GREENWICH PARK - NUNHEAD

(1871 - 1917)

The LCD opened this line in 1871 with stations at Nunhead, Brockley Lane, Lewisham Road, and Blackheath Hill.
Greenwich Park wasn't actually reached until 1888.

Declining passenger numbers caused its closure in 1917 although the section from Nunhead to a point just east of Lewisham Road station was reopened to provide the SE with an alternative route into central London. To facilitate that, a connection was made with the SE railway north of their station at Lewisham.

For a 1930s map still showing the line and its stations (Lewisham Road station is visible but not named), click here.

The route of the railway is very difficult to pick out on modern maps, however the National Library of Scotland have provided an excellent facility for comparing old maps with modern maps (and including an aerial view). Click here for the railway detailed below, starting at Lewisham Road station.

 


 

 

Lewisham Road station remains in Jan 2003.
The station is by the junction of Loampit Hill and Tyrwhitt Road (i.e. nowhere near Lewisham Road itself).

(photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Looking east.

(photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

Eastwards looking view of Lewisham Road station site. The line veers off to the right to join the SE line down to Lewisham and beyond. The original line carried straight on, passing over the SE line just south of St.John's station.

(photo: June 2006)

 

 

 

The station building surviving as a wonderfully odd furniture and other household items shop.

(photo: June 2006)

For more info: www.disused-stations.org.uk

 

 

 

 

 

 

It would have been a bit foolish to have gone looking for tangible remains of a line that had closed 86 years previously. Astonishingly though, at the time of this visit, there were two small sections of embankment remaining where the line crossed over Brookmill Road. This photo was taken looking back in the Nunhead direction.

(photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

The remains of the embankment in Brookmill Park, running from left to right.

From here the line continued on viaduct over the Ravensbourne river and Coldbath Street, then in cutting under Morden St and Lewisham Road to reach Blackheath Hill station.

(photo: Aug 2013)

 

 

 

The location of the Blackheath Hill station building. The front of the station building was level with the wall seen in the photo. The imprint of the side of the station building can be seen on the wall of the block of flats on the right. Note however that the station building was rebuilt after closure, although some parts of the old station building were incorporated into the rebuilt version.
The entire site was cleared in 1987.

For further reading, see Disused-Stations.

(photo: Jun 2012)

 

 

 

 

 

 

One of the rare remnants: a retaining wall just north of the Blackheath Hill station site at Lindsell St. This railway is the complete antithesis of a railway like the Northern Heights, which is still clearly a disused railway with most of its track bed and some of its platforms and station buildings still intact. This line provides a very different experience in that astute detective work is needed to find any of it at all.

(photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

 

 

 

There are so few clues to indicate the existence of the line at street level, that it was even difficult to follow its path with a print out of the 1898 map of its route. One of the subtle pointers is the gaps in the rows of old houses, now filled with more modern developments. Or, as in this case, the railway cutting was filled in and replaced by a line of allotments.
Looking north-west from Prior Street.

 (photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

Virtually identical view of the Prior Street allotments as above but showing the railway wall on the left.

(photo: Aug 2013)

 

 

 

Circus Street looking back toward the Blackheath/Lewisham direction. The building directly in front comprises of two houses that on first inspection look as if they were built at the same time as the houses on the rest of the street. However, they are much newer and were built on the route of the filled-in line. The line used to pass underneath the street.

(photo: Aug 2013)

 

 

 

 

 

 

Facing the other way at an original railway wall on Circus Street. The wall shows evidence of rebuilding to allow the provision of a gate in the centre, yet some of the original bricks still survive.

 (photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

Ten years later and not a lot has changed.

(photo: Aug 2013)

 

 

 

Looking over the wall reveals a further in-filled part of the line. This small section continues up to Royal Hill.

(photo: Aug 2013)

 

 

 

 

 

 

View from the other end looking back in the Lewisham direction.

 (photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

 

 

 

For what it's worth: the site of the Greenwich Park terminus (in more of a prime location than the existing Greenwich station). The station building was at the front end of the platform area - the site is now occupied by an Ibis Hotel.

(photo: Jan 2003)

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Ibis Hotel on the site of the original station building.

(photo: Apr 2006)

 


 

West London Line