Harrow + Wealdstone Platform

Harrow + Wealdstone Platform

Harrow + Wealdstone Entrance

Harrow + Wealdstone Entrance

Harrow + Wealdstone Platform

Harrow + Wealdstone Platform

 

The station was opened by the London and Birmingham Railway (L&BR) as Harrow on 20 July 1837 in what was then rural Middlesex. At the time the station was built, the area was fields and the nearest large settlement was at Harrow on the Hill about 1.5 miles (2.4 km) to the south. Wealdstone was a collection of houses at the north end of what is now Wealdstone High Street, about 1 mile (1.6 km) north of the station. The station buildings on the south west (Harrow) side of the station are the older part of the station, located beside what were the fast lines until the platforms were used for the later Euston to Watford DC Line and the main line tracks were re-routed through the previous slow line platforms and new platforms (numbers 5 and 6) to the north east; a new, larger, station building was also erected on this Wealdstone side of the station. The station footbridge was originally constructed with a full-height central barrier with passengers using the "London" side and railway and postal staff using the "country" side to move goods and mail via lifts which were removed in the early 1970s, leaving two parcels elevators serving the DC line platforms for the remaining postal traffic. On 18 December 1890, a short branch line was opened by the London & North Western Railway (LNWR, successor to the L&BR) to Stanmore to the north-east of the main line. In 1930 an intermediate halt was constructed as Belmont to serve the developing residential areas locally. The train was known affectionately as the "Belmont Rattler". By the end of the 19th century Wealdstone had developed in size and the station was given its current name on 1 May 1897 to reflect more accurately its location. The Harrow and Wealdstone rail crash of 1952, killing 112 people, remains Britain's worst peacetime rail disaster. The eponymous Weald Stone is a sarsen stone, formerly marking the boundary between the parishes of Harrow and Harrow Weald. It is located outside the Weald Stone Inn (formerly the Red Lion), off High Road, Harrow Weald.

 

The station has undergone several improvements in recent years, with the footbridge (which links both entrances and all platforms) improved by removal of the central barrier to allow use of the full width, new lifts for the use of disabled persons, and newly painted and brightly illuminated waiting rooms. In recent years the two-track reversing sidings (used for turning Bakerloo line trains and occasionally for DC line trains) located between the tracks of the DC line at the northern end side of the station have been replaced by a single siding and the curve at the Down end of platform 2 eased using the space vacated by the removed siding; this in practice leaves the siding unavailable for use by LO trains except when Bakerloo trains are not running. Harrow and Wealdstone (with Willesden Junction) is one of the two stations on the DC line which can be used for turning or stabling trains clear of the running lines during reduced or disrupted services although trains can be reversed using crossovers at more stations. Ticket gatelines have been installed at both entrances in addition to the pre-existing booking offices. Trains on the Fast lines pass this station through platforms 3 and 4, usually without serving this station; access to these platforms is now by staff-operated gates which are opened when necessary. Southern and London Midland stopping services generally use platforms 5 and 6 on the Slow lines but all can use either pair of platforms when needed since the four Main Line platforms were lengthened to take 12-coach trains. Platform 2 on the Up DC line has unusually been maintained at a length of 182m rather than the usual DC line length of around 125m, long enough for an 8-coach train; on rare past occasions in recent years involving total closure of the Fast and Slow lines, main line trains have been diverted over the DC line between Watford Junction and Euston but without stopping at intermediate stations. The station is in Travel Card Zone 5. The station has lifts, wi-fi, payphones, cash machines, a waiting room, a bridge and toilets as well as ASDA click and collect.

 

Connections: National Rail. Bakerloo Line. London Buses routes 140, 182, 186, 258, 340, H9 and H10 and night route N18 serve the station.