Station Name: BINGHAM ROAD
[Source: Nick Catford]

Date opened: 1.7.1906
Location: On the west side of Bingham Road
Company on opening: South Eastern Railway
Date closed to passengers: 16.5.1983
Date closed completely: 16.5.1983
Company on closing: British Rail (Southern Region)
Present state: Demolished - the station, embankment and bridge removed and replaced by a tramway at street level. The only evidence of the station is a small section of brick wall that formed one side of the stairs to the 'up' platform.
County: Surrey
OS Grid Ref: TQ342662
Date of visit: September 1981, May 1983, Early 1984, Autumn 1984, January 1985 & January 2005

Notes: On 1st July 1906 a new halt was opened between Coombe Lane and Woodside in an attempt to attract more passengers to the Selsdon Line. The station was originally going to be called Addiscombe Park but by the time it opened this had been changed to Bingham Road Halt. The halt had two timber platforms made our old sleepers and no buildings but it was short lived. closing on 15th March 1915 as an economy measure during WW1 and did not reopen after the war.

When the Selsdon line was electrified in 1935 because of the development in the area Bingham Road Halt was rebuilt as a station with brick entrances on Bingham Road with covered stairways on either side of the bridge leading up to the platforms which consisted of pre-fabricated concrete panels supported on concrete piles driven into the embankment and
sheltered by glazed wood and steel canopies. There were still no additional buildings on the platforms and there were no freight facilities at the station.

Track lifting started in the summer of 1984 and by the end of the year Bingham Road Station had been largely demolished. Construction of the Croydon Tramlink started in January 1997. At Bingham Road this involved the removal of the embankment and the bridges over Bingham Road and Addiscombe Road. As originally planned the new tram station would have retained the name Bingham Road. The track
was re-laid at street level and a new tram station was built on the north side of Bingham Road, the original station having been on the south side. This station was named Addiscombe replacing the British Rail's Addiscombe Station which closed on 2.6.1997.

Bingham Road Station used in the Tony Hancock film 'The Rebel' where he jumps in the train and gets out the other side and into the London bound train.

The Woodside & South Croydon Railway was authorised in 1880 to build a 2 mile 28 chain link from the South Eastern Railway's Mid Kent line at Woodside to a junction with the the Croydon & Oxted Joint (LBSCR & SER) line which opened on the 10th March 1884. The Woodside & South Croydon Railway opened on 19th August 1885 with an intermediate station at Coombe Lane and a junction station with the Oxted line at Selsdon Road. The main engineering feature on the line were three contiguous tunnels under the Addington Hills, Woodside (266 yards), Park Hill (122 yards) and Coombe Lane (157 yards). Rolling stock was supplied by the South Eastern Railway who ran the service until the London Brighton & South Coast Railway took over at the beginning of 1887.

The line had a chequered career from the offset; the first proposal to close came in 1895. With increasing competition from trams and busses in the early 1900's Kitson Railmotors were introduced to try and improve passenger numbers. At the same time two new halts were opened, Spencer Road Halt between Selsdon Road and Coombe Lane and Bingham Road Halt
between Coombe Lane and Woodside. Both were very basic built of old sleepers with no buildings. Bingham Road was sited close to the tram terminus in Lower Addiscombe Road and was well used.

Sign from Bingham Road - received from Richard Clark
Although passenger numbers improved it was not enough and with losses running at over £2000 a year the passenger service was withdrawn as a wartime economy measure in 1915 when the Railmotor service was withdrawn. Coombe Lane and Selsdon Road remained open for some through trains until 1916 but the new halts were closed.

For a while the line was used to store surplus goods wagons but after four years a daily goods service calling at Woodside and Selsdon Road was introduced. In 1927 the track was re-laid which brought speculation about the restoration of the passengers service, this didn't happen but the line became part of a new through route to the south coast and into Kent for excursions and special services. Oxted line as far as Sanderstead to allow trains to reverse. Coombe Lane was rebuilt and was rebuilt and renamed Coombe Road and Bingham Road Halt was rebuilt as a station. Initially it was going to be renamed Ashburton but on opening it retained its original name of Bingham Road. Selsdon Road was renamed Selsdon while Spencer Road Halt was not reinstated and the remains of the station were cleared away. The new electric service started on 30th September 1935.

