The Anonymous Widower

Platforms 11 and 12 At Stratford

In December this year, an service hourly service called STAR will be started between Stratford and Angel Road along the Temple Mills Branch of the Lea Valley Lines via Lea Bridge, Tottenham Hale and Northumberland Park stations. Wikipedia says this about services to and from the Angel Road station.

Angel Road is only served by a number of trains every weekday to and from Stratford. No services operate at the station on weekends or public holidays. However, from December 2015 Angel Road will receive an hourly service to Stratford that will start here and vice versa, the service will be known as (STAR).

STAR services will obviously call at the new Lea Bridge station, when it opens next year.

I shall probably use the service occasionally, when I need to get home from Stratford, as Lea Bridge station is on the 56 bus route that passes by my house.

At Stratford, there are two platforms that have been positioned to give easy access to the Temple Mills Branch through Lea Bridge and Tottenham Hale and onwards to Stansted Airport. I took these pictures of the platforms.

They sit at the end of the two London Overground platforms, which are the Eastern terminus of the North London Line. You can see two Class 378 trains peeking out from underneath the rusty bridge. (Not my name, but an East London nickname, I’ve heard from locals and station staff!) This Google Map shows the layout of the platforms.

Stratford Platforms 11 And 12

Stratford Platforms 11 And 12

In the map, platforms 11 and 12 curve away to the North from underneath the rusty bridge, which connects Eastfield to Stratford town centre.

Platform 11 is the Easternmost platform and is used as the terminus of the Stratford to Bishops Stortford service, which has been rumoured many would like extended to Stansted.

Platforms 1 and 2 for the North London Line are connected to the unused Platform 12, by a simple walkway, so in the future if Platform 12 is used for the STAR services, passengers going from anywhere on the North London Line to Tottenham Hale or Angel Road would just have an easy interchange.

As the STAR service will initially be an hourly service and the Bishops Stortford service is half-hourly and they run from platforms connected by a subway, I can’t help feeling that this will be an arrangement that won’t last long, before it is improved.

Suppose you arrive at Stratford wanting to get home to your house near Lea Bridge station and just miss the hourly train. Do you wait an hour for another train or catch the Bishops Stortford train, that will probably stop at Lea Bridge, after the new station opens?

It would be so much easier, if the two local services started from an shared island platform or at lest two platforms with a level walk between them.

This is going to get very complicated, if some of the plans for Stratford services up the Lea Valley are implemented.

  • I’ve read several times, that reinstatement of the link to Stansted Airport is an aspiration of many, especially as Stratford is close to the Olympic Park and it is an important rail interchange and a terminus for two branches of the DLR and the Jubilee and North London Lines.
  • There are also aspirations to start a direct service between the Chingford branch and Stratford using the reinstated Hall Farm Curve.
  • With all of the housing, business and leisure developments along the lower Lea Valley, it will not be long before an hourly STAR service is inadequate.
  • If the Hall Farm Curve is reinstated, would there be a need to run services between the Chingford branch and the North London Line?
  • There is also the Crossrail effect, which in the Lea Valley’s case could not be just Crossrail, but Crossrail 2 if that ever gets built.
  • Perhaps unlikely now, but I feel that at some point the Dalston Eastern Curve will be reopened, so enabling services between say Walthamstow to South London.
  • Is there a need to better connect Stratford International station to the main regional complex?

I can’t help feeling that the layout of Platforms 11 and 12 will at some time not be able to handle all the Lea Valley services.

I suspect though there may be an innovative solution.

Look at the Google Map and you see that the Temple Mills Branch passes over the deep hole of the International station. I wrote Is This The Most Unwelcoming Station In The UK? about that dreadful station.

So could two or three bay platforms to serve the Lea Valley and Stansted Airport, be built alongside the Temple Mills Branch, as it passes over the International station?

This Google Map shows Stratford International station.

Stratford International Station

Stratford International Station

The building at the bottom right is also shown on the previous map that shows Platforms 11 and 12.

If the extra platforms were built over the Eastern end of the International station, it would enable the following.

  • A new Eastern entrance to the International station could be created to give better connections between International and High Speed services from Stratford International and all the other services at Stratford Regional station.
  • Crossrail would have a step-free interchange to Eurostar and other International services, if those services stopped at the International station.
  • Interchange between Lea Valley and North London Line services, would be via a double Clapham Kiss, where passengers would just walk on the level to the other set of platforms.
  • There might be opportunities to extend or improve the connectivity of the DLR. The current DLR station is at the top left of the map.
  • Any direct services between the Temple Mills Branch and the North London Line would use the existing Platforms 11 and 12.

To get the connection right, the pedestrian links would have to be well-designed, but surely there is space to put a travelator effectively between the Regional and International stations.

Stratford International station would end up as what it should be, the International section of Stratford station.





September 21, 2015 - Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , ,


  1. […] several posts like Improving The East London Line, An Opportunity For Dalston, Platforms 11 And 12 At Stratford and Missing Links On The Overground, I mention the Dalston Eastern Curve. Currently, the land is […]

    Pingback by The Dalston Eastern Curve « The Anonymous Widower | November 16, 2015 | Reply

  2. […] One possible problem is the capacity at Stratford station, which only has two possible terminal platforms 11 and 12. […]

    Pingback by West Anglia Four-Tracking – Modern Railways March 2017 « The Anonymous Widower | February 25, 2017 | Reply

  3. […] Park Junction, cross over the Eastern End of Stratford International station and then arrive in Platforms 11 and 12 at Stratford […]

    Pingback by West Anglia Route Improvement – The High Meads Loop « The Anonymous Widower | February 28, 2017 | Reply

  4. Any idea when stratford platforms 11 and 12 were built ?.

    Comment by Mark white | September 25, 2020 | Reply

    • The best clue is that the North London Line service was moved to the current platforms, which connect to platform 12, in 2009. Eastfield opened in 2011.

      Comment by AnonW | September 25, 2020 | Reply

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