It was opened as a railway station called Bromley by the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway (LTSR) in 1858, on a more direct route to Barking from the terminus at Fenchurch Street. On 17 May 1869 a spur opened from Bow railway station on the North London Railway line to Bromley Junction just to the west of the station. A shuttle service operated between Bow and Plaistow until wartime economies saw the service withdrawn on 1 January 1915. The construction of the Whitechapel and Bow Railway allowed the District Railway (now known as the District line) to start serving the station in 1902 and initially steam services operated through to East Ham with some operating as far as Upminster. The District Line joined the main line at Campbell Road Junction also to the west of the station (and Bromley Junction). Electrification of the system followed in 1905. Delayed by World War I, electrified tracks were extended by the London, Midland and Scottish Railway (LMS) to Upminster and through services fully resumed in 1932. A fire in February 1970 led to the demolition of the station buildings (dating from 1894) and a new modern booking office opened on 11 June 1972.
In early records the name first appears as Brambele, Brambelegh, or Brembeley and is likely to be derived from the Saxon words Brembel – a bramble, and lege – a field. In 1967, the London Underground station at Bromley was renamed to Bromley-by-Bow to distinguish it from the stations at Bromley in the London Borough of Bromley some 8 miles (12.9 km) to the south. The station has four platforms, of which only two are currently in use; serving the tube lines, which share a track at this point, in both directions. The remaining two platforms formerly served the London, Tilbury and Southend Railway (now operated by c2c) but are no longer in use; trains instead pass through the station without stopping. Three ticket barriers and a gate control access to all platforms. The station has payphones, wi-fi and a bridge.
Connections:Devons Road station on the Docklands Light Railway is nearby but this is not an official out-of-station interchange. London Bus routes 108, 323 and 488 serve the station.