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Brentwood railway station is on the Great Eastern Main Line in the East of England, serving the town of Brentwood, Essex. It is 18 miles 16 chains (29.3 km) down the line from London Liverpool Street and is situated between Harold Wood and Shenfield. Its three-letter station code is BRE.

Brentwood Crossrail
Brentwood Station - - 957508.jpg
Brentwood is located in Essex
Location of Brentwood in Essex
Local authorityBorough of Brentwood
Grid referenceTQ593930
Managed byTfL Rail
Station codeBRE
DfT categoryC2
Number of platforms4
Fare zone9
National Rail annual entry and exit
2013–14Increase 2.810 million[2]
2014–15Increase 2.871 million[2]
2015–16Decrease 2.819 million[2]
2016–17Increase 2.884 million[2]
2017–18Increase 2.992 million[2]
Railway companies
Original companyEastern Counties Railway
Pre-groupingGreat Eastern Railway
Post-groupingLondon and North Eastern Railway
Key dates
1 July 1840 (1840-07-01)Opened as Brentwood
1 November 1882Renamed Brentwood & Warley for Billericay
1 January 1889Renamed Brentwood & Warley
20 February 1969Renamed Brentwood
Other information
External links
WGS8451°36′49″N 0°18′00″E / 51.61361°N 0.30000°E / 51.61361; 0.30000Coordinates: 51°36′49″N 0°18′00″E / 51.61361°N 0.30000°E / 51.61361; 0.30000
Underground sign at Westminster.jpg London transport portal

The station is currently managed by TfL Rail. The vast majority of services call at Brentwood as part of the Liverpool Street-Shenfield stopping "metro" service operated by TfL Rail, but some Abellio Greater Anglia services for Southend Victoria also call on Sundays.

In the future the TfL Rail service will be re-branded as the Elizabeth line as part of the Crossrail project. Eventually, the Elizabeth line service will be extended beyond Liverpool Street to Paddington and onwards to Reading and Heathrow Airport.


Eastern Counties Railways (1840-1862)Edit

Brentwood station was opened on 1 July 1840 as a temporary terminus by the Eastern Counties Railway (ECR) on what was to become the Great Eastern Main Line, until 1843, when the line was extended towards Colchester. From opening a small railway turntable was provided and by 1845 as the size of locomotives grew a larger turntable was provided. As it is located at the bottom of a steep incline locomotives were allocated at Brentwood to assist trains get up the bank and by 1868 the turntable was enlarged. A three track engine shed located on the up side of the station behind the then up platform of the two platform station.[3]

Initially provided with temporary wooden buildings substantial brick buildings were provided on the up side in 1842, These included a tower and a bell was sounded when trains departed..[4]

A north facing siding behind the up platform was provided for traffic to the nearby Warley Barracks.[5]

By the 1860s the railways in East Anglia were in financial trouble, and most were leased to the ECR; they wished to amalgamate formally, but could not obtain government agreement for this until 1862, when the Great Eastern Railway was formed by amalgamation. [6]

Great Eastern Railway (1862-1922)Edit

The Great Eastern Railway (GER) took over operation in 1862 and renamed the station as Brentwood & Warley for Billericay in 1882, shortened to Brentwood & Warley in 1889.

By the 1870s the goods yard which was located on the down side of te line south of the station contained a number of loops and sidings. As well as serving a goods shed spurs served a local gas works and Robsons Maltings. By the 1890s a coal siding operated by East Anglian coal merchant Thomas Moy was in operation.[7]

The engine shed was rebuilt in 1893.[8]

London & North Eastern Railway (1923-1947)Edit

After the grouping of 1923 operation of the station passed to the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER). The LNER quadrupled the number of tracks passing through in 1934. Two new platforms were opened on the south (up) side of the station, with a new up booking office.

The bell tower was demolished during the 1920s.[9]

Plans to electrify the line through Brentwood to Shenfield were announced during the 1930s but out on hold after World War 2 broke out.

The station was bombed during World War 2 and the new booking office was damaged.[10]

World War 2 saw an increase of engines allocated to Brentwood engine shed possibly re-sited away from the larger and more obvious target at Stratford.[11]

British Railways (1948-1996)Edit

After nationalisation on 1 January 1948 Brentwood became part of the Eastern Region of British Railways.

The engine shed was closed in 1949 although the goods yard had a small petrol shunter that was maintained locally being withdrawn in September 1956.[12]

The electric service to Shenfield was inaugurated on 26 September 1949 but services were run to steam timings with a number of steam trains still operating. The full electric service officially commenced on 7 November 1949 (although a full dummy run had taken place the previous day).[13]

View of Brentwood & Warley station in 1961

In 1969 the station's name was changed back to Brentwood.

The privatisation era (1996-present)Edit

The station is sited at the bottom of a bank which ascends to the east towards Shenfield. This presented a significant climb to down-steam trains. Until 2001, embankment ladders were present to allow workmen to access the tracks but these were replaced with a walkway along the tracks.

