We had actually discussed companies sponsoring Tube stations last year. Back in November I blogged about a Robert Elms (from BBC Radio London) debate that I went to on London Transport:
"Robert Elms rather enthusiastically said - "I know how we can make transport a lot cheaper, why don't we get McDonalds to sponsor station names. You know how we get free transport over the New Year cos of companies like Smirnoff and Fosters who sponsor it." So instead of Piccadilly Circus it could be called Ronald McDonald's Circus and loads cheaper travel or even free travel to that station. Interesting idea, which actually met with with a good laugh and approval in the studio audience. But I wonder if it would ever work?"
A number of you had come up with some funny suggestions and a number of them have been put into practice on this map.
Londonist were ahead of me on blogging this one - well done guys!
London Reading Map
Now the next is not entirely accurate when it comes to the Tube map and locations as a lot of artistic licence has been used. It's the cover of a book - London by the Book - by Rough Guide in association with a campaign to "Get London Reading": "From Bloomsbury to Bromley, Geoffrey Chaucer to Zadie Smith, London by the Book is a guide to the city through writers and their writing. Packed with obscure and intriguing information (How did Graham Greene survive the bombing of his Clapham house in 1941? Which nineteenth-century poet was in the habit of sliding naked down the banisters?), it chronicles the waves of novelists, poets and playwrights who have lived in London over the centuries, written about it, and developed its identity as a result."
Copies are being given out at Earl's Court, Victoria, Farringdon and Angel stations next Monday & Tuesday, but you can also download it here.
However, Waterstones have prepared a far more accurate free London Reading Map which they are giving away in their shops. It has 100 of their favourite books on big map with the locations & scenes in London that the books are based in or feature heavily - eg Nick Hornby's Fever Pitch - Highbury, Monica Ali's Brick Lane (pretty obivous), The Witches of Chiswick (again fairly obvious). A number feature railways 4.50 from Paddington by Agatha Christie, Necropolis Railway by Andrew Martin (Waterloo) and A Metropolitan Murder by Lee Jackson (Baker Street). This would also make a prety cool alternative Tube map, although I'm not sure you could find a book for every one of the 275 London Undeground stations. Now there's a challenge!