The name Brixton is thought to originate from Brixistane, meaning the stone of Brixi, a Saxon lord. Brixi is thought to have erected a boundary stone to mark the meeting place of the ancient hundred court of Surrey. The area remained undeveloped until the beginning of the 19th century, the main settlements being near Stockwell, Brixton Hill and Coldharbour Lane. With the opening of Vauxhall Bridge in 1816, improved access to Central London led to a process of suburban development. The largest single development, and one of the last in suburban character, was Angell Town, laid out in the 1850s on the east side of Brixton Road, and so named after a family that owned land in Lambeth from the late 17th century until well into the 20th. One of a few surviving windmills in London, built in 1816, is just off Brixton Hill and surrounded by houses built during Brixton's Victorian expansion.
The first wave of immigrants (492 individuals) who formed the British African-Caribbean community arrived in 1948 at Tilbury Docks on the HMT Empire Windrush from Jamaica and were temporarily housed in the Clapham South deep shelter. The nearest Labour Exchange (Jobcentre) was on Coldharbour Lane, Brixton, and the new arrivals spread out into local accommodation. Many immigrants only intended to stay in Britain for a few years, but although a number returned to the Caribbean, the majority remained to settle permanently. The arrival of the passengers has become an important landmark in the history of modern Britain, and the image of West Indians filing off its gangplank has come to symbolise the beginning of modern British multicultural society. In 1998 the area in front of the Tate Library in Brixton was renamed "Windrush Square" to mark the 50th anniversary of the arrival of the Windrush.
With the arrival of the railway in Brixton in the 1870s a building boom set in and Brixton developed into a major shopping centre. The first purpose-built department store, Bon Marché, was opened on Brixton Road in 1877 and Electric Avenue was one of the first shopping arcades to have electric lighting. The now famous Brixton Market began in Atlantic Road and was moved to Station Road in the 1920s to ease traffic congestion. Brixton Market is open every day, selling a range of Afro-Caribbean products and reflects other communities in the local area with Indian and Vietnamese supermarkets and South American butchers amongst the shops and stalls. London Farmers' Markets opened a farmers market on Brixton Station Road in September 2009. It is open every Sunday from 10 am to 2 pm.
The station was opened on 23 July 1971 by the London Transport Executive. From the ticket hall, three escalators take passengers to and from the platforms. There are also passenger lifts between street level, the ticket hall and the platforms to provide step free access. The station is laid out as a two-track terminus with a scissors crossover north of the station, and the line continues for a short distance south of the station platforms to form a pair of sidings. These are used for the overnight stabling of a pair of trains, which then form the mornings' first two northbound services. The station has lifts, escalators, wi-fi and help points.
Connections: London Bus routes 2, 3, 35, 45, 59, 109, 118, 133, 159, 333, 355, 415, 432, 689 and 690 and P4 and night routes N2, N3, N35, N109 and N133 serve the station.