cornflakes and a cup of tea.

What does a typical day look like?
I usually get into the office around 9:30, check my emails and my schedule for the day and then get to work on whatever I need to do. Break times are usually spent at Denmark St. or around Covent Garden as I like to get some fresh air.

What’ the most challenging part of your job?
Currently I’m planning the talks, tours, the display vehicle and the volunteers activities that will go with the Battle Bus, so it’s mainly having all these great ideas, but trying to make them work.

What do you love most about your work?
I work at London Transport Museum and that’s pretty cool all on its own. But I would say seeing the Museum in full swing full of people is nice to see too.

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
I usually get home around 7 but to unwind I usually sit back and play my guitar whilst watching my favourite YouTube personalities.


Ed

Who are you and what do you do at the Museum?
I’m Edward Currie and I’m Museum technical support

How does your day start?
Woke up by my daughter usually wanting to play

How do you get into work?
C2C from Southend then walk from Fenchurch Street if sun is out. If not, District Line.

Breakfast?
Porrige and coffee

What does a typical day look like?
Repairing faults in gallery setting up AV for clients

What’s the most challenging part of your job?
Fault finding resolving problems that occur

What do you love most about your work?
The different jobs not always the same thing and the people you work with

How do you unwind after a hard day at the office?
Watch In the night garden after daughters bath then falling asleep on the couch

Tube Station Artist’s First Show Held At Busworks

Last year Caledonian Road station customer services assistant Kim Kalan brightened up the ticket hall at the station with her intricate whiteboard drawings, often with accompanying messages and thoughtful poems. Now the self-taught artist, who has switched from using marker pens to acrylics, is staging her very first solo exhibition.

Station artist Kim Kalan at the opening night of her exhibition at the Busworks
Station artist Kim Kalan at the opening night of her exhibition at the Busworks

It’s being held around the corner from the Piccadilly Line station at the aptly named Busworks complex, the former premises of the London General Omnibus Company (LGOC) which has been converted into flexible offices, studios and workshops. As well as inviting fellow station staff – including her mother Sandra, who works in the ticket office – several of her regular customers, with whom she is extremely popular, were asked along to the preview night.

With Kim are fellow Caledonian Road station staff members Terry Rollo (left), also a customer services assistant, and her mother Sandra Lynch
With Kim are fellow Caledonian Road station staff members Terry Rollo (left), also a customer services assistant, and her mother Sandra Lynch

Called ‘Kimistic Origins – The Caledonian Road Station Artist Revealed’, the show features Kim’s very colourful and highly imaginative acrylic paintings.

Kim is also continuing to produce regular whiteboard drawings at the station to, as she says they “make the day better for my customers.”

The show runs until the end of October at The Busworks, 39 North Road, London N7 9DP and is open on weekdays from 9.30am until 5.30pm. Kim’s work can also be seen on www.kimistic.co.uk

Written by Stephen Barry, Volunteer

Station Staff Make Wood Green Open Day A Success

To add to the many special events taking place this year to mark the 150th anniversary of the London Underground, staff at Wood Green station on the Piccadilly Line organised a highly successful Open Day on Saturday, August 31.

The Open Day, the first to be held at the north London station, proved extremely popular with visitors of all ages who were taken by staff on an hourly guided tour covering both the outside and inside of the building.

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Designed by Charles Holden, Wood Green station was opened on September 19, 1932 as part of the first section of the Cockfosters extension from Finsbury Park to Arnos Grove. It is now a Grade II listed building.

After learning about the design features of the exterior facade and the spacious booking hall, visitors went down to the platforms and then into restricted areas not normally open to the public. These included a narrow maintenance tunnel which runs between the Eastbound and Westbound platforms and the machine room housing the vital escalator mechanisms.

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At the end of the tour visitors were treated to coffee and biscuits in an upstairs rest room, where staff had displayed old photographs showing the construction and development of the station. They were also given an illustrated book on the history of the Piccadilly Line extension.

The success of the Open Day was due to all the enthusiasm and hard work shown by the station staff team consisting of supervisor Ombretta Riu-Tubl and customer services assistants Nigel Buckmire and Jane Bennett. They were assisted by Steve Dagsland, supervisor at nearby Manor House station which held its Open Day – believed to be the first on the Underground network – earlier in the year.

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“We decided to hold the Open Day because we wanted to show off all parts of this historic station to our many customers who regularly use it,” said Ombretta. “The staff were very keen on the idea and on the day Nigel turned out to be a first class tour guide despite his initial nervousness.”

Following the popularity of the Wood Green and Manor House Open Days similar events may now be held at other stations along the Piccadilly Line.

Written by Stephen Barry, Volunteer

Art and poster tour guides visit Central St Martins

On the 4th July volunteers and staff from London Transport Museum went along to Central St Martins’ new building at Granary square (behind Kings Cross station) to see their printing facilities and learn about the process of making a poster, from art work to the finished print.

Our volunteers offer tours to the public of the art and poster collection at the Museum Depot on a regular basis, and to enhance their knowledge on the collection we decided to arrange this visit to give them an insight into the design and printing process.

Everyone was welcomed and given an insightful tour of the building by staff which included the new galleries and printing facilities (ranging from Macbooks to letter pressing machines).  Having the opportunity to view a collection of German posters was a big highlight and a chance to see how poster design in Germany influenced the development and graphic styles of London Transport advertising campaigns in the early 20th Century.  We also each had the opportunity to have a go at using a letter press machine to create a text print commemorating the visit.  It was a great experience and really showed how much manual work is involved in the process!

If you are interested in a tour of London Transport Museum Depot’s art and poster collection, contact Sam Clift at sam.clift@ltmuseum.co.uk