Clapham Junction Railway Station

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South-west entrance of the station
View from the pedestrian bridge to the extensive track system

Clapham Junction is a train station in south-west London , more precisely in Battersea , part of the London Borough of Wandsworth . The station is considered to be the largest and busiest in all of Great Britain . More than 2000 trains pass this station every day, mostly suburban trains, most of which also stop here. During rush hour, more than 220 trains an hour stop. In 2013, 23.623 million passengers used the station.


All trains that end at Waterloo station pass through Clapham Junction, as do almost all trains that end at Victoria . Trains from South West Trains , Gatwick Express and Southern serve this station on their way to South and South West England. The West London Line and the Inner South London Line , on which trains operated by the London Overground company , also branch off in Clapham Junction .


The station has 16 through tracks, numbered from 2 to 17 (track 1 was closed and dismantled) and consists of two groups: the first group with tracks 2 to 6 points in a south-westerly direction (to Richmond / Hounslow), the second Group (tracks 7 to 17) in a southerly direction (to Wimbledon / Croydon). Both groups are separated by service tracks that branch out in a fan shape and lead to a parking area west of the station.

The main entrance is on St. John's Hill on the south side of the property. A pedestrian tunnel only 4.6 meters wide leads to the other side at the western end of the tracks. The northern exit is not open all the time. During rush hour there is a lot of crowd here. In contrast, a covered pedestrian bridge over the eastern side of the tracks offers plenty of space. However, there is no direct access to the station building from there.


Clapham Junction station (southern group of tracks, looking north) with electric multiple units from South West Trains (1st – 3rd from left) and Southern (1st – 3rd from right)
Pedestrian bridge between platforms 8 and 9

Before the railroad era, the area around what is now the train station was extremely rural and specialized in growing lavender for the perfume industry . The hill east of the station is called Lavender Hill . The station was built in 1863 as a joint project between the London and South Western Railway and the London, Brighton and South Coast Railway . This created a transfer option to four railway lines that had been opened between 1838 and 1860 and branched out in this area. Extensions to the station were inaugurated in 1874 and 1876.

The station was halfway between Battersea and Clapham. While the name Battersea was mostly thought of dirty industry and impoverished workers, Clapham was a nice neighborhood with high land prices. The railway companies, which mainly wanted to attract customers from the middle and upper classes, therefore decided to choose the more attractive Clapham as the station name. The new train station accelerated the development of the surrounding area. In 1840 6,000 people lived here, in 1910 there were already 168,000.

In a report in the SBB -Nachrichtenblatt from December 1976, the following values ​​are given in a report on this station: The number of trains within 24 hours is given as around 2400. These include around 150 freight trains that switch from the Kensington line to another part of the network. The majority are passenger trains, most of which use one of the 20 tracks that run towards London. Up to 14 signal box officers were on duty at the same time to operate the points (some of them were still mechanical points). In addition, around seven million tickets were sold each year at that time.

On the morning of December 12, 1988, a serious accident occurred southwest of the station (see also the railway accident at Clapham Junction ). In a collision between three suburban trains, 35 people were killed and more than 100 injured, some seriously. It was the worst in a series of train accidents in the Clapham Junction area between 1986 and 1997. The accumulation of collisions and derailments was due to the extremely high stress on the outdated track and signal systems. Renovation work began in the late 1990s. The modernization was completed in May 2011 with the opening of a new entrance and nine elevators.

In 2012, the London Overground route network was expanded to include the Inner South London Line , which runs trains from the East London Line to Clapham Junction.


The planned construction of the Crossrail 2 S-Bahn line is expected to add an underground train station to Clapham Junction in the early 2030s.

Web links

Commons : Clapham Junction  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Estimates of station usage. (Excel, 1.1 MB) Office of Rail Regulation, 2014, accessed on July 28, 2014 (English).
  2. ^ A. Samuel: Station upgrade gives Clapham Junction a big lift ,, May 20, 2011, accessed December 25, 2011
  3. ^ Clapham Junction station. Crossrail 2, 2018, accessed April 1, 2018 .
Previous station National Rail Next train station
Queenstown Road
  South West Trains
South Western Main Line
(via Wimbledon)
  South West Trains
South Western Main Line
(via Putney)
  Wandsworth Town
Battersea Park   Southern
South London Lines
  Wandsworth Common
West Brompton   Southern
West London Line
  London Overground
West London Line
  Wandsworth Road
East London Line

Coordinates: 51 ° 27 ′ 51 ″  N , 0 ° 10 ′ 12 ″  W.