1: A station on the London Underground Northern Line, traditionally renowned for being difficult to get to for the following reasons:

  1. Its hours of operation were somewhat restricted
  2. Although it appears to be located on the Northern Line between Euston and Camden Town, there are in fact two branches of the Northern Line running between these two stations, only one of which passes through Mornington Crescent. To the unsuspecting and inexperienced traveller the station may therefore seem like a chimera or mirage, sometimes appearing and sometimes not.
  3. The station was closed for many years. On several occasions London Underground tried to close it for good, but local residents (and, no doubt, fans of I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue) held out and eventually won. Ironically, London Underground now recommends that people use Mornington Crescent to ease the weekend overcrowding at Camden Town.

2: One of the 'games' often played in the BBC Radio 4 panel game I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue, and now very much a point of common reference for many generations of listeners to BBC Radio comedy programmes. It is not uncommon to meet people who have heard the programme and who will ask in all seriousness: "So, what are the rules to Mornington Crescent?" If you are one of those people then you should refer to the node Mornington Crescent : Rules: far be it from me to shatter your illusions by telling you that it is all a load of jolly old bollocks!

Mornington Crescent station was built in 1900, and originally called 'Seymour Street'. By 1907 it was given its present name, and, apart from its use as the title of a popular game (one that apparently originates from Taxi drivers, and predates 'I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue'), it was completely unremarkable until 1992, when it was closed for extensive repairs to its elevators.

A complete refurbishment followed, and due to rising costs it looked likely that the station would never open again. During this time the name remained on the London Underground map, but it was covered with a mysterious red 'X'. The station was still visible - dusty and deserted - but the trains powered past it without slowing. After six years of inactivity, funding was forthcoming, and the station was repaired in late 1997, opening in March 1998. It's now a grade 2 listed building.

It's within easy walking distance of Camden, and Camden Town station. Due to overcrowding, the entrances to Camden Town are often closed, only allowing passengers to exit - in which case, the guards will helpfully direct you to Mornington Crescent.

Why is it called 'Mornington Crescent'? The station itself is directly opposite a road which is crescent-shaped. And called 'Mornington Crescent'. So now you know.

In 2002 a plaque was unveiled in the station, commemorating Willie Rushton, one of the stars of 'I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue' and also of Private Eye magazine, amongst many other things. Thanks to Withnail for that.

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