Station Name: BELMONT
1914 1:2,500 OS map. At this time there was no residential development of the area and no requirement for an intermediate station on the Stanmore branch. Belmont did not eist.
1937 1:2,500 OS map. The survey for this map was made in 1936 during the reconstruction of the station. The island platform has been built but the new platform building and street level buildinng have yet to be constructed. There is only one through line, the down line stops at the south end of the platform and has noit yet been joined to to the remainde of the down line because the access path from Kenton Lane custs across it.
1947 1:2,500 OS map. This is a revised version of the previous map with no resurvey. The station is now complete in its rebuilt form and includes a signal box at the north end of the platform building.
1962 1:2,500 OS map. The street level building is on one side of the Kenton Lane bridge. From there is a footbridge and steps down to the island platform. My this date the line had been singled.
An ACV/BUT 3-car railbus set waits at Belmont in April 1954. ACV was a joint project been AEC and Park Royal Vehicles, the former handling the running gear and the latter the bodywork. ACV is not to be confused with BUT (British United Traction) which was an AEC - Leyland joint venture concerned with diesel engine and trolleybus manufacture. Nicknamed 'Flying Bricks' these trains were actually diesel multiple units albeit made up of 4-wheeled vehicles but, obviously, could only multiple with themselves. They comprised double-ended driving motor cars and intermediate non-driving trailer cars and could operate singly (driving motors), as 2-car sets (two driving motors, one of which was a brake) or, as seen here, 3-car sets. This flexibility gave them a distinct advantage over the later BR diesel railbuses which, with the arguable exception of the Waggon und Maschinenbau railbuses, could only operate singly. The set seen here at Belmont was the prototype used initially for demonstration purposes in a number of areas, including the West Midlands and on the Allhallows branch in Kent, but the type in general was usually associated with the London area. The prototype differed to the production examples in that it had half-drop windows and lower bodyside skirts, both these features being just visible here. Production examples lacked the skirts and had sliding window vents similar to those on contemporary road buses and thus had a slightly more modern appearance. The prototype set appeared in 1952 and wore a rather dire two-tone grey livery with red waistband. It is seen in this condition at Belmont and also visible on the end door is the car number. The set was given car numbers 1 - 3 and the vehicle facing the camera is No.1. Purchased from the makers by BR in November 1953, the set was eventually renumbered M79740/1/2 but out-of-sequence with No.1 becoming M79742. Both prototype and production cars could, and did, run in mixed formation. All were later given BR lined green livery and 'Cycling Lion' logo and the entire class became M79740 - M79750. This comprised 3 x 3-car sets plus two spare vehicles. The units appear to have been technically fairly successful but otherwise they could not be relied upon to operate track circuits (whether this was fact or mere precaution is not known) and are said to have been very rough riding. The latter is a problem with any lightweight 4-wheeled rail vehicle with a relatively short wheelbase but comparison is usually with bogie vehicles so perhaps a little unfair. The ACV 'Flying Bricks' had been taken out of service during 1959 and scrapped by the end of 1963 although there is some evidence of intermittent use in the interim, specifically by the
Civil Engineering Department.
Photo by Alan A. Jackson
Belmont station during the second half of the 1950s. One of the ACV/BUT railbus sets has arrived from Harrow and apparently disgorged a respectable number of passengers - seen on the footbridge. This train is one of the later production sets with sliding window vents and lacking bodyside skirts. These sets, 2 x 3-car plus two spare cars, had appeared in 1955 and wore BR lined green livery from new but it is not known if any were ever given 'speed whiskers'. Given that all sets were apparently out of passenger service by 1959 it is unlikely. As mentioned elsewhere, although these sets were fairly successful from the technical point of view they did have their problems so the question is begged regarding why BR apparently ignored the warning signs and purchased 22 passenger railbuses in 1958. The principle of the 4-wheeled passenger railway vehicle was to re-emerge later in the form of the LEV railbuses and 'Pacer' units but by this time, due in part to experiments conducted as part of the abortive APT project, BR had learned the lesson regarding short wheelbase 4-wheelers with unsuitable suspension arrangements.
Photo by John L. Smith
BR Standard 2MT 2-6-2T No.84002 and ex-LMS push-and-pull set waits at Belmont to return to Harrow & Wealdstone, the driver having repositioned himself from the driving trailer to the locomotive footplate. The photographer can only recall the date as being 'around 1963'. Steam passenger services ended on the line in December 1962 and this view appears to have been taken during summertime so perhaps dates from the second half of 1962. Following the cessation of steam, DMUs took over until closure and were usually Park Royal Class 103s. Despite Belmont station having a rather moribund atmosphere it was, at this time, quite well maintained but business was not apparently brisk enough to warrant Wymans kiosk being open. No.84002 was a Bletchley locomotive at this time and was once a regular performer on services to Buckingham. The class was based on the LMS Ivatt 2MT tanks and comprised thirty examples, No.84002 being new in August 1953 and withdrawn in April 1965. She was scrapped the following year and no class members survived into preservation. However what would have been the next class member, No.84030, is at the time of writing being constructed by the Bluebell Railway from Standard 2MT No.78059, this type being the tender version of the same locomotive. The 84xxx tanks (together, it is thought, with a few of the Ivatt types) very nearly escaped the scrapman in that they were considered for transfer to the Isle of Wight to replace the O2 tanks in use there. Had they have done so it is highly likely a large number would have eventually entered preservation but, like the Belmont branch, this assured future was not to be.
Photo by John Carter
DMU at Belmont Station looking south in 1964, shortly before closure.
Photo by Terry Tracey
The last train at Belmont on 3rd October 1964
Photo by Norman Balch from picadilly-line.org web site
Belmont Station looking north in April 1966 shortly before the buildings were demolished
Photo by J. E. Connor
Belmont station footbridge and street level building in spring 1966 shortly before
the buildings were demolished
Photo by Ted Burgess
Belmont Station looking north in June 1968
Photo by Nick Catford