Lock and Key of the Kingdom

Dover Town Station

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An artist's inpression of the opening of Dover Town station in 1844.
The station was designed to resemble the London terminus of the South Eastern Railway.

The station was opened by the South Eastern Railway on 7 February 1844, as the terminus of their new line from London via Redhill. The station was originally designed with an impressive tower, as can be seen in the artist’s impression of the opening ceremony above, but this was never built. The railway company did build the Lord Warden Hotel on land adjoining the station, which was connected to the station at first floor level by a glazed footbridge over the road.

In 1859 work started extending the line from the station onto the Admiralty Pier, to allow the trains to connect with the cross-Channel steamers, and was completed in 1861. In 1863 the station, which had originally just been called Dover, changed its name to Dover Town after the London Chatham & Dover Railway’s ‘Dover Town’ had changed its name to Dover Priory.

In June 1881 a double track line was opened to the London Chatham & Dover Railway’s Harbour Station. This branched off the main line just before it entered the Town Station. This new line allowed through working of South Eastern Railway trains onto the newly opened joint line to Deal.

In October 1914 the station closed to passengers when the South Eastern Railway decided to concentrate local passenger services at the Priory Station. The station continued in military use during the First World War. In 1928 new engine sheds were opened close to the site of the old town station, replacing the original small sheds at Dover Town and Dover Priory. The remaining station buildings were demolished in December 1963.

Image:  The old Town Station, on the right, c.1930 being passed by a boat train on its way to the Marine Station.
The old Town Station, on the right, c.1930 being passed by a boat train on its way to the Marine Station.




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