The Saxon name for Ealing was recorded c.700 as 'Gillingas', meaning 'place of the people associated with Gilla', from the personal name Gilla and the Old English suffix '-ingas', meaning 'people of'. Over the centuries, the name has changed, and has been known as 'Illing', 1130; 'Gilling', 1243; and 'Ylling', 1254, until 'Ealing' became the standard spelling in the 19th century. The Great Western Railway (GWR) opened its pioneering broad gauge tracks through Ealing Broadway between Paddington and Taplow on 6 April 1838, although Ealing Broadway station did not open until the following 1 December. As the only station in the area when it opened, it was initially named 'Ealing'. Prior to World War I, plans were made by the GWR to construct a new, mainly freight, line between Ealing and Shepherd's Bush, to connect west-to-south with the West London Railway. The Central London Railway (CLR, now the Central Line) would use the line by extending its tracks the short distance north from its terminus at Wood Lane (now closed), to meet the new GWR tracks. CLR services to two new platforms at Ealing Broadway, built between the GWR and DR stations, started on 3 August 1920, with, initially, just one intermediate stop at East Acton.
The combined station has nine platforms: four National Rail (platforms 1 to 4). Trains do not stop at platforms 1 and 2, except during engineering works or other disruption. Platforms 1 and 3 are on lines leaving London, while 2 and 4 are on lines into London. Most of the National Rail platforms are open to the elements, although there are some waiting rooms on each platform. Two Central line (5 and 6), which have a shared awning canopy. Three District Line (7 to 9). District Line platforms 8 and 9 are partially covered by a short canopy, and retain a number of examples of early solid-disc Underground signs, used before Edward Johnston designed the familiar roundel in 1919. All platforms are accessed through a gateline of ticket barriers. The station has wi-fi.
Connections: National Rail and District Line. London Buses routes 65, 83, 112, 207, 226, 297, 427, 607, E1, E2, E7, E8, E9, E10 and E11 and night routes N7, N11 and N207 serve the station.