My visit to the Victoria Station cryptograms in London
A few days ago I had the opportunity to visit the fabled inscriptions at Victoria Station tube station in London. Here is my report.
This week I was at the 44CON conference in London and gave a workshop as well as a talk. And no, my London trip has nothing to do with the death of the Queen.
At Victoria Station
In between I made a little detour to Victoria Station. There I wanted to get to the bottom of one of the last mysteries of the British capital: the coded messages at the entrances of Victoria Station subway station. Here is the proof that I was there:
As a reminder, I noticed years ago that the markings on one of these inputs look like a coded message. At first it seemed too trivial, but two weeks ago I blogged about it. To my surprise, my readers Norbert, Doc Cool, Mars, and David Vierra confirmed that these dots do indeed encode a message, in Braille form.
As before, I know of no other source for this code, although millions of people must have seen it.
Field research at Cardinal Place
The entrance to the subway station in question is at Cardinal Place. Here is a picture of it:
Die Punktmuster sind auch aus südlicher Richtung zu sehen:
And from the north:
The patterns repeat themselves. In the end, only one message is encoded: CARDINAL PLACE. Blog reader Matthias Axinger has kindly provided me with a corresponding diagram.
Doc Cool, who runs the highly recommended website Kryptografie.de, where there is also a Braille feature, gave me the following analysis:
Field research at Wilton Road
Blog reader Gerry alerted me to the fact that there is another entrance to the same subway station that has dot patterns on it. This one is located on Wilton Road. Of course, I also explored this entrance as part of my field trip:
The dot pattern looks a little different here:
Gerry, Hias and Norbert have found out which message is coded here. It is WILTON ROAD. So again, the location of the entrance building is in braille. Norbert thankfully sent me the following diagram:
The two entrances were built in 2018, as far as I know. Strange that no one has bothered with the codes yet. By the way, the subway yard at Victoria Station has other entrances. However, my on-site research revealed that there are no dot patterns there.
Thanks to my readers, my trip to Victoria Station was a complete success. For the first time, I was able to document the Victoria Station cryptograms completely in this article.
More steganographic codes?
Of course, I used my London trip to keep an eye out for more hidden messages. This is not difficult, because as a person interested in steganography, you see such everywhere anyway, where there is any pattern. Right next to the subway entrance at Cardinal Place, for example, I discovered the following message:
In my hotel room (Ibis near Earl’s Court) I even found a code on the floor:
If any reader can confirm that something is indeed coded here, I’ll be happy to award the Gold Order of Pareidolia.
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Further reading: Steganografische Nachricht aus dem Zweiten Weltkrieg gelöst