Finsbury Park draws to a close my long run on the Piccadilly Line which started at Knightsbridge 9 stops ago. The station first opened as the northern terminus of the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway on 15th December 1906. The mainline station here had opened some 40 years earlier, on the East Coast mainline.
The 1930s saw the Piccadilly Line extended north to Cockfosters as well as aborted plans to extend the Northern City Line, then considered part of the Underground network, onwards to Edgware and Alexandra Palace. If you think the Northern Line is confusing now, have a look at what might have been! The war however got in the way of these ambitious plans and they were scrapped.
The ’60s saw more change at Finsbury Park with the arrival of the Victoria Line. Existing and previously redundant tunnels were configured in such a way to allow handy cross platform interchange between both lines at the station – this also saw the end of Northern City Line services to the station.
The station building itself is pretty unremarkable, no doubt a victim of all the upheaval that has taken place here. There is a mix of ’60s looking buildings and more modern structures closer to the mainline rail platforms. There is however a rather nice mosaic of a balloon on the walls of the Piccadilly Line platforms.
The Pub: The World’s End, 21-23 Stroud Green Road, N4 3EF
The easiest way to reach the pub is to exit the station onto Wells Terrace, which is signposted in the long subway bit you find when you get up from the Underground platforms. From there, walk along to Stroud Green Road, head north for a few minutes until you find The World’s End.
I’ve always found The World’s End to be a bit of an ominous pub name but thankfully there is nothing forboding about this place. It’s a large spacious gastropub with plenty of seating. Given the proximity to Arsenal, there are plenty of football pictures on the wall, as well as photos of the Finsbury Park of yesteryear. The pub also has a Sky Sports licence, which you don’t see too often with gastros.
Continuing the sporting theme, the World’s End also has Table Football. They also offer a wide selection of board games too which I’m sure are very popular on Sunday afternoons as people relax on the comfy chairs at the back. The pub also plays host to a number of gigs and music events. As we popped by on an afternoon, there was no-one on so I popped into the empty backroom and took a photo. As you’ll see, it has a really intricate ceiling if you look past the black paint!
There was one ale on tap on our visit, Trumans Swift, which was a very pleasant pint. The food menu is a mix of traditional pub dishes and sandwiches, as well as more modern entries such as Gnnochi. We ate here. As I so often do, I went for the Burger and was certainly not disappointed. A very hearty portion with nice chunky hand made chips.
The World’s End has plenty of good things going for it and is well worth a visit!