Monument record MDR9027 - Buxton railway stations (remains of), booking office and screen wall, Buxton

Type and Period (4)

Protected Status/Designation

Full Description

The Booking Office block and the end wall of the train shed with a giant fan window is of the former London and North Western Railway (LNWR) station; and the goods shed is of the former Midland Railway (MR) station. There were originally two almost identical stations at Buxton with overall roofs, positioned either side of a common forecourt. The MR station was opened 1 June 1863 and closed in 1967. The LNWR station was opened 15 June 1864. The former MR goods shed is being used by Peak Rail Operations, who plan to build a new station on the MR site [1984]. (1) The London and North Western Railway (LNWR) and the Midland Railway each opened a terminus at Buxton in 1863. Designed by J Smith, with advice from Joseph Paxton, the two stations stood on opposite sides of a broad courtyard and achieved a remarkable architectural unity by having identical stone gable screens that faced the town from behind the buffer stops. These screens contained a giant lunette and radial glazing with the respective company's name engraved around the outer rim. This rare collaboration between two rival railway companies was achieved at the insistence of the Duke of Devonshire, who was developing Buxton, most of which he owned, in to a fashionable spa town. The Midland Railway station closed in 1967 and was almost completely demolished, leaving only the perimeter wall standing. The train shed of the LNWR station was also demolished and all that now remains is the gable screen and waiting rooms. (2) The screen wall of the former train shed built for the LNWR is a grade II listed structure. It was built in 1863 to the designs of J Smith, with advice from Joseph Paxton. The screen wall is built of course millstone grit with ashlar dressings. It is aligned north-west to south-east, and is on the west side of the railway tracks. It has a short left return and a longer right return, which adjoins the station building. It has a central round-headed archway containing a very large lunette with ornate radial iron glazing bars that are painted white. It has a moulded ashlar surround inscribed ‘LONDON AND NORTH WESTERN RAILWAY CO’ and moulded impost bands. Either side are wide projecting pilasters with a moulded cornice supported by moulded stone corbels. The broad shallow coped gable has a series of round-headed corbel arches beneath. To the left is a slightly lower wall with moulded eaves and a terminal pilaster buttress. The wall has a central round-arched, keyed doorway, above which is a decorative iron bracket, possibly for a lamp originally. This is flanked by single blind panels with a dentilled course. The right return has been lowered, so that what was originally the string course is now the parapet. The wall has a stone plinth and a slightly raised central section, flanked by pilasters. This has a wide centrally-placed segmental arched doorway with a hoodmould. The left return has a moulded stone parapet. The screen wall was listed for its historic interest, as it is regarded as the surviving monument to a unique collaboration between two railway companies. The association of Joseph Paxton, who gave advice on the design, adds further interest to the enterprise. The resulting composition, incorporating a giant lunette with radial iron glazing bars, is at once dramatic and elegant. (3)

Sources/Archives (3)

  • <1> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D. 1984. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology - A Gazetteer of Sites. Part I. Borough of High Peak. p 7.
  • <2> Unpublished document: English Heritage. 2014. Advice Report: Buxton Railway Station. Case Number 1412531.
  • <3> Listed Building File: Historic England. 2011. The National Heritage List for England. NHLE No: 1257936.

Map

Location

Grid reference Centred SK 05994 73804 (369m by 234m)
Civil Parish BUXTON, HIGH PEAK, DERBYSHIRE

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Record last edited

Nov 27 2018 10:30AM

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