Hackney Central railway station – Wikipedia

London Overground station

Hackney Central is a London Overground station on the North London line in Hackney Central, Greater London. It lies between Dalston Kingsland and Homerton and is in Travelcard Zone 2.[4] The station and all trains serving it are operated by National Rail services under the control of the London Rail division of Transport for London. However, there is no standard red National Rail “double arrow” logo signage at the station, instead only the Overground roundel.[5]

The station is connected to Hackney Downs by a direct passenger walkway linking the two stations (replacing an earlier such link) that was opened in July 2015. This walkway means passengers do not have to exit on to the street in order to continue their onward journey.[6]


The North London Railway opened a station named Hackney on 26 September 1850, to the east of Mare Street, then in the county of Middlesex. It closed on 1 December 1870 and was replaced the same day by a station to the west of Mare Street, designed by Edwin Henry Horne and also named Hackney. This station passed in due course to the London and North Western Railway and later on to the London, Midland and Scottish Railway, which closed the entire North London line east of Dalston Junction to passenger traffic in 1944.[7]

Just to the west of the station a goods yard called Graham Road was opened by the Great Eastern Railway in 1894. Located just west of the GER Hackney Downs railway viaduct the depot consisted of seven sidings dealing with coal and general goods. The land had originally been purchased for a rail link between the North London and Great Eastern Railways.

Following nationalisation Hackney Central became part of British Railways on 1 January 1948.

Graham Road goods yard closed in October 1965.[8] The site was finally used to link the North London and Great Eastern lines when in anticipation of the closure of Broad Street railway station in 1985 the “Graham Road Curve” was opened to traffic.

On 12 May 1980, the station was reopened by British Rail, this time named Hackney Central, a little to the west of the 1870 station. The 1870 station building designed by Edwin Henry Horne is no longer in use by the railway, but is one of only two examples of North London Railway architecture still in situ, the other being Camden Road station, which is still open. Access to the modern Hackney Central station is from an alleyway adjacent to the 1870 building on Mare Street, as well as a more direct access from Amhurst Road. A new entrance from the south in Graham Road with ticket office and footbridge is scheduled to open in spring 2022.[9]

In February 2006, a Docklands Light Railway (DLR) report called Horizon 2020 was commissioned, which suggested that the DLR be extended here from Bow Church via Old Ford and Homerton, taking over the old parts of the North London line to link up Poplar and Canary Wharf.[10]

The former station building is now a bar and music venue.[11]

Line improvement[edit]

As part of the programme to introduce four-car trains on the London Overground network, the North London Line between Gospel Oak and Stratford closed in February 2010, and reopened on 1 June 2010. This was to enable the installation of a new signalling system and the extension of platforms across the network. Engineering work continued until May 2011, during which reduced services operated and Sunday services were suspended.[12]


London Overground Class 378 Capitalstar unit 378005 approaches Hackney Central. Units such as this operate all services at the station.

The typical off-peak service in trains per hour (tph) is:

The maintenance work on the North London Line was completed in May 2011 has enabled extra services to run all day which have replaced the additional shuttle trains running between Camden Road and Stratford stations in the morning and evening peaks.[13]

Future proposals[edit]

Crossrail 2[edit]

Hackney Central is a proposed stop on Crossrail 2. It would be between Angel and Tottenham Hale or Seven Sisters.[14] The platforms would be underground, with a connection to the existing surface station.

Docklands Light Railway[edit]

In February 2006 the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) Horizon 2020 report, had suggested that the DLR be extended here from Bow Church via Old Ford and Homerton, taking over the old parts of the North London line to link up Poplar and Canary Wharf.[10] However, most of the former North London line between Hackney Wick and Bow Church has been built on.[citation needed].


London Bus routes 30, 38, 55, 106, 236, 242, 253, 254, 276, 277, 394 and W15 and night routes N38, N55 and N253 serve the station.[15][16]


External links[edit]