In 1870, a line was opened from Lea Bridge Road to Shern Hall Street station (a temporary station located west of the present day Wood street station) and a shuttle service operated commencing traffic on 24 April 1870. The train service was not operated as a through service and passengers had to change for trains to Bishopsgate station (this was the destination before Liverpool Street opened). The line between Hackney Downs and Church Hall Junction opened on 1 August 1872 and direct services to Bishopsgate commenced as a result. In 1873 the line was extended to a temporary terminus at Chingford (where the engines refilled from a farm pond). This extension saw the closure of Shern Hall station and the opening of Wood Street and Hale End (since renamed Highams Park). From 1872 services from the branch then operated to Bishopsgate station calling at Clapton and Hackney Downs. The following year trains were extended to Chingford. Between November 1872 and January 1874 trains terminated at the newly constructed Bishopsgate (Low Level) railway station and then to Liverpool Street when that station opened.
Clapton was from 1339 until the 18th century normally rendered as Clopton, meaning the "farm on the hill". The Old English clop - "lump" or "hill" - presumably denoted the high ground which rises from the River Lea. Eventually encompassing the north-eastern quarter of the parish, Clapton grew up along the way which in 1745 was called Hackney Lane, part of which ran through Broad (later Clapton) Common. Building spread to meet streets east of the high road and north of Homerton in the 19th century. Manorial courts from the early 19th century distinguished the parts north and south of Lea Bridge Road as Upper and Lower Clapton, and those names soon passed into general use. Hackney Lane came to be known as Lower and Upper Clapton roads, until in the late 19th century the stretch through the common to Stamford Hill was named Clapton Common. The area, along with Lower Clapton, was known in the 1990s and early 2000s for drug and gun related crimes, gaining it the nickname "Murder Mile." Clapton station is in both Travel Card zone 2 and zone 3. The station has wi-fi, payphones and help points but no toilets.
Connections: London Buses routes 106, 253, 254 and 393 and night route N253 serve the station.