Julian Glover

London’s 598 railways stations have made the capital what it is

There was fierce competition to build stations in Victorian London, says Christian Wolmar — but the many random lines turned out to be useful

View from the Thames of Cannon Street station, opened in 1866. Credit: Getty Images

I began this book waiting for a diesel train to Derby, under the windy, boxy, flat-roofed bit which one of Sir Norman Foster’s team added to the back end of St Pancras station. At around 7 p.m. on a weekday only a dozen or so people were travelling. In the arcade below — built by the proud Midland Railway, as Christian Wolmar reminds us, to the dimensions of the Burton beer barrels the space was designed to store — shops are being boarded up.

Already a subscriber? Log in

Keep reading with a free trial

Subscribe and get your first month of online and app access for free. After that it’s just £1 a week.

There’s no commitment, you can cancel any time.


Unlock more articles



Don't miss out

Join the conversation with other Spectator readers. Subscribe to leave a comment.

Already a subscriber? Log in