Lonely Planet Writer

Why one London Underground station will be covered in pictures of cats next month

Visitors to one London Underground station will get a pleasant surprise in September as all the advertising space will be taken over by pictures of cats.

An example of how the cat advertising could look like.
An example of what the London Underground cats advertising could look like. Image by The Citizens Advertising Takeover Service (CATS)

For two weeks starting from 12 September, Clapham Common station in Lambeth will be adorned with pictures of cats, including some from two charities, the Battersea Dogs & Cats Home and Cats Protection.

The project was led by the Citizens Advertising Takeover Service (yes, that spells CATS) and funded by the public via a Kickstarter campaign to the tune of £23,131. The group estimates a third of a million people will view the ads while they’re up. The collective are hoping the cat-vertisements will help people“feel free and happy for a few moments”.

James Turner, one of the people behind the project, told Campaign“We’re not anti-advertising. In fact, we desperately need it and the power of creativity to help change minds and encourage positive values in society.” He explained that “we’re going to encourage people to come down and see it – see a public space in London that has a very different objective”.

It’s not the first time commuters have been treated to something outside the usual advertisements. The Poems from the Underground project has been in existence since 1986 and recently showcased Shakespearean verse to mark the 400th anniversary of the playwright’s death.