Alexandra Palace railway station
Looking north from the footbridge.
Location of Alexandra Palace in Greater London
|Local authority||London Borough of Haringey|
|Managed by||Great Northern|
|Number of platforms||4|
|National Rail annual entry and exit|
|1 May 1859||Station opens as Wood Green|
|1 August 1864||Station renamed Wood Green (Alexandra Park)|
|18 March 1971||Station renamed Wood Green|
|17 May 1982||Station renamed Alexandra Palace|
|Lists of stations|
| London Transport portal
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Alexandra Palace railway station (originally named Wood Green and later Wood Green (Alexandra Park)) is in the London Borough of Haringey in north London, and is in Zone 3. The station, and all trains serving it, are operated by Great Northern. Trains mostly go to and from Moorgate on weekdays, and Kings Cross at weekends.
It is the only surviving station of three that have served Alexandra Palace. Alexandra Palace, sited actually at the palace, was on the Highgate - Alexandra Palace line, and Palace Gates (Wood Green) was on the Palace Gates Line.
Just outside the station to the north is Bounds Green Depot, used for storage and maintenance of the high speed trains used on the East Coast Main Line. A line adjacent to the station platforms is used by shunters moving carriages and engines around in the depot.
The station was opened by the Great Northern Railway (GNR) on 1 May 1859 as Wood Green, being renamed to Wood Green (Alexandra Park) in 1864. The GNR became part of the London and North Eastern Railway during the Grouping of 1923. The line then passed on to the Eastern Region of British Railways on nationalisation in 1948. The station reverted to its original name of Wood Green on 18 March 1971, but was again renamed, this time to Alexandra Palace, on 17 May 1982.
Under plans approved in 1897, the station was to be the northern terminus for the Great Northern and Strand Railway (GN&SR), a tube railway supported by the GNR which would have run underground beneath the GNR's tracks to Finsbury Park and then into central London. The next GN&SR station to the south would have been Hornsey. The GN&SR route and stations north of Finsbury Park were cancelled in 1902 when the GN&SR was taken over by Charles Yerkes' consortium which planned to merge it with the Brompton and Piccadilly Circus Railway to form the Great Northern, Piccadilly and Brompton Railway from Finsbury Park to Hammersmith (now part of the London Underground's Piccadilly line).
In Autumn 2008, a new SHERE self-service ticket machine, accepting both cash and credit cards, was installed here (and similarly at other local FCC stations). Oyster card readers were installed at the station during 2008 and activated on 2 January 2010 for use with the Oyster Pay As You Go System.
The station has old buildings on Buckingham Road, which house a refreshment kiosk and ticket machines, with a modern footbridge connection to the platforms and across the tracks to Bedford Road. On the platforms there are only rudimentary modern buildings for public use.
On 9 December 2012 the old platforms 1 and 2 were closed for reconstruction. A temporary new platform 1 was provided to the east of the up slow line. All up (London-bound) trains which stop (served from either the Welwyn or Hertford directions) did so at this platform face. On 2 April 2013 the reconstructed platform 1 opened, on the West of the up slow line as before, now numbered as platform 2. This new platform is narrower than the former and the track has been moved to the west. The old platform 2 is permanently closed and has a fence along the edge. This work is part of a scheme to provide greater segregation of stopping, semi-fast and high-speed services in the section between Alexandra Palace and Finsbury Park, to allow a greater quantum of services. A new permanent platform 1 is being constructed to replace the temporary one.
The up fast line now has no platform face at this station. The down fast is a through road, without a platform face. Platform 3 is used by northbound trains on the ECML down slow line and trains on the Hertford Loop Line use platform 4. Note that trains to/from Hertford must use the outer platform lines.
Services from the station run to Moorgate on weekdays until about 10.00pm, and into London Kings Cross after 10.00pm Mondays to Fridays and all day on Saturdays and Sundays. Normally the service uses class 313 EMUs, as these are the only units cleared to Moorgate, although on weekends sometimes class 317 EMUs are used instead. Night services see a certain number of four car (class 317 or class 365) trains scheduled to call (to/from Cambridge or Peterborough).
North of the station, the line divides, with half the trains running to Welwyn Garden City and the other half running to Hertford North or Letchworth Garden City. The typical Monday to Friday off-peak service frequency is:
- 6tph (trains per hour) (xx00/xx10/xx20/xx30/xx40/xx50) to Moorgate, calling at Hornsey, Harringay, Finsbury Park, Drayton Park, Highbury & Islington, Essex Road and Old Street. Trains typically take around 20 minutes to get to Moorgate.
- 3tph (xx00/xx20/xx40) to Welwyn Garden City, calling at New Southgate, Oakleigh Park, New Barnet, Hadley Wood, Potters Bar, Brookmans Park, Welham Green and Hatfield
- 3tph (xx10/xx30/xx50) to Hertford North, calling at Bowes Park, Palmers Green, Winchmore Hill, Grange Park, Enfield Chase, Gordon Hill, Crews Hill, Cuffley and Bayford. Of these, the xx10 departures are extended to Watton-at-Stone, Stevenage, Hitchin and Letchworth Garden City
On Saturdays and Sundays (when there is no engineering work) this drops to:
- 4tph (xx10/xx25/xx40/xx55) to London Kings Cross, calling at Hornsey, Harringay and Finsbury Park. Trains typically take around 15 minutes to get to Kings Cross.
- 2tph (xx17/xx47) to Welwyn Garden City
- 2tph (xx02/xx32) to Hertford North, with the xx32 departures extended to Stevenage.
Great Northern services between Peterborough, Cambridge and London often pass through the station non-stop, as do all East Coast, First Hull Trains and Grand Central services between London and the North. Northbound trains usually use the central line, away from the platforms, while southbound trains speed non-stop past Platform 2.
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
East Coast Main Line stopping
|Preceding station||Crossrail||Following station|
towards Central London
- "Station usage estimates". Rail statistics. Office of Rail Regulation. Please note: Some methodology may vary year on year.
- Butt 1995, p. 254
- Butt 1995, pp. 15,254
- Badsey-Ellis, Antony (2005). London's Lost Tube Schemes. Capital Transport. pp. 77 and 138. ISBN 1-85414-293-3.
- Butt, R. V. J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt, platform and stopping place, past and present (1st ed.). Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 1-8526-0508-1. OCLC 60251199.
- Jowett, Alan (2000). Jowett's Nationalised Railway Atlas (1st ed.). Penryn, Cornwall: Atlantic Transport Publishers. ISBN 0-9068-9999-0. OCLC 228266687.
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