Class 395 Javelin arriving at Platform 2 in 2014
|Location||Gravesend, Borough of Gravesham|
|Classification||DfT category C2|
|Opened||30 July 1849|
Train services are operated by Southeastern and Thameslink. During Christmas 2013, a major overhaul of the lines and platforms changed the four line, two platform layout into two through lines and a western facing bay platform.
The first railway to arrive in Gravesend was the Gravesend & Rochester Railway (G&RR) who had purchased the Thames and Medway Canal and its tunnel between Strood and Higham. The G&RR ran the first train to the then terminus at Gravesend (adjacent to the Canal Basin) on 10 February 1845. On 30 July 1849 the line was extended to North Kent East Junction on the South Eastern Railway (SER) and thence to London Bridge.
There was a second Gravesend station (later known as Gravesend West Street then later still Gravesend West) opened by SER's rivals, London, Chatham and Dover Railway (LCDR). It was the end of a branch off the LCDR's main line and it allowed access to Victoria. journey times were uncompetitive and when the two companies merged in 1899, the branch was soon relegated to a secondary line and closed in 1968. To differentiate from this other station Gravesend was named Gravesend Central for a long time.
High speed HS1 services to London St Pancras International were introduced in December 2009 and proved highly successful. The station is now seen as a major interchange for metro and high speed services. There is far greater customer patronage for high speed services to St Pancras from Gravesend in comparison to nearby Ebbsfleet International, where usage is considered modest at best. This might be due (in part) to the sizeable London-bound commuter population in and around Gravesham, as opposed to domestic passenger use at Ebbsfleet, from elsewhere in North West Kent. Additionally services between Maidstone West and London St Pancras have since been added to SouthEastern's High Speed route, which stop at Strood and Gravesend prior to joining the high speed lines at Ebbsfleet.
In 2013 a £19 million overhaul of the station, platforms and lines involved the demolition of a former water tank base on the southern platform of the station (Platform 1 at this time), the installation of a new lift/stair bridge complex towards the western end of the station, the removal of the early 20th century footbridge that spanned the lines close to the ticket halls and a major remodelling of the lines and platforms.
The station's track layout was substantially altered in December 2013. This was primarily for extending the current platforms to accommodate 12 coach trains as opposed to the previous 10 coach limit. Platform 1 has been extended and converted to a London facing bay platform and renumbered as Platform '0'. A new single face central Platform 1 is located on the site of what was the former up 'through' road. Services from Medway and Faversham, including London bound high speed trains use this platform. This new platform has bi directional workings and capability. Platform 2 remained numbered as '2', however, it lost its turnback capability and thus caters solely for coast bound services. Services terminating at Gravesend from London Charing Cross or London Cannon Street stations terminate on Platform 0.
The previous historic but narrow central footbridge, has been replaced with a large sheltered bridge with lifts, at the London end of the station and serving all three platforms.
In December 2008, the local authority for Gravesend (Gravesham Council), was formally requested by Crossrail and the Department for Transport, to sanction the revised Crossrail Safeguarding. This safeguarding provides for a potential service extension, from the current south of Thames terminus at Abbey Wood, to continue via the North Kent Line to Gravesend station. The Crossrail route extension from Abbey Wood to Gravesend and Hoo Junction, remains on statute. With current services from Gravesend to London Bridge, Waterloo East and London Charing Cross being supplemented by highspeed trains from the end of 2009 to St Pancras, the potential in having Crossrail services from central London, London Heathrow, Maidenhead and/or Reading, terminating at Gravesend, would not only raise the station to hub status but greatly contribute towards the town's regeneration.
The typical off-peak service from the station is:
Typical off-peak services are:
- 2tph (trains per hour) to London St Pancras via Ebbsfleet International and Stratford International
- 2tph to London Charing Cross Semi-fast service via Sidcup
- 2tph to London Victoria via Bexleyheath
- 2tph to Luton via Greenwich, London Bridge, St Pancras International, St Albans City and Luton Airport
- 2tph to Rainham
- 2tph to Faversham, of which 1tph is extended to Margate, Ramsgate, Deal and Dover Priory
- 4tpd using Class 395 Javelin units operate to St Pancras and Maidstone West via Strood.
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
High Speed 1
North Kent Line
via Bus Link
|Gravesend - Tilbury Ferry||Terminus|
Hoo Peninsula branch
North Kent Line
North Kent Line
North Kent Line
- Annual estimated intercity rail passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at this station from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
- "Gravesend station improvement unlocks capacity improvements in Kent". 6 January 2014. Archived from the original on 16 January 2014. Retrieved 17 January 2014.
- "High-speed trains start from Maidstone". Kent Online. Kent Messenger Group. 20 May 2011. Archived from the original on 24 May 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2011.
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