Mid-Kent Railway

The Mid Kent & North Kent Junction Railway (usually referred to as the Mid Kent Railway) was an early railway in Kent England. (Note the name is given both with and without the hyphen in different sources.)



The Mid Kent Railway was formed on 23 July 1855 to construct a 4.75-mile line between the South Eastern Railway (SER) at Lewisham and the Farnborough Extension of the West End of London and Crystal Palace Railway (WEL&CPR) at Beckenham, later renamed Beckenham Junction.[1] The intention then was to extend this line to Croydon at a later date.[2] The line opened 1 January 1857 and was operated by the SER under a ten-year agreement.

Addiscombe LineEdit

Although the company later abandoned its intention of building a line to Croydon, an extension to "Croydon (Addiscombe Road)" from New Beckenham through Elmers End was completed in 1862 which was also leased to the SER on completion.


The remaining interests of the company were taken over by the SER in August 1866.[3]

The Crays CompanyEdit

In 1856 an Act was passed authorising the Mid-Kent (Bromley & St Mary Cray) Railway to construct a 4 mile line between the WEL&CPR terminus at "Bromley" (now Shortlands) and St Mary Cray. The MK(B&SMC)R was commonly called The Crays Company.[4]

It was assumed that the Crays line would be operated by the SER in conjunction with the Lewisham to Beckenham line, and eventually acquired by them. But the shareholders heard that the SER was planning a competing line and transferred their allegiance to the East Kent Railway (EKR). After negotiation with the EKR, the Crays Company only built the line from the WEL&CPR at Bromley to "Southborough Road" (Bickley). St Mary Cray to Southborough Road was built by the EKR as part of their Western Extension from Strood.

The Crays line was leased to the London, Chatham & Dover Railway (LC&DR, successor to the EKR) in 1862.[5]

Thus despite the similarity of name, the Mid Kent and North Kent Junction Railway and the Mid-Kent (Bromley & St Mary Cray) Railway remained separate and independent until absorbed by the SER and LC&DR respectively.


The Lewisham – Elmers End and the Shortlands – St Mary Cray sections now form parts of the Hayes line and the Chatham Main Line, respectively.


  1. ^ "Kent Rail: Addiscombe". Retrieved 6 October 2019.
  2. ^ "Railway Intelligence. Mid-Kent". The Times. London. 1 March 1858. p. 7.
  3. ^ "Business and Finance: Mid-Kent". The Times. London. 14 August 1866. p. 5.
  4. ^ Gray, Adrian (1984). The London, Chatham & Dover Railway. Rainham, Kent: Meresford Books. p. 33.
  5. ^ "Railway Intelligence. South-Eastern". The Times. London. 6 June 1862. p. 11.