SEmG

Hollingbourne

Hollingbourne was opened by the London Chatham & Dover Railway on 1st July 1884 with the other stations on the Maidstone & Ashford Railway route. The station building is a standard LCDR design based on that of Sevenoaks Bat & Ball and, like Bearsted, Hollingbourne, Harrietsham and the long since demolished Hothfield, was constructed using a rather attractive cream brick.
 
Hollingbourne Station

photograph by Stephen Roffey.

 
As with the other intermediate stations on the Ashford-Maidstone line a dock platform was provided for cattle traffic which was originally sited to the extreme left of the photograph. The goods yard was closed in the 60s and is now woodland, no evidence of the four sidings and goods shed remaining. Freight may once again come to the area, since the railhead for the proposed Kent International Gateway rail-freight interchange would be connected to this line by a new spur constructed between Hollingbourne and Bearstead.

photograph by Stephen Roffey.

Hollingbourne looking east
 
Hollingbourne from the station forecourt The station from the forecourt, showing just how similar it is to nearby Harrietsham. As with Harrietsham, the station retains it's ornate canopy valance. Sadly, the boarded up windows and drab grey paint detract somewhat from the magnificent brickwork. It should also be noted that some scallywag has removed a number of the roof tiles that were replaced when the station was renovated in 1984.

photograph by Stephen Roffey.

 
Also in common with the other intermediate stations on the Ashford-Maidstone line a substantial and attractive platform canopy was provided, this being on the down platform. The canopy mirrors that of the main building and originally sported an ornate valance with the same icicle design that survives on the forcourt canopy. The SE&CR removed the original valance fronts for some unknown reason during their tenure, a piece of vandalism repeated at Harrietsham but nowhere else on the line. Despite being modified during the 1984 renovation, it has still been necessary to cut into the shelter's canopy to allow the passage of international freight trains (out of gauge for the line) following the opening of the channel tunnel link, presumably due to the curvature of the line at this point.

photograph by Stephen Roffey.

Hollingbourne looking east

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This page was created 9 November 2009

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