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Harpenden railway station

Harpenden railway station is on the Midland Main Line in England, serving the town of Harpenden, Hertfordshire. It is 24 miles 51 chains (39.7 km) down the line from London St Pancras and is situated between St Albans City to the south and Luton Airport Parkway to the north. Its three-letter station code is HPD.

Harpenden National Rail
Harpenden Train Station.jpg
Facing South from platform 1 (Southbound) at Harpenden
Local authorityCity of St Albans
Coordinates51°48′54″N 0°21′07″W / 51.815°N 0.352°W / 51.815; -0.352Coordinates: 51°48′54″N 0°21′07″W / 51.815°N 0.352°W / 51.815; -0.352
Grid referenceTL137142
Station codeHPD
Managed byThameslink
Number of platforms4
DfT categoryD
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2013/14Increase 3.182 million
2014/15Increase 3.316 million
2015/16Increase 3.337 million
2016/17Increase 3.356 million
2017/18Increase 3.357 million
Key datesOpened 1868 (1868)
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Harpenden from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
Thameslink operates train services through Harpenden
Harpenden station at night

The station is served by Thameslink-operated trains on the Thameslink route.


The second station in Harpenden, it was built by the Midland Railway in 1868 on its extension to St. Pancras, however nothing remains of the original station buildings. Although located on Station Road, the road is actually named after the first station, Harpenden East, now closed.

A branch line, built by the Hemel Hempstead Railway Company in 1877, known as the Nickey Line but operated by the Midland, formerly diverged from the main line north of the station. The intention had been to meet the LNWR at Boxmoor but the section from Hemel Hempstead never had a passenger service. In 1886 a south curve was added to the junction allowing passengers to join the London trains at Harpenden rather than Luton.[1] The branch was closed in 1979. The route remains in use as a cycleway, passing under the M1 in a tunnel.

A row of five brick built former coal merchant's offices along the station approach are now used as small retail and office units.


The station has facilities toilets, a newsagent, dry cleaner, taxi office and rank, and a coffee shop.

The station also has ticket machines on both sides of the station.

The station has a PlusBus scheme where train and bus tickets can be bought together for a cheaper price.

All four platforms have been extended to support 12-carriage trains as part of the Thameslink programme. This also required widening a road bridge. Work on these started on 21 November 2010 and was completed in May 2011.[2] The construction of a new footbridge with lifts for disabled access has been completed and links up all four platforms. and[3] The east side of the station (platform 1 side) has two entrances both with ticket gates to ease congestion during peak times. The west side entrance is where the ticket office is located, but it also has ticket machines.

An extra deck of parking spaces is planned to be built on top of the existing east side car park. When completed, it will add an extra 200 parking spaces.[4]


2006/07 servicesEdit

The typical off-peak service pattern saw six trains per hour in each direction operated by First Capital Connect. Four of these were fast trains between Bedford and Brighton, via King's Cross Thameslink station in central London and Gatwick Airport. The remaining two trains called at all stations between Luton and Sutton (in South London).

December 2007Edit

Following the closure of King's Cross Thameslink station trains on the Thameslink route now operate between Bedford, Luton, Sutton and Brighton calling at the new low level platforms at St Pancras.

East Midlands Railway operate trains on the Midland Main Line route from St Pancras International to/from Leeds, Sheffield, Derby, Nottingham and Leicester through the station, but do not stop. Interchange with these trains can be made one or two stops to the north, either at Luton or Luton Airport Parkway, dependent on the service.


From March 2009, First Capital Connect, in partnership with Southeastern began running a Luton-Sevenoaks service which called at Harpenden.


Following completion of the Thameslink Programme in 2018, the following off-peak services are in operation:

  • 4tph between Bedford and Gatwick (semi-fast):
    • 2tph continue to Brighton;
  • 2tph between Luton and Rainham (stopping).
Preceding station   National Rail Following station

Luton Airport Parkway   Thameslink
  St Albans City
Disused railways
Line and station closed
Midland RailwayTerminus
Panorama of Harpenden station from north end of platform 1 during the day
Panorama of Harpenden station from south end of platform 1 at night


  1. ^ Radford, B., (1983) Midland Line Memories: a Pictorial History of the Midland Railway Main Line Between London (St Pancras) & Derby London: Bloomsbury Books
  2. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 24 November 2010. Retrieved 1 January 2011.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  3. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 1 June 2010.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  4. ^ White, Debbie. "Extra deck planned for Harpenden station car park".


  • Butt, R. V. J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt, platform and stopping place, past and present (1st ed.). Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 978-1-85260-508-7. OCLC 60251199.

External linksEdit