- Blake Hall tube station
Infobox Closed London station
name = Blake Hall
Eastern Counties Railway
borough = Epping Forest
platforms = 1
start = 1865
end = 1981
replace = none
tubestation = yes
Blake Hall station is a disused station in Essex, formerly on the
Central Lineof the London Undergroundbetween North Weald and Ongar. It was named after Blake Hall, a country house located a mile or so to the north east of the station in the village of Bobbingworth, and inhabited by a family of substantial local land owners. The station was built as part of the landlord's agreement to build a railway through his land.
The station was first opened by the
Eastern Counties Railwayon 1 April 1865, serving principally as a goods station taking agricultural produce from the nearby farms into central London. Steam locomotives operated by British Railwaysfor the Underground ran a shuttle service from Epping to Ongar (stopping at Blake Hall) from 1949 to 1957, when the line was electrified and taken over by the Underground's Central Line.
The station subsequently became known as the least used on the entire Underground (not surprisingly: fare subsidies provided on the rest of the underground system were not provided on this part of the line due to the failure of local government agencies for Essex and London to agree their respective public transport responsibilities, and Blake Hall station was located a considerable distance from any substantial settlement). By the time it was closed on
31 October 1981, the station was reported to have only six passengers a day. The entire Epping to Ongar branch was closed 13 years later, on 30 September 1994. The station building still exists (it has since been converted into a private home), as does the now reopened line passing it; but the small coal depot at the western end of the station was closed in the early 1960s, soon after the line's electrification, and the passenger platform has now also been demolished.
Epping Ongar Railwayfor more information on the reopened preserved railway that runs past the old station house.
Epping Ongar Railway
Ongar tube station
North Weald tube station
* [http://www.eorailway.co.uk/ Epping Ongar Railway's Official Website]
* [http://www.abandonedstations.org.uk/Ongar_Branch_2.html London's Abandoned Tube Stations - Blake Hall]
* [http://www.abandonedstations.org.uk/Ongar_Branch.html London's Abandoned Tube Stations - Epping to Ongar branch]
* [http://www.subbrit.org.uk/sb-sites/stations/b/blake_hall/index.shtml Photo collection of Blake Hall station in 1981.]
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