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Fender unveils London tube map guitar

Special edition Stratocaster is the result of a new partnership with London Underground.

Fender has teamed up with London Underground to produce a special limited edition Stratocaster guitar featuring the tube map.

The guitar – unveiled by London-based musician James Black at St John’s Wood tube station – features an engraved neck plate, TfL logo on the back of the headstock, three single coil pickups and a maple neck alongside the tube map design.

Designed by Harry Beck in the 1930s, the iconic tube map already appears on a number of products. Something of an emblem of British culture, it now appears in the latest UK passports and was recently voted one of the top transport ‘Design Icons’ of all time in a poll of 10,000 Londoners.

The launch of the guitar comes as Transport for London and the London Transport Museum celebrate ‘Transported by Design’, an 18-month programme of events and exhibitions that explore good design on the transport network and its role in the lives of the millions of customers who use it each day.

An initial collection of 50 guitars has been produced, priced at £599, and will be available to order and buy at the London Transport Museum shop.

Fender’s European managing director, Graeme Mathieson said: “The Stratocaster and the London Tube map are both iconic symbols of London’s cultural heritage so we are proud to be collaborating with Transport for London in bringing these two design classics together.”

Speaking about the collaboration, Nick Brown, London Underground’s managing director, added: “Harry Beck’s imaginatively simple Tube map design helped revolutionise the way people get around London. That sense of using good design to make people’s lives better is still a major part of what we do. It is what we’re celebrating in our Transported by Design programme, and it is why this intriguing coming together of two design icons is so timely.”

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