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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Fly the Tube

Someone looks like they were a bit troubled on the London Underground heading to Heathrow, if the scrawled message on following ad is anything to go by.

Heathrow Tube Ad by Utku Can

I was at the Football 3's soft launch with my friend Utku who works for Mint Digital (great idea to turn their meeting room into a pub, by the way) and he showed me a photo he took on Sunday.

The ad was extolling the virtues of Tube as the best way to fly, but someone else reckoned that getting a train would be better than flying. Maybe it was a message about saving carbon footprints rather than a speed issue though.

Either way, the ad about Heathrow reminded me of an London Underground ad from the Seventies, which promoted the Tube as "The only way to fly".

Fly The Tube & Clamped Tube Ads

So I grabbed my Underground Art book and sure enough, the ad, with it's very Seventies looking typeface, was there. As you can see, it's next to another more striking ad showing a clamped Tube.

The ad on the left is from 1984 & refers to when wheel clamping was introduced. "The absurd image of a clamped Tube train makes the advantage of Underground travel immediately obvious" wrote Oliver Green in the book.

However, as I live reasonably close to Heathrow, I usually take the opposite approach and take a taxi rather than a Tube to the airport. It's faster for me as I don't have to faff around with my luggage on a packed Tube or deal with interchanges. But loads of people do get the Tube to Heathrow rather than the Heathrow Express. I've never taken the Heathrow Express, but I have missed a flight through being stuck on the Gatwick Express, so I wouldn't see the train as the "only" way to fly.


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