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Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Visiting Nabokov's Tube Carriage Offices

Yet another example of me screaming "Why didn't you tell me this before?" when a friend nonchalantly mentions in passing something that's London Underground related but so totally in the spirit of this blog. It happened when my friend
Lloyd said he'd got his busking license. And now my friend James Grieve, the artistic director of a great little theatre company - Nabokov - said "Oh yeah, did I tell you our new offices were in a Tube carriage".

"No you bloody didn't", I screamed. The poor man wiped the blood away from his ears and said, "Well maybe you'd like to visit one day".

The Tube carriage offices from Great Eastern Street

Stupidly I decided to pick a day when there were gale force winds and the rain was soaking me through. But a promise is a promise, and yesterday I made my way over to Great Eastern Street to visit the Tube offices in the sky!

I first blogged about these offices in 2006. They are the brain child of Tom Foxcroft who also has space in the carriage James works in. The old Jubilee Line carriages are made into work spaces for creative start-up businesses in Shoreditch, East London. Village Underground, is Tom's charity which supports new small companies.

Going up what seems like a never ending steep (and at this stage extremely wet) spiral staircase was at first a little scary. But the scariness is worth it.

Walking to the Offices

Not Great for Sufferers of Vertigo

James's offices were up yet another small flight of stairs and I walked in and recognised Tom. He had longer hair than around 18 months ago and had no idea that I'd blogged about him before (such is the power of this blog).

Tom Foxcroft in the Tube Office

James showed me around - which was quite easy to do as it was very errr.... open plan. However, the smoking room at the front was interesting.

The Smoking Room

It was the driver's cab.

Posters for James' plays looked perfect in their Tube car home and the old strap hangers made them look like museum pieces.

Posters from James Plays

The office fan quickly warmed up my soaking feet and we had a great catch up and I plan to see their new play Artefacts at the Bush Theatre next week, the final London week.

James in his Tube Carriage Office

I promised to make another visit when the weather was better, as James said the City views were fantastic and you also have a bird's eye view of the building of the new Shoreditch station.

They have a fab angel investor scheme and I plan to become a "cherubim" supporter. If James is amenable I might try to arrange another visit for a few other people as the views were really spectacular and it's possibly the coolest office you can imagine.

; Posted by annie mole Tuesday, March 11, 2008 Permalink COMMENT HERE