Q-stock was built in the 1920s and 1930s to two very different designs.The earlier cars show the American influence on early Underground operation, with their characteristic stepped “clerestory” roofs. Later Q-stock cars have an “Art deco” look with flared sides. Q-stock operated principally on the District Line, which has recently celebrated the 150th anniversary of the opening of the first section of this Line.
One of the earlier Q-stock cars is on display at the London Transport Museum at Covent Garden.
There are four other Q-stock cars in the Museum collection. They are:

  • 4416/17, built in 1938, and withdrawn from passenger service in 1972.
  • 08063, built in 1936, withdrawn from passenger service in 1971, and presented to the Museum in 1997.
  • 4184 dating from 1923 and withdrawn in 1971. 

The initial aim of the current Q-stock project is to restore three of the cars to operational condition.

Phase 1 involves restoration of the two Q38 driving motor cars 4416 and 4417, along with Q35 trailer 08063, which is already close to operational condition.  Phase 2, restoration of Q23 4184, could then be undertaken once the three car train is operational, facilitated by a further fundraising campaign.


Project Update: July 2023

Car 4417 (one of two flair-sided Q38 cars) has been restored externally and internally by volunteers within the Depot. The volunteers are now progressing similar work on Q38 car 4416. Both cars will then need extensive work by contractors on traction motors and other equipment below the floor. A specification for this work has been prepared and went out to tender in July 2023.

The Q-stock train, once restored, will need to operate with brake vans acting as “match wagons” for some movements. A contract to restore two brake vans in the Museum collection for this purpose has been placed; the vans left Acton Depot in July 2023 for restoration by Rampart Engineering in Derbyshire.

Watch Brake Van B584 being collected from Acton Depot in the Members area of our website here


Funding for the Q-stock project is being underwritten by the Friends in conjunction with the Museum. Further donations welcome!

Plans are being finalised for the period to which individual cars will be restored. These dates will vary from car to car, to allow different stories to be presented on the role Q-stock played in major events, such as the World War 2 evacuation and 1948 London Olympics.

If all goes to plan, it is hoped to have the restoration of the three cars complete by late 2024 and for the train to be operated on special trips in 2025.