I have a question regarding Down Street disused station. Earlier this year I went on a Hidden London tour of the station during which we learnt about how the passageways were subdivided into various offices etc. Check out photographs on this page of Sub Brit to see what I mean.
Whilst all the subdivisions are still present along both platforms, on the lower landing/passenger footways all the partition walls are gone, presumably so it can be kept clear for evacuation. Does anyone know when these walls came down? Was it following the King's Cross fire of 1987 or before then?
The partitions had long gone when I first started leading tours down there in the early 1990s - I was told at that time it had been due to work on the IMR but I could never quite work out why, if that was the case, the platform level partitions hadn't gone as well? Possibly the platform rooms are too 'structural' and being adjacent to the tracks too much hassle to take out. I think the upper rooms had gone by the time the spiral staircase was replaced.
It is possible the spiral staircase was replaced later, perhaps at the same time as the fitting of the new lighting system. In this old clip from a tour in 1993 there are no direct shots of the staircase, but it is clear the passageways were lit by incandescent lighting rather than the newer fluorescent bulkheads. So Down Street as an evacuation route must have been modified in stages.
Going back to the partition walls, I have just had a look in the book entitled 'London's secret tubes' (Andrew Emerson & Tony Beard). It says the following: "a visit by one of the authors revealed that the offices in the lower subway remained intact in 1986 including the historically most interesting committee room. The whole lot has now been swept away and the subway returned to a long, bare, empty subway."
This makes me think the argument for the walls coming down to clear way for an evacuation route is more credible than the argument to make way for the IMR equipment.