Politics 9 January 2013 The anniversary of the London Underground isn't when you think Do we celebrate a corporate dinner, or opening to the public? Print HTML Happy 150th anniversary of the London Underground! According to Transport for London, today marks 150 years since the first underground journey took place between Paddington and Farringdon on the Metropolitan Railway. Except the anniversary hasn't always been celebrated as the 9th. As Diamond Geezer points out, The London Transport museum still records the first section as opening on the 10th; and the Manchester Guardian of 11th January 1863 agrees, referring to the "the Metropolitan (underground) Railway" being opened "yesterday". What gives? The answer could be seen as a rather sad sign of the times. The 9th and 10th are both anniversaries: the latter of the day the railway opened to the public; the former of the day a private journey was arranged for the directors, ending with a banquet for 600 dignitaries on the platform of Farringdon station. We used to celebrate the date of a wondrous new transport system being opened to the world. Now we celebrate a corporate dinner. › Trying to start afresh this year? Have a bath. No, really A restored steam-train rolls through Baker Street station to celebrate the anniversary. Photograph: Getty Images Alex Hern is a technology reporter for the Guardian. He was formerly staff writer at the New Statesman. You should follow Alex on Twitter. Subscribe More Related articles An unmatched font of knowledge Leader: On capitalism and insecurity Cabinet audit: what does the appointment of Liam Fox as International Trade Secretary mean for policy?