Uxbridge (Vine Street) Branch Line

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Uxbridge (Vine Street) Branch Line
Uxbridge Vine Street 1856–1962
Cowley 1904–1962
Grand Junction Canal
West Drayton
Great Western Main Line
Left arrow ReadingPaddington Right arrow
Staines & West Drayton Railway

The Uxbridge (Vine Street) Branch Line was a railway line between West Drayton and Uxbridge. The line branched from the Great Western Main Line at West Drayton and ran two miles north to Uxbridge Vine Street.



Construction of the 2.6-mile (4.2 km) single track broad gauge line began in 1854, and it opened to passengers in 1856. The track was relaid as standard gauge in 1871 and doubled in 1880[dubious ]. The one intermediate station at Cowley opened in 1904.


The line started at a bay platform at West Drayton, curved sharply north and had a junction with the Staines branch. It then climbed at 1 in 116 over the Grand Union Canal and reached Cowley 1.5 miles (2.4 km) from West Drayton. The final mile was partly in cutting, with two road overbridges and a final climb at 1 in 66.[1]


By 1952 there were 35 trains a day, a third of them running through to Paddington. Until 1939 two ran through to Liverpool St. They were less frequent on Sundays. Local trains were push-pull with one or two coaches. Paddington trains were worked by GWR 6100 Class and local trains by GWR 1400 Class, GWR 5400 Class, or GWR 6400 Class. There were about three goods trains a day.[2]


The line was closed to passengers in 1962 and to freight in 1964, and the track was lifted except for a short stretch to the Middlesex Oil Works, which stayed open until 1979, and the section for freight access to the truncated Staines & West Drayton Railway[3]

The site today[edit]

The stretch of land alongside Brunel University where the track ran was sold by the local council upon the line's closure to the college as it was at the time, for £65,000.[4] Otherwise a short piece of track at Cowley is one of the few remaining traces of the railway .[5]


  1. ^ Railway Magazine March 1952 p. 148
  2. ^ Railway Magazine March 1952 p. 148
  3. ^ "Uxbridge Vine Street Station". Retrieved 18 November 2008. 
  4. ^ "Annual Report 2005" (PDF). Brunel University. 2005. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  5. ^ "West Drayton – Uxbridge Vine Street". Retrieved 18 November 2008.