Debden tube station

Debden tube station
Debden London Underground
Debden Tube Station.jpg
Station entrance
Debden is located in Essex

Location of Debden in Essex
Location Debden
Local authority Epping Forest
Managed by London Underground
Number of platforms 2
Fare zone 6

London Underground annual entry and exit
2008 decrease 1.760 million[1]
2009 increase 1.896 million[1]
2010 increase 2.020 million[1]

1865 Opened (ECR)
1916 Closed (GER)
1919 Reopened (GER)
1949 Ended (BR)
1949 Reopened (LUL)
18 April 1966 Goods yard closed[2]

List of stations Underground · National Rail

Coordinates: 51°38′43″N 0°05′02″E / 51.64527°N 0.08388°E / 51.64527; 0.08388

Debden is a London Underground station on the Central Line in Debden, in the Epping Forest district of Essex. The station is between Loughton and Theydon Bois. It is located in Station Approach off Chigwell Lane (A1168) and is in Travelcard Zone 6.



The station was originally opened on 24 April 1865[3] by The Eastern Counties Railway (later Great Eastern Railway) as part of an extension of the railway's Loughton branch to Epping and Ongar. Initially called Chigwell Road, it was soon renamed on 1 December 1865 as Chigwell Lane, but remained as a one platform halt for the first years of its life.

Chigwell Lane was one of a number of GER stations that saw a temporary suspension of passenger services, due to the need to make economies, during the First World War. The station was closed from 22 May 1916[3] until 3 February 1919.[3] As a consequence of the 1921 Railways Act, the GER was merged with other railway companies in 1923 to become part of the London & North Eastern Railway (LNER).

As part of the 1935 - 1940 "New Works Programme" of the London Passenger Transport Board, the LNER branch was to be transferred to form the part of the eastern extension of the Central Line. Although work commenced in 1938 it was suspended upon the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 and work only recommenced in 1946. British Railways (BR, successor to LNER after nationalisation in 1948) steam services were replaced by electric Central line passenger services on 25 September 1949.[3] From the handover, the station was renamed Debden.[4] BR goods services continued to be operated on the branch for years afterwards.[5]

The station today

Debden station operates as an intermediate terminus for eastbound trains from central London and a number of peak hour trains end at the station rather than continue to Epping. A turnback siding east of the station allows eastbound services to reverse direction and enter the westbound platform to return to central London. The siding may also be used in the reverse direction, allowing westbound trains from Epping to be terminated at Debden during service disruptions and return east.

At one time, there were two sidings at Debden, and a majority of trains terminated there, with only a limited service operating on to Epping, however; in recent years, the Epping service has improved considerably, reducing the number of trains terminating at Debden. The present station buildings on the eastbound platform largely date from a reconstruction in 1974 although the original station master's house survives adjacent to the ticket office.



  1. ^ a b c "Customer metrics: entries and exits". London Underground performance update. Transport for London. 2003-2010. Retrieved 8 May 2011. 
  2. ^ Hardy, Brian, ed (March 2011). "How it used to be - freight on The Underground 50 years ago". Underground News (London Underground Railway Society) (591): 175–183. ISSN 0306-8617. 
  3. ^ a b c d Clive's Underground Line Guides - Central Line, dates
  4. ^ Rose, Douglas (1999). The London Underground, A Diagrammatic History. Douglas Rose. ISBN 1-85414-219-4. 
  5. ^ Clive's Underground Line Guides - Central Line, history

External links

London's Transport Museum Photographic Archive - Debden station, 1961

Preceding station   Underground no-text.svg London Underground   Following station
Central line
Epping branch
towards Epping

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