Norwood Junction Pedestrian Foot Tunnel/Underpass

The mural at Norwood Junction Foot Tunnel was created and completed by Will Barrass and James Carey and supported by 4 volunteers.

Our objective was to remove the graffiti and brighten up the Underpass/Foot Tunnel, however, we encountered some safety issues in creating a using paint on the tiles lining the tunnel. On review, we decided that it was best to create a large mural on the wall to the Clifford Road entrance of the tunnel.

6 of us that included 2 artists and 4 volunteers spent the day ensuring that the pedestrians were safe and informed of the process. We created adequate space for prams and wheelchairs to pass through during the painting process and offered information to those using the underpass. Young people, school children and youth were enthusiastic and delighted with the outcome. Some young school boys were very keen to get involved in future projects and insisted on giving us the names of their school and the year they belonged to. It was such a delight to talk the young people who seemed quite motivated to contribute. That the mural has little or no graffitti on it to date is a testament to the pride in the neighbourhood.

There was positive feeling by all those who walked who encouraged us to continue to make the neighbourhood look better.

📣 🙋🏽VOLUNTEERS NEEDED 13th, 14th ,15th October 2021

Dates to start painting small bright murals at the entrance of the foot tunnel has now been confirmed by Will Barras, the artist who has created several murals around South Norwood. On the 13th, 14th ,15th October 2021, volunteers will support Will while he is painting parts of the entrance to the tunnel. All necessary safety precautions will be taken during and after the work and we will post information in the vicinity. The paint that is being used is non toxic and quick drying.

We are looking for volunteers to help on either of the days. Please contact Shuba at [email protected]


About the Underpass.

Another lesser known construction of historic importance is the Norwood Junction Foot Tunnel/Underpass. Built by Robert McAlpine & Sons and opened in 1912, it was constructed in reinforced concrete, a revolutionary engineering technique at the time and the first of its kind in the world. There are currently 2 plaques to mark the centenary of the opening of the railway underpass at Norwood Junction.

The beautiful photographic murals in the underpass, along faded and worn, are titled “The Long Way Home”, by Liane Lang and were installed in 2011.

A collective of local residents who use the underpass as a quick route to the high street, have formed an initiative with WLSE25 to brighten up the space through community led art murals through the walkway. The Litter Picking Friends continue to clean the underpass making it usable for the young parents who wheel their pushchairs through the pathway and for wheelchair users.

Currently in conversation with the Highways Department who have planned maintenance of the space, the project will complete Risk Assessment and Health and Safety checks before starting to make the space brighter and usable.