London Tube stations get bright, beautiful Pride makeover to celebrate the LGBT+ community

·3-min read

Several new LGBT-themed roundels have been unveiled across London’s vast network of Underground stations to celebrate the city’s queer community.

Transport for London (TfL) said Londoners will be able to see the ten new Pride roundels – aka the giant London Underground logos seen on platforms that have the station names – from Wednesday (22 September).

The colourful station signs were designed by TfL staff and prominent figures in the capital city’s LGBT+ community. Notable names include broadcaster and historian Tim Dunn, activist Marc Thompson, London’s night czar Amy Lamé, museum curator Dan Vo and designer Philip Normal.

Each location for the vibrant roundels was specifically chosen by the creators to reflect their designs.

The new roundels have been placed at five different locations on the Tube network. This includes Baker Street, Caledonian Road, Brixton, Vauxhall and Hammersmith.

Each roundel is also accompanied by a sign that explains who thought up the design and the meaning behind the eye-catching signs.

Lamé shared in a statement that she was “acutely aware” she was “walking the steps of my LGBTQ+ fore-siblings” when she first arrived in London. She said her Oscar Wilde aimed to “encapsulate London’s rich LGBTQ+ history and also show a pathway to the future”.

“As more people return to public transport, it feels really special that ten Pride roundels will be on display across the network – clearly showing that in London you can be who you want to be and love who you want to love,” Lamé said.

A person walks by the LGBT+ Pride London Underground roundel designed by Amy Lamé at the Caledonian Road station
A person walks by the LGBT+ Pride London Underground roundel designed by Amy Lamé at the Caledonian Road station. (Provided)

Thompson shared that he wanted his design to put the “words of Joseph Beam, a Black, queer activist and writer in such a prominent position”. The black, white and red design features the words “Black men loving Black men is a revolutionary act”.

“I’ve chosen these words and this image because I wanted honest visibility and representation of Black queer men to be highlighted in the London Underground,” Thompson explained. “I am particularly proud that this roundel will be placed in Brixton where I was born and raised, and this station is central to my journey as a Black queer man in this city.”

A person walks by the LGBT+ Pride roundel designed by Marc Thompson at Brixton station
A person walks by the LGBT+ Pride roundel designed by Marc Thompson at Brixton station. The design was inspired by the words of Joseph Beam, a Black, queer activist and writer. (Provided)

In addition to the special Pride roundels, TfL said there will be a poster campaign featuring queer staffers in North Greenwich, Vauxhall and Green Park Tube stations.

These posters will feature photographs of TfL staff and their partners and encourage people travelling on London’s transport system to support the city’s LGBT+ community.

Both the posters and the Pride roundels will be on display for at least a month, TfL said.

The installation of Pride signs is a tradition for TfL in recent years. In 2018, TfL painted several underground roundels Pride-colours and also installed the trans flag on some tube benches and signs – a first for the transportation body.

TfL introduced a bisexual Pride roundel, a trans Pride roundel and an Underground sign to represent the LGBT+ communities of colour in 2019, according to MyLondon.

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