East Brixton opened in 1866 as Loughborough Park. It consisted of two platforms with wooden buildings on highpiers next to the railway viaduct. In 1870 the station was renamed Loughborough Park and Brixton, before it was finally renamed East Brixton in 1894. Passenger services were operated by the Southern Railway (later theSouthern Region of British Railways).
The station was included in a proposal published in 1905 by the Australian engineer Elfric Wells Chalmers Kearney for an underground monorail-type railway. The plans for the Kearney High-Speed Railway envisaged running a tube line from Cricklewood via central London, Brixton and Herne Hill to Crystal Palace, but were never realised.
1948 to 2004
East Brixton station had also made a brief appearance in the 1948 comedy film, A Date with a Dream. It is seen in the background of scene in which two soldiers (played by Len Lowe and Bill Lowe) walk along Barrington Road. Patronage slowly fell and Dr Richard Beeching recommended the closure of small little-used country stations.
Over the years the station became progressively neglected and lost passengers from 1971 when Brixton tube station, the southern terminus of the new Victoria line, opened nearby. With declining passenger numbers and the station requiring extensive repairs to the wooden platforms and buildings it was decided that the expense was not justified. There was a fire in 1975 which temporarily closed the station but the station reopened and was finally closed on 5 January 1976. The platforms and its buildings were demolished shortly after closure. Nothing now remains of the station at track level: there are some arches and windows in the viaduct of the still used line.
2005 to date
Between 2005 and 2012, most of the South London Line was incorporated into the London Overground network as part of the East London line extension project to create an orbital railway around London.
Westbound London Overground services run along this section of the line as far as Wandsworth Road and then branch off at Heathbrook Park, passing throughBattersea towards Clapham Junction. This route crosses over Loughborough Junction and Brixton stations and the plans have been criticised for missing opportunities to create new interchange stations with Thameslink services and the London Underground Victoria line respectively. Under current proposals, no stations are planned at these locations as the line is on high railway arches, making the cost of any station construction prohibitive. It has been suggested that a re-opened East Brixton station could provide a form of interchange with the Victoria line and Thameslink as it would be located almost exactly in the middle of the two lines.
There have been suggestions that East Brixton station could re-open as part of the new London Overground network. Although the station was closed and demolished, there is still space to re-open it. The option of building platforms at Brixton railway station on the same line was mooted, but nothing has come of it.
- R.V.J.Butt, (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations. Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 1-85260-508-1