Bexleyheath line

The Bexleyheath line opened on 1 May 1895. There were twelve trains per day to and from Charing Cross. It was built by landowners wanting to enhance the value of their agricultural land for house-building development. Large embankments and cuttings and even a tunnel were needed as the land was not flat, making it an expensive line to build. Among the shareholders were Alfred Bean of Danson (landowner), Charles Beadle (a coal and corn merchant and later coach builder from Crayford Creek), and George Mence Smith (oilman and owner of seventy hardware stores in the south-east).

 

On opening day a brass band met at the Broadway, Bexleyheath at 7pm and played whilst marching to Barnehurst Station. After playing a selection of music on the platform the band travelled by steam train back to Bexleyheath Station. Another selection of waltzes and polkas was played before the band returned to the Broadway, Bexleyheath.

 

The stations on the Bexleyheath line serving the Bexley Borough are:

 

Falconwood - opened 1936 to cater for a demand for services from residents of new housing estates

 

Welling - opened 1895, rebuilt 1931

 

Bexleyheath - opened 1895

 

Barnehurst - opened 1895. The district of Barnehurst takes its name from the station which was built in the middle of the woods on land owned by Col. Barne. The nearest settlement to it in 1895 was Northumberland Heath.

 

 

Sources:

The Bexleyheath Railway at Eltham 1895-1995 by Gus White (Eltham Society, 1996)

The Story of Barnehurst, by E. O. Thomas (Bexley Council, 1998)

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