The early enthusiasm was however short lived with disappointing passenger numbers bring a reduction of the service during WW2 with still further reductions after the war when off peak trains terminated at Elmers End. With no improvement during the 1950's closure was announced for 4th March 1963. A local pressure group was formed to fight the closure claiming there was no alternative and after several public meetings the Ministry of Transport rejected the closure plans because of the hardship it would cause to the 650 daily passengers using the line. With no improvements the Saturday service was withdrawn in January 1967 and in 1976 all through trains to London were withdrawn reducing the line to a shuttle service between Sanderstead and Elmers End, seven years later the line finally closed on 13th May 1983. The track was lifted during the summer of 1984 and by the autumn of that year Bingham Road and
Coombe Road stations had been demolished. A short section of track between Selsdon and the footbridge at Spencer Road was retained to serve the Selsdon Oil Siding. This finally closed in 1993 and although heavily overgrown the track is still there as is the down platform at Selsdon.

In 1986 a study of Greater London transport was undertaken by London Transport and British Rail, one of its proposals was the reintroduction of trams in the Croydon area to ease traffic congestion and to provide a service into New Addington which was poorly served by pubic transport. In 1990 Croydon Council and London Transport began working together to
promote the Tramlink project which received considerable public support.

In 1986 a study of Greater London transport was undertaken by London Transport and British Rail, one of its proposals was the reintroduction of trams in the Croydon area to ease traffic congestion and to provide a service into New Addington which was poorly served by pubic transport. In 1990 Croydon Council and London Transport began working together to promote the Tramlink project which received considerable public support.

In November 1991 the Croydon Tramlink Bill was submitted to Parliament and received Royal Assent on 21 July 1994, allowing London Regional Transport to authorise the construction of Tramlink. Three routes were to be built, Croydon - Beckenham Junction, Croydon - new Addington and Wimbledon - Elmers End. As the lines from New Addington, Beckenham and Elmers End converged on Croydon (click here for map) they would utilise almost the entire length of the former Elmers End to Selsdon railway line with the three lines joining at a new junction at

The site of Bingham Road Station in January 2005
Photo by Chris Fletcher
Sandilands from where they would run into central Croydon. The first Tramlink route to New Addington opened on 10th June 2000 with the line to Beckenham through Addiscombe following on 23rd May.

For a full history and photographs of the Woodside and South Croydon Railway see the Transport of Delight web site. Click here for a photo gallery.

See also Unofficial Croydon Tramlink & Disused Railways and Eighties Rail Heaven web sites. Tickets from Michael Stewart & Brian Halford

Further reading: Croydon's Railways by M W G Skinner - Kingfisher 1985 ISBN 0 046184 14 3
and Croydon Light Rail (Tramlink) a report considered by the Highways & Transportation Planning, Resources, Fiancee & Policy Committees at their meetings on 27.2.1991 & 15.5.1991

To see other stations on the Elmers End to Selsdon Line click on station name: Elmers End, Woodside, Coombe Road, Spencer Road Halt & Selsdon - see also Park Hill Tunnel

The original Bingham Road Halt had timber platforms and no buildings

1912 1:2,500 OS map

A busy day at Bingham Road in October 1935 shortly after the station was reopened
Photo from Croydon Advertiser

Bingham Road station looking north in 1950s.
Photo from John Mann collection

An unusual view of Bingham Road station seen from an office window in Lower
Addiscombe Road in 1957.
Photo by Rowland Feakins

Bingham Road looking north in June 1981
Photo by Nick Catford

Looking north along the 'up' platform at Bingham Road Station on the last
day of public service - 13th May 1983
Photo by Paul Lane

Bingham Road Station shortly after the track was lifted in early 1984
Photo by Nick Catford

Most of the station was demolished by the autumn of 1984
Photo by Nick Catford

The site of Bingham Road Station looking south in January 2005. The tramway is at street level while the original Bingham Road Station was on an embankment.
Photo by Chris Fletcher

For more photographs of Bingham Road Station click here




[Source: Nick Catford]

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