The actions of London’s transport during WW2 are being highlighted by TfL’s corporate archives for the next few months.

While over 22,000 London Passenger Transport Board (TfL’s predecessor company) staff served in the armed forces during WWII, there was also the need to keep London’s transport network running despite the bombing.

The online exhibition ranges from keeping London working, with buses turned into ambulances, mobile canteens, sheltering in tube stations and maintenance staff diverted to the war effort — to the London Transport staff deployed to the battlefield itself.

Halifax Plane Production By The London Passenger Transport Board (c) TfL Corporate Archives

Tamara Thornhill, Corporate Archivist at TfL said: “We are proud of our colleagues whose work helped Britain’s war effort and ultimately helped save lives. This collection features never seen before images from the Second World War and information about the people who helped the London Passenger Transport Board (LPTB), who went to fight on the front lines and then returned to their day jobs once the war was over. I hope people will enjoy reading about the many ways the LPTB helped the war effort, including building planes, providing ambulance services and much more.”

The online exhibition will run until June 2021, and the plan is to add more to the display over the next few months.

When read in sequence the exhibition forms a ‘story’ and it is recommended that the best way of achieving this effect is to view each story in Gallery mode (available once you have clicked into the story).

The online exhibition is here.

TfL’s corporate archives are normally open to researchers, although it’s closed at the moment due to you know what.

Buses Operating During Blackout (c) TfL Corporate Archives


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