The Anonymous Widower

Debden Station – 30th August 2021

Debden station is now step-free, so I popped in to have a look on my trip back from Epping.


  1. The station has three bridges; an old heritage one, a girder construction in the middle and the new steel one between the lift towers.
  2. The heritage bridge seems to be the one that most passengers use.
  3. The station building is typical of the 1970s.
  4. The station has over two hundred parking spaces. They are also bookable in advance.

The two new lifts are from Otis and they are in a self-contained installation of just two lifts and a bridge with no steps. Although, there does appear to be emergency stairs to one side.

Have Otis Developed A Modular Lift System?

This picture of Wimbledon Park station, is taken from Wimbledon Park Station – 27th August 2021.

The new lift can be seen on the left of the station behind the wall with the posters. It is encased in a dark-grey steel box, with a brick facia on the far side. The lift at Wimbledon Park station is from Otis.

This picture shows the new lifts at Ickenham station.

The lifts appear to have a lot of similarity to those at Debden.

I didn’t check the make of the lifts at Ickenham station, but if they are Otis, it looks like the company could have a modular system for lifts.

As this picture from Wimbledon Park station shows, they can even be given a tasteful facia.

The single lift at Wimbledon Park station could be the prototype for many similar installations.

Debden Station As A Step-Free Park-And-Ride Station

This Google Map shows the location of Debden station.

Note the closeness of the M11 to Debden station.

Unfortunately, the junction only connects Chigwell Lane with London and has no connection with the North and Harlow.

There is an urban myth, that Northbound slip roads weren’t built here, to stop robbers getting away to the countryside if they robbed the De La Rue factory of newly-printed bank notes.

This section in Wikipedia says this about Northbound slip-roads at Junction 5.

An official plan to add north-facing connections at junction 5 in Debden, Loughton was abandoned in 1998.

The sliproads would enable Debden station to be used as a Park-and-Ride station for London using the Central Line.

  • Liverpool Street, Bank, St. Pauls and Chancery Lane stations would be served in the City of London.
  • Debden and Bank are just over half-an-hour apart.
  • Driving would probably take a few minutes longer.
  • There would be a step-free cross-platform interchange with Crossrail at Stratford station for the West End, Paddington and Heathrow.

I suspect it would be an expensive scheme to develop a fully step-free Park-and-Ride and it would be more affordable to make Epping station fully step-free.

August 30, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , | Leave a comment

Epping Station – 30th August 2021

In Essex Councillors Call For Underground Link, I discussed the pros and cons of extending the Central Line from Epping station to Harlow.

As I didn’t have any pictures of Epping station. I went to the station and took these.

This map from shows the track layout at Epping station.


  1. There are two platforms both of which are used to terminate trains.
  2. Platform 2 is step-free, but Platform 1 is only step-free for exit only.
  3. There is a large car park with 541 spaces including twelve for disabled drivers.

I suspect this means, that someone who has difficulty with the bridge and has parked their car in the car park has a problem.

To my mind there are two obvious solutions.

  • Put in a second step-free bridge at the station.
  • If no trains go past the ends of the platform, it might be possible to build a level walkway across the two tracks.

It would all depend on the budget and any plans to extend the Central Line to Harlow or on to the tracks of the Epping Ongar Railway.

It would certainly be possible to extend Platform 1 to serve as a platform for the Epping Ongar Railway and have a walkway across the tracks  to give step-free access between all three platforms.

  • It would make the heritage Epping Ongar Railway into a unique London tourist attraction with direct access from the Underground.
  • It might even be possible for the heritage railway to run connection services between Epping and Ongar at times, when they would be financially worthwhile and operationally possible.

There are certainly possibilities.

August 30, 2021 Posted by | Transport/Travel | , , , , , , | 2 Comments