Following on from yesterday’s post – I was retracing my steps to Crystal Palace station. Time for a little bit of history. Crystal Palace station is located in part of Anerley and was built to serve The Crystal Palace which was relocated from Hyde Park to Sydenham Hill after the Great Exhibition of 1851. There were originally two stations built by rival railway companies to serve The Crystal Palace as you can see on this section of an Ordnance Survey map of the area, circa 1900…

Ordnance Survey map courtesy of National Library of Scotland maps and re-used under creative Commons CC-BY-NC-SA

…The station at the bottom of the map was known as Crystal Palace (Low Level) to differentiate it from the High Level station located alongside Crystal Palace Parade, opposite the palace itself.

In 1936, The Crystal Palace was destroyed by fire which resulted in a decline in passengers but both stations remained open. Bomb damage resulted in the closure of Crystal Palace High Level station during WWII and although it re-opened subsequently, with further declining traffic and reconstruction being needed, it closed in 1954. It was demolished in 1961. That left only Crystal Palace (Low Level) which is the station that remains in use today.

Now I should apologise. There is a lot of historical interest around Crystal Palace Park but that wasn’t the purpose of my visit on this occasion. I think I will have to return sometime soon and do a proper photographic post on the subject of The Crystal Palace, its park and the stations.

Returning to my visit last Thursday, having disembarked from the train I took the opportunity to photograph the main station building. If you look again at the map, this shot is from the platforms on the line leaving the station to the south…

Crystal Palace Station

The large retaining wall encloses the stairs to the platforms and supports an overall roof across the through and bay platforms of the line from Sydenham (visible in the top right corner of the map). The small station building in the right foreground serviced the through tracks of the line from Beckenham Junction to Gipsy Hill and also two further bay platforms that were located where you can see grass beyond the chain link fence on the right. Sticking up above the station is a mast. That is Crystal Palace TV Transmitter, and it serves the whole of London.

The ground rises steeply beyond the station buildings to the summit of Sydenham Hill. As a result, the railway line plunges into a tunnel immediately to the east of the station…

377143 at Crystal Palace

…377143 emerges with a service to West Croydon.

To reach the platforms from street level, you have to descend a lot of stairs within the station. These give an opportunity for the photographer to play with light…

Lets Go Spotting

I haven’t yet mentioned why this station is on my Project list. It is the terminus for London Overground services from Dalston Junction. Here’s 378139 waiting to begin its return trip…

378139 at Crystal Palace

I took a Southern train back to Clapham Junction with the intention of trying to get another Class 455 operated service from there but that turned out problematical as a points failure at Victoria was causing disruption. After assessing the options, I decided to head back to Waterloo and then home via Waterloo East, London Bridge and Farringdon. At Farringdon I decided that the wait for a service calling at Kentish Town was a bit too long, so I took a train to Moorgate and picked up the Northern Line home from there. It proved to be a prescient decision for Kentish Town station was closed when we passed through!

I hope to be out on another Freedom Pass trip on Tuesday and, with luck, get some more Southern Class 455 photos during their last week of service😀👍

Full of the joys of Spring? Or up and down like the weather? Here’s my Midweek Madness entry with thanks to Cee for the challenge. All the photos were taken in March this year 😎

An overcast start to the month with intermittent rain. I caught G-ZOLA scud-running over Potters Bar while photographing the football…

G-ZOLA is a Diamond DA-42NG Twin Star.

Next week saw the weather turn bright and sunny and the birds began collecting nesting materials…

…A Magpie between the tracks at Upper Holloway Station picks up some twigs. Its mate was doing the same on the other side too.

By the middle of the month it was wall to wall sunshine though the midday shadows remained long…

…and it was cold in the shade. I joked that we were ‘Sideways to the Sun’😉

By the 21st some people had got their sunglasses and spring clothes out of the wardrobe…

…but others were still wearing coats.

It couldn’t last forever – the month closed out with overcast skies, gusting winds and snow…

The well laid plans of mice and men…🤣 I have a routine for my project and posts based on two outings a week. The first is on Monday or Tuesday and the second on Thursday or Friday. The ‘or’s allow for problems with the transport system and extreme weather issues. So, my last update covered my outing on Monday and this one should have been appearing on Saturday or Sunday to cover what I did on Thursday or Friday. It should be simple shouldn’t it? 🤨

Lets talk Tuesday and why my day of rest was disturbed. I was planning to cut my hair on Tuesday. I’d got things set up when around 9:45 I got a call. Daaad!.. Dad!.. It was my Wife – Epi always calls me Dad when she needs a favour🙄 It turned out that she had left her medication at home – please could I bring it down to her office. So that was that – off to Knightsbridge 😐 I’m not one to allow a crisis to become, well – a crisis… More an opportunity. I decided to grasp the nettle and take out a couple of in-town termini on my way home after I’d delivered the pills.

Knightsbridge – Piccadilly Line. What to do from there? I decided to go to Earls Court to pick up a District Line Train eastbound – the target was Tower Hill. This is a terminus for trains from Wimbledon. As luck would have it, the first train to pull in at Earls Court was for Tower Hill. It looks a long run from Earls Court with so many stops, but the stations are quite close together so it only takes a little over 20 minutes. Here’s my train in the middle platform at Tower Hill…

Up above it was very sunny and very hazy…

I did my best to dodge the selfie-driven tourists along with the generally confused that inhabit such open spaces and made my way around to St Katherine’s Dock and a quick look at the cluttered view of Tower Bridge…

Then I was off to visit the Docklands Light Railway, or DLR. This terminates at Tower Gateway, which is close to Fenchurch Street Station. There are 2 entrances – the main one is on Minories but there is another on Mansell Street. I photographed a bus on the 100 route at the Tower Hill stop on Mansell Street…

…before crossing over to find the entrance to Tower Gateway…

Let’s be honest – those stairs are a hefty climb for me in my current state of fitness and at my age. I’d strongly recommend that anyone of advancing years uses the Minories entrance where there are escalators and lifts👍 But – I’m supposed to be doing this project to get fitter, so the drag up the stairs was a good thing… I think 🤨

Here’s Tower Gateway Station platforms…

The DLR line is only a short single track stub off the Bank branch and the trains filter in between services to/ from there. All services from this station go to Beckton. Here’s Unit 118 with 122 and 137 arriving…

…a 6 car train and needed because the DLR is well used. The railway tracks on the left of the photo are the line from Fenchurch Street.

My task now was to head home – time was ticking. So I took this DLR service to Poplar. There are lots of photo opportunities there…

…and I will come back for some more shots another day. But now it was time for a DLR train up to Stratford and then a London Overground train from there to Camden Road before getting the Northern Line back home.

In case anyone wonders how riding around by train is helping my fitness.. That was 7 miles of walking! 😇