'Ghost' railway station uncovered in London

A “ghost” station closed a century ago has been uncovered by engineers during work on a £6.5bn rail project in London.

Southwark Park station in south London was only transited by passengers from 1902 to 1915 before it closed for good, but now engineers building the Bermondsey Dive Under as part of the Thameslink Programme have discovered the former ticket hall and platforms.

Greg Thornett, project manager, said: “We uncovered the footings for the former platforms while we were preparing the top of the viaduct for new track and we are now working up in the roof space of the former ticket hall to fill in the old sky lights, ready to carry the final track alignment.

“Much of the existing stretch of viaduct will be replaced by the ramps into and out of the new dive under, but the arch that used to house the old booking hall will remain.”

Perched on a viaduct above Rotherhithe New Road, Southwark Park was one of several stations in the area, including Spa Road, closed as a result of competition from trams and buses and the coming of the First World War.

Artist's impression of the Bermondsey Dive Under rail plan

The Thameslink Programme worth £6.5bn and sponsored by the Government is expected to rebuild much of the railway from New Cross Gate through London Bridge and on to Blackfriars and St Pancras.

“The Bermondsey Dive Under is a key part of the Thameslink Programme, creating the railway necessary to provide a frequent and reliable service through London Bridge and make a huge difference to passengers’ journeys, cutting journey times and making the services more reliable,” Thornett said.

The Bermondsey Dive Under will see two Victorian viaducts partially-demolished and rebuilt to allow Charing Cross trains from South East London and Kent to dive down to almost street level, under a new route carrying Thameslink services from Croydon and back up again.

The project should be completed by 2018.

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