Bushey railway station
Bushey Railway Station, 1 May 2009
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|Number of platforms||6|
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Bushey railway station serves the towns of Bushey and Oxhey and is situated on the Watford DC Line, 8 km (5.0 mi) north of Harrow & Wealdstone. The station was renamed from "Bushey & Oxhey" to "Bushey" on 6 May 1974, even though it is actually sited in the neighbouring town of Oxhey, and the nearest part of Bushey (Bushey Village) is over a mile away. Even so it was late in the 1980s before signage at the station reflected this change.
During the war years of 1939-1945 the station was often known as "Ampersand railway station" - this was due to a typically bureaucratic application of emergency regulations. To hinder enemy troops in the event of an invasion it was ordered that all station names should be painted out on station name-boards, and this was interpreted at Bushey & Oxhey to mean the words 'Bushey' and 'Oxhey' but not the '&'. For the duration of the war, therefore, the station proudly bore the designation '&' - a tribute to official thinking everywhere!
On 16 February 1980, faulty trackwork caused nine coaches of an express Euston to Manchester passenger train to derail as it passed through the station. Three coaches were overturned and 19 passengers were seriously injured. The track required extensive repairs and did not reopen fully until 25 February 1980.
On 20 April 1980, a passenger train heading for Bletchley derailed immediately before Bushey station after hitting track maintenance machinery. The leading bogie of the Class 310 EMU derailed, but the train remained upright and damage was slight. One member of the track maintenance team sustained a broken pelvis.
On 8 August 1996, the Watford rail crash occurred around one mile north of the station.
Buildings and facilities
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The platforms for the local DC service, numbers 1 and 2, are curved away and apart from the mainline route. This is because the local service loops to the west to serve Watford High Street before Watford Junction. There are four mainline platforms; one serving the down fast (platform 3), two forming an island platform between the up fast and the down slow lines (platforms 4 & 5) and one serving the up slow line (platform 6). Platforms 3 & 4 are only used when 5 & 6 are unavailable due to engineering works on the slow lines. Platform 3 is accessed via the stairway for platform 2, and is fitted with a remotely operated gate to prevent access when the platform is not in operation. No such access restrictions are in place for platform 4.
From 2000 up to 2007, the West Coast Main Line rail link to London for the Virgin Trains network had been the only source of building work at the station, where a storage yard and redundant buildings were converted into a high-voltage substation to supply the significantly higher current required for the new, higher speed, Pendolino trains.
Starting in December 2007, Transport for London began a significant upgrade programme at the station. During the following four years, the underpass was relined with plasterboard walls and corrugated steel ceilings and repainted. The doors and windows were repainted, and the old green and blue railings became orange. Areas of the floor and all of the stairways had a non-slip surface added. Extensive CCTV was installed throughout and signage was changed to London Overground standards (allegedly "temporary" (see Gallery), as at other Overground stations). The alleyway linking the entrance of the station to Kingsfield Road was upgraded, replacing the repeatedly vandalised wooden fences with metal palisade. The bicycle shed was moved from the front of the station on Pinner Road to the Eastbury Road entrance. The space at the front was converted to make a shop and newsagents.
As of 2009, London Overground are operating their new trains, British Rail Class 378s, on this service leading to much excitement among rail enthusiasts. A camera system monitoring the platform is now in use for train drivers on platform 2. This is due to the curvature of the platform preventing the driver seeing the whole train from the cabin window or the previous mirror.
Platforms 3 and 4 have been brought back into use for the December 2011 timetable, which marks some services as "front four coaches only for Bushey", allowing an improved late evening and weekend connection with London. Prior to this reinstatement, engineering works frequently meant that late-evening London Midland services were unable to stop at Bushey as a northbound platform was not available, it being overgrown after having fallen into disuse many years earlier and boarded off following its partial destruction during the crash of February 1980 when the locomotive and leading two coaches passed through the station before coming to a stand having destroyed the platform face.
For London Overground services, Monday to Sunday daytimes there is a train every 20 minutes calling at all stations to London Euston (southbound) and Watford Junction (northbound). Early morning and late night sees a half-hourly service in each direction. A more frequent service was introduced by London Overground from 22 May 2011.
For London Midland services, Monday to Saturday daytimes the half-hourly service to London Euston and Tring stops at Bushey. Evenings the hourly "all stations" Euston - Milton Keynes Central services stop here. There can sometimes be an occasional service to Birmingham New Street.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Bushey railway station.|
- "Station usage estimates". Rail statistics. Office of Rail Regulation. Please note: Some methodology may vary year on year.
- Slater, J.N., ed. (July 1974). "Notes and News: Stations renamed by LMR". Railway Magazine (London: IPC Transport Press Ltd) 120 (879): 363. ISSN 0033-8923.
- Accident report, by Department of Transport, 1981
- Accident report, by Department of Transport, 16 June 1981
- New London train services for Bushey Station, Watford Observer, 24 March 2011
- Recollection by an attending engineer.
- Accident archive from Railways Archive.
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
|Watford Junction||London Midland
West Coast Main Line
|Harrow & Wealdstone|
|Preceding station||London Overground||Following station|
towards Watford Junction
|Watford DC Line||
|Preceding station||London Underground||Following station|
towards Watford Junction
towards Elephant & Castle