“East Finchley is a London Underground station in East Finchley in the London Borough of Barnet, north London. The station is on the High Barnet branch of the Northern line, between Highgate and Finchley Central stations, and is in Travelcard Zone 3.
The station was opened on 22 August 1867, on the Great Northern Railway’s line between Finsbury Park and Edgware stations. As part of London Underground’s only partially completed Northern Heights plan, the station was completely rebuilt with additional tracks in the late 1930s. Northern line trains started serving the station on 3 July 1939 and main line passenger services ended on 2 March 1941.
East Finchley station was built by the Edgware, Highgate and London Railway (EH&LR) on its line from Finsbury Park station to Edgware station. Before the line was opened, it was purchased in July 1867 by the larger Great Northern Railway(GNR), whose main line from King’s Cross ran through Finsbury Park on its way to Potters Bar and the north. The station, originally named East End, Finchley, opened along with the railway to Edgware on 22 August that year. The station was given its current name either on 1 February 1887 or, alternatively, in 1886. As a result of the 1921 Railways Act, which created the “Big Four” railway companies, the GNR amalgamated with several other railways to create the London & North Eastern Railway (LNER) in 1923.
The new station was constructed in an Art Deco/Streamline Moderne design by Charles Holdenwith L H Bucknell. Like Holden’s other designs for London Underground in the 1930s, East Finchley station was inspired by European architecture (particularly Dutch) that Holden had seen on trips to the continent during that decade. The track here runs roughly north-west to south-east. The imposing station building, built on rising ground adjacent to the railway bridge over High Road (A1000), has three entrances. The two main entrances to the ticket hall are on the north side of the tracks facing High Road and the third, minor entrance, is on the south side. The entrances are linked by a passage under the tracks which provides access up to the platforms.
A strong feature of the station is the semi-circular glazed stairways leading to the enclosed bridge over the tracks occupied by staff offices. Prominent from the platforms and dominating the main entrance façade is The Archer, a 10-foot-tall (3.0 m) statue by Eric Aumonier of a kneeling archercaptured as if having just released an arrow. The archer is intended to commemorate Finchley’s ancient association with hunting in the nearby Royal Forest of Enfield. Drivers on the Northern line still bear a tie pin based on the sculpture.
Amongst other work for London Underground, Aumonier also made two stone reliefs over two of the entrances to the canteen at London Underground’s Acton Works – one of a pie, knife and fork. A sculpture of Dick Whittington was planned for Highgate, but a reduction in the scope of the new station buildings caused by World War II meant this was never commissioned.
The sculptor also did some set work in the cinema. In 1946 he worked on the Powell and Pressburger film A Matter of Life and Deathat Denham Film Studios. On the giant moving stairway featured in the film, Aumonier created the statues of various famous people. By coincidence, Powell and Pressburger’s production company was called The Archers.
The station is a Grade II listed building.”