The construction of the Great Western Railway started in 1835, with the first 22.5 miles (36.2 km) of line, from Paddington station to Maidenhead Bridge station, opened on 4 June 1838. In 1901, its major carriage washing and servicing facilities and locomotive depot were developed at Old Oak Common, bringing further employment and more immigrants to the district. The first major immigrant population had been Irish people post the Potato famine, and then post World War I. In World War II, due to the railway facilities, the district suffered greatly from German Luftwaffe bombing. After the war, the area became a refuge for the first Afro-Caribbean born contingent. The station opened on 1 October 1916 on the New Line on the north side of the existing London and North Western Railway (LNWR) tracks from Euston to Watford. The original station was replaced in 1980. Bakerloo line services had been running between Queen's Park and Willesden Junction since 10 May 1915. Since November 2007, National Rail services serving Kensal Green have been operated by LOROL under contract to Transport for London using the brand of London Overground; the station is managed by London Underground. The station was in the news early in 2006, as it was the last station visited by Thomas ap Rhys-Price before he was murdered in a robbery in Kensal Green. The two main suspects had also visited the station that same night, a short time before the murder, and mugged a man on the platform. A suspect also tried to use ap Rhys-Pryce's Oyster Card a day after the incident at the station, and was picked up on CCTV, aiding the police investigation.
This incident sparked a major public discussion on station safety and security, mainly because the station was un-staffed when the passenger was mugged. The only security present was CCTV cameras, and the ticket barriers were left open allowing the suspects to enter the station freely. Many high-profile politicians spoke on the issue of station safety and called on train companies to provide security or staff the station until the last train had left the station. The Mayor of London at the time, Ken Livingstone, became personally involved in this, and publicly attacked Silverlink, the then operator of the station, for not providing staffing or security throughout the station's opening hours. He also stated that any company that wanted to bid for the subsidy to run the train line would have commit to staffing the station until the last train had left. Eventually, towards the last quarter of 2006, Silverlink hired a private security firm to patrol the station, and also had speakers installed in the ticket hall to deter gangs of youths from loitering. The station has a bridge and help points but no toilets.
Connections: National Rail. Bakerloo Line. London Buses route 18 and night route N18 serve the station.