In 2010, National Express East Anglia, then the operating company for the line, commenced an improvement programme at the station, including the expansion of the entrance and ticket hall, refurbishment of waiting rooms and provision for the installation of customer lifts to the platforms.[14]

Accidents and incidentsEdit

  • On 19 September 1850, nine workmen were killed when they were struck by a train near Brentwood station in dense fog. The ECR was criticised by the coroner's jury for not adequately protecting the men.[15]
  • On 20 November 1902, approximately 80 passengers were injured on an Ipswich-Liverpool Street service that had stopped at Brentwood & Warley station when it was rear-ended by a train that was not in service. A Board of Trade report stated that the empty train's speed "was not more than four or five miles an hour" at the time of the collision as it had only just pulled out of a siding to enter service from Brentwood.[16]
  • On 8 July 1926, 12 people were injured when a passenger and mail train from Liverpool Street was approaching Brentwood & Warley and collided head-on with a train pilot engine. At the moment of impact the speed of the passenger train had been about 10 mph, whilst the light engine was almost or completely stationary. The primary causes of the accident were recorded as driver and shunter errors, as well as excessive speed.[17]
  • On 10 February 1941, seven people were killed and 19 seriously injured in a collision on the track between Harold Wood and Brentwood & Warley. An express train travelling from Liverpool Street to Norwich Thorpe came to a stand on the main line, unable to ascend the bank due to a shortage of steam, and about eight minutes later was run into from the rear by a Southend Victoria-bound stopping service which had passed a signal at danger. The speed of the Southend train was reported to have been around 30 mph, resulting in a violent collision. The driver of the Southend train was fully fit, highly experienced and should have noticed both the red signal and the stopped train ahead. He "fully admitted his responsibility for the collision" and according to a Ministry of War Transport investigation: "Such a grave lapse on the part of an experienced main line driver is difficult to explain."[18]


Trains serving Brentwood are predominantly operated by TfL Rail and some on Sundays only are operated by Abellio Greater Anglia. The typical Monday-Saturday off-peak service from the station is six trains per hour in each direction on the stopping "metro" service between Shenfield and Liverpool Street. On Sundays the TfL Rail service is reduced to two, and two Abellio Greater Anglia Southend services call.

The following services typically call at Brentwood:

Operator Route Rolling stock Frequency Notes
TfL Rail London Liverpool Street - Stratford - Maryland - Forest Gate - Manor Park - Ilford - Seven Kings - Goodmayes - Chadwell Heath - Romford - Gidea Park - Harold Wood - Brentwood - Shenfield Class 315, Class 345 6x per hour 2x per hour on Sundays
Abellio Greater Anglia London Liverpool Street - Stratford - Romford - Gidea Park - Harold Wood - Brentwood - Shenfield - Billericay - Wickford - Rayleigh - Hockley - Rochford - Southend Airport - Southend Victoria Class 321 2x per hour Sundays only

In June 2017 new Class 345 trains began entering service in preparation for the opening of Crossrail. The platforms at Brentwood will be extended from their current length of between 184 metres (201 yd) and 187 metres (205 yd) to accommodate the new trains which will be over 200 metres (220 yd) long once extended to nine carriages. New lifts, signage, help points, customer information screens and CCTV will also be installed.


  1. ^ "Step free Tube Guide" (PDF). Transport for London. March 2019. Archived (PDF) from the original on 1 June 2019.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Station usage estimates". Rail statistics. Office of Rail Regulation. Please note: Some methodology may vary year on year.
  3. ^ Hawkins, Chris; Reeve, George (1986). Great Eastern Railway engine sheds - Volume 1. Didcot UK: Wild Swan. p. 91. ISBN 0 906867 40 1.
  4. ^ Bowdidge, nigel (July 1989). "Notes on the building of Brentwood, Shenfield and Ingatestone". Great Eastern Journal. 59: 12.
  5. ^ Bowdidge, nigel (July 1989). "Notes on the building of Brentwood, Shenfield and Ingatestone". Great Eastern Journal. 59: 8.
  6. ^ Vaughan, Adrian (1997). Railwaymen, Politics and Money. London: John Murray. pp. 134, 135. ISBN 0 7195 5150 1.
  7. ^ Hallett, Graham (July 2019). "Peggy the Simpex petrol shunter". Great Eastern Journal. 179: 21.
  8. ^ Bowdidge, nigel (July 1989). "Notes on the building of Brentwood, Shenfield and Ingatestone". Great Eastern Journal. 59: 8.
  9. ^ Bowdidge, nigel (July 1989). "Notes on the building of Brentwood, Shenfield and Ingatestone". Great Eastern Journal. 59: 12.
  10. ^ Simpson, Frank D (October 1997). "Brentwood station". Great Eastern Journal. 92.
  11. ^ Hawkins, Chris; Reeve, George (1986). Great Eastern Railway engine sheds - Volume 1. Didcot UK: Wild Swan. p. 93. ISBN 0 906867 40 1.
  12. ^ Hallett, Graham (July 2019). "Peggy the Simpex petrol shunter". Great Eastern Journal. 179: 22.
  13. ^ Baker, John (July 1992). "The Great Eastern Section electrification part 2". Great Eastern Journal: 71.8–71.9.
  14. ^
  15. ^ "Dreadful Accident On The Eastern Counties' Railway - Nine Workmen Killed". Essex Standard (1032). 27 September 1850. p. 4. Retrieved 4 February 2019 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^

External linksEdit

Preceding station       Crossrail   Following station
TfL Rail
Shenfield Metro
  Future development  
towards Paddington
Elizabeth line