Sunday, July 05, 2015
What remains of Leicester Central
Inspired by a newspaper report that it may be converted to a hotel, I visited Leicester Central yesterday.
This was the city's station on the Great Central line to Marylebone. It opened in 1899 and closed in 1969, having for the last three years been an unstaffed halt on the diesel multiple unit service from Rugby to Nottingham Arkwright Street. It must have been an eerie place to catch a train in those days.
The main building survives, though minus its clock tower, and is now home to a number of car repair businesses. (I did ask before taking a picture inside.)
Go round to the other side of the line and you will find similar businesses occupying many of the arches of the vast viaduct on which Leicester Central stood.
Up above at platform level, the northern half of the site is occupied by light industrial units and the southern half by a public car park. The most substantial remaining structure is the former parcels office, with its exotic gables.
Fragments of some platforms remain - I think the ones shown here were the southern bay platforms. There are similar remains at the northern end of the site, and the lady in the final picture is walking along what would have been the up main line.
All in all, a surprising amount of Leicester Central remains and you can find it almost in the shadow of the city's Highcross Centre.