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Acton Town stn eastbound District look west

Acton Town tube station eastbound District line platform looking west on the 14th of September, 2008.

South Acton Station - - 899052

South Acton Station Looking east from the station footbridge on the 22nd of July, 2008. Attribution: Alan Murray-Rust.

Acton Town to South Acton Tube LineEdit

The South Acton branch it's selfEdit

On 13 June 1905 passenger service began on the short branch to South Acton. A short fifth platform for the single car train of the South Acton branch was provided to the north of the eastbound island platform. At first the service ran to Hounslow West and to Uxbridge but it was later reduced to a shuttle between Acton Town and South Acton on 15 February 1932.

The South Acton branch was closed on 28 February 1959 due to low usage; its platform at Acton Town has not been removed and is still visible. The platform is hidden behind advertising hoardings and not obvious to the casual observer. Much of the branch remains including a bridge support on the south side of Bollo Lane.

In the picture, the area behind the hoarding in the background is the location of the former branch platform (Platform 5) which was only ever very short, two carriages at most.


A short spur of the District Railway (DR) from Acton Town station, 1,232 yards (1,126 metres) long, was authorised by the Metropolitan Railway Act of 1874. When first opened, the spur was used for goods trains from 15 May 1899 onwards. Passenger services were introduced on 13 June 1905 to provide an interchange with the North London Railway which ran services from north London to the DR's Richmond branch. It thus provided an easier interchange for Richmond for eastbound passengers than changing trains at Turnham Green further east.

Train operationsEdit

The South Acton station on the District line of the London Underground was located adjacent to South Acton station on the North London Line on the north-west side of the tracks.

Initially, the line had through passenger services to Hounslow Barracks (now Hounslow West). However, the line was relatively little used and in 1932 the line was reduced to a single track, operated by a one-car shuttle service between Acton Town and South Acton.

In 1933 the railway became part of the London Passenger Transport Board, becoming a branch line of the District line.

Just south of the station before the Bollo Lane level crossing was located a major creamery and milk bottling plant for Express Dairies, which was served by milk trains from both the Great Western Railway and the Southern Railway.

In later years, the shuttle train was normally worked by a single car of London Underground G Stock, specially modified for one person operation and fitted with additional brakes. Given the (then highly unusual) driver-only operation, the branch line was equipped with a two wire emergency telephone system at window level, a feature normally found only in tunnels on the London Underground.

Eventual ClosureEdit

The South Acton shuttle was withdrawn on 28 February 1959. Nothing now remains of the spur, except for a few bridgeheads and sections of the old trackbed, which indicate the route. Currently the rest of station of the same name continues to be well used.


Acton Town Tube StationEdit

Since 17 May 1994, the station has been a Grade II Listed building. The short (2 carriage?) platform 5 remained behind adverting hording and 1 of the 2 tracks now remains, but only for regular usage since the South Acton branch was closed on 28 February 1959 due to low usage. A siding next Acton Town's then LUL signalbox was lifted in 2000. The passageway to platform 5 and the joining stairwell are there for maintenance, hording erection and emergency access purposes.

South Acton Tube StationEdit

South Acton railway station was also served by the District line of the London Underground until 1959. The short (2 carriage?) platform 3 and 1 of the 2 tracks remained for a few years as a siding for stabling spare stock, works trains and rush-hour trains. The LUL platform was soon demolished and the line was lifted by about 1980, but the BR ones are still in use.

The site of the old South Acton underground station was on an embankment at a slightly higher level than the North London line station set to its right. The underground station was compleatly leveled by 2002-2004.

Redevelopment on the site of the old South Acton underground stationEdit

2014 saw a low-rise office block and 2 low-rise housing blocks built on it's long empty footprint.

Also seeEdit

  1. Trains and trams
  2. UK railways- 1945 to 1985
  3. Why BR stopped calling at some eastern District Line stations
  4. "London's Burning" (the political epithet, not the UK TV show)


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