Underground party ends in mayhem

One of the things that surprised me about London was that you could drink openly on the Underground, which is their subway system.? Going to the bars, coming from the bars, or just out for an afternoon stroll, people would have open beers or booze and not even hide them.

Unfortunately, that policy is no more.? Yesterday marked the end of drinking on The Tube, but not before Londoners had a night dubbed “Last Round on the Underground.” Except, it ended very poorly as these things often do.

Police arrested 17 people and six Underground stations had to be closed after things turned ugly for the thousands of Londoners who showed up to celebrate.

The festivities were at first good-natured with partygoers wearing fancy dress as they swigged beer and wine, dancing and singing in the railway carriages.

But police moved in when the mood turned sour and fighting erupted, spoiling what officers had called “a fun event.”

The London transport ban on alcohol is designed to make buses, tubes and trains safer for the public but unions fear staff could be put in greater danger when they have to confront those breaking the ban.

The ban was a key manifesto pledge of new London Mayor Boris Johnson’s election campaign, and just days after his victory over Ken Livingstone, he announced plans to enact the measure.

“I’m determined to improve the safety and security of public transport in London and create a better environment for the millions of Londoners who rely on it,” Johnson said.

The best photos I could find of the evening were taken by a chap named Peter Cleghorn.? I’d post them here but rights were reserved and all.? Check them out it looks like this was a balls out good time.? Seriously.? I’m so upset I wasn’t there for this.

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