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The Crystal Palace and South London Junction Railway was authorised to build a line from Peckham Rye railway station to a terminus at Crystal Palace in 1862, in order to serve the attraction of the Crystal Palace.

Upper Sydenham
Coordinates51°25′53″N 0°4′14″W / 51.43139°N 0.07056°W / 51.43139; -0.07056Coordinates: 51°25′53″N 0°4′14″W / 51.43139°N 0.07056°W / 51.43139; -0.07056
Grid referenceTQ343719
Original companyLondon, Chatham and Dover Railway
Pre-groupingSouth Eastern and Chatham Railway
Post-groupingSouthern Railway
British Railways
1 August 1884Opened
1 January 1917closed
1 March 1919reopened
22 May 1944closed
4 March 1946reopened
20 September 1954Station closed to passengers
Disused railway stations in the United Kingdom
Closed railway stations in Britain
A 1908 Railway Clearing House map of lines around the Brighton Main Line in South London, showing surrounding lines, including the Crystal Palace and South London Junction Railway.


The station was opened by the London, Chatham and Dover Railway on 1 August 1884. It was temporarily closed from 1 January 1917 until 1 March 1919, and again between 22 May 1944 and 4 March 1946. Permanent closure occurred on 20 September 1954.[1]

Upper Sydenham station was the penultimate station on the route before Crystal Palace, sitting in the wooded area at the top of Sydenham Hill, overlooking Dulwich and Sydenham. The station and the line was poorly used despite new houses being built in the area as passengers preferred to use other stations near-by (Sydenham Hill, Crystal Palace (Lower Level) and Sydenham) which were on more direct routes. The line was one of the first of the former South Eastern and Chatham Railway to be electrified by Southern Railway, under "South Eastern Electrification - Stage 1" in July 1925.[2] The destruction of the Crystal Palace in 1936 saw patronage reduced.

During the Second World War the branch line suffered damage from enemy action. After the war the cost of repairing the war damage with declining receipts led to the decision to close the line to close on 20 September 1954, the first permanent closure of a Southern Electric line. The dismantling of the station took place in 1957.


Today all that remains of Upper Sydenham Station is the booking office and station house, which is now a private residence on Wells Park Road, the railway tunnel which is now blocked off but intact as well as some ruined huts and a few muddy hints of where the line and platform once ran. It is thought that the station platforms were buried when the area was landscaped and some platform fragments are visible in the ground adjacent to the tunnel mouth. The station's location sits in Dulwich Woods, providing a popular local footpath.

Preceding station   Disused railways   Following station
Lordship Lane   British Railways
Southern Region

Crystal Palace and South London Junction Railway
  Crystal Palace
(High Level)


  1. ^ Butt, R.V.J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations. Yeovil: Patrick Stephens Ltd. p. 237. ISBN 1-85260-508-1. R508.
  2. ^ "Electric Railways". 'Stendec Systems'. 2007. Archived from the original on 28 September 2007. Retrieved 1 February 2007. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)

Further readingEdit

  • Crystal Palace (High Level) and Catford Loop by V Mitchell & K Smith, Middleton Press, 1991
  • The Railway through Sydenham Hill Wood, From the Nun's Head to the Screaming Alice by Mathew Frith, The Friends of the Great North Wood and London Wildlife Trust leaflet 1995
  • London's Local Railways by A A Jackson, David & Charles, 1978
  • The Crystal Palace (High Level) Branch by W Smith, British Railway Journal 28, 1989

External linksEdit