Abbey Wood National Rail Elizabeth Line
The station entrance in 2022
Abbey Wood is located in Greater London
Abbey Wood
Abbey Wood
Location of Abbey Wood in Greater London
LocationAbbey Wood
Local authorityLondon Borough of Bexley and Royal Borough of Greenwich
Grid referenceTQ473789
Managed byElizabeth line
OwnerNetwork Rail
Station codeABW
DfT categoryC2
Number of platforms4
Fare zone4
National Rail annual entry and exit
2017–18Increase 3.125 million[2]
2018–19Increase 3.769 million[2]
2019–20Increase 3.825 million[2]
2020–21Decrease 1.413 million[2]
2021–22Increase 2.638 million[2]
2022–23Increase 5.618 [3] million[2]
Railway companies
Original companySouth Eastern Railway
Pre-groupingSouth Eastern and Chatham Railway
Post-groupingSouthern Railway
Key dates
2 March 2016 (2016-03-02)Crossrail station opened, South Eastern only
24 May 2022 (2022-05-24)Elizabeth line opened
Other information
External links
WGS8451°29′28″N 0°07′17″E / 51.4910°N 0.1214°E / 51.4910; 0.1214
 London transport portal

Abbey Wood is a National Rail station in Abbey Wood in southeast London, England. It is between Plumstead and Belvedere stations on the North Kent Line. It is 11 miles 43 chains (18.6 km) measured from London Charing Cross, with services to central London routed via Greenwich or Lewisham, and Elizabeth line services to Paddington and Reading via Canary Wharf and Liverpool Street. The station is managed by Transport for London with passenger services provided by Southeastern, Thameslink and the Elizabeth line.[4] It is the closest railway station to the suburb of Thamesmead, which is connected to the station by local buses. The station platforms are located in the Royal Borough of Greenwich with the station entrance in the London Borough of Bexley.


Station platforms in 2006, looking eastbound

It was opened on 30 July 1849 by the South Eastern Railway, whose operations were handed over to the South Eastern and Chatham Railway in 1899. It became part of the Southern Railway under the grouping of 1923. The line then passed on to the Southern Region of British Railways on nationalisation in 1948. When BR was divided into sectors in the 1980s the station was served by Network SouthEast until the privatisation of British Railways.

During the 1860s William Morris famously used a decorated wagon to commute between this station and his new home at Red House, Bexleyheath, occasionally with his eccentric and artistic house guests.

The ticket office at Abbey Wood was APTIS-equipped by November 1986, making it one of the first stations with the ticketing system which was eventually found across the UK at all staffed British Rail stations by the end of the 1980s.[citation needed]

The station was to be served by the proposed Greenwich Waterfront Transit, however the project was cancelled by Mayor of London Boris Johnson owing to lack of funds.[5]

Elizabeth Line

An Elizabeth line Class 345 (left) alongside a Thameslink Class 700 at Abbey Wood in 2022

Abbey Wood is the terminus of one of two eastern branches of the Elizabeth Line and offers interchange between terminating Elizabeth Line services (at 12 trains per hour on new line) and existing Southeastern and Thameslink services.

The Elizabeth Line provides a link north west to ExCeL London and Canary Wharf, then onwards to the city centre, Heathrow Airport and Reading.

Station buildings

Construction of the new station, 2017

The first station opened with the line in 1849 and was a typical South Eastern Railway brick building with metal platform shelters.

The station has been rebuilt twice over the past 50 years to cater for the changing nature of the area.[6] In 1987 a new station was constructed which, in 2014, was replaced by Network Rail with an interim station whilst the new Crossrail station was constructed. The new station opened on 23 October 2017.[7] It was designed by architects Fereday Pollard and includes step free interchange between platforms and bus connections with the Harrow Manorway, a dual carriageway which runs next to the ticket hall.[8]


National Rail

Services at Abbey Wood are operated by Southeastern and Thameslink using Class 376, 465, 466, 700 and 707 EMUs.

The typical off-peak service in trains per hour is:[9]

During the peak hours, the station is served by an additional half-hourly circular service to and from London Cannon Street via Sidcup and Lewisham in the clockwise direction and via Greenwich in the anticlockwise direction.

Elizabeth line

Elizabeth line services at Abbey Wood are operated using Class 345 EMUs.

The typical off-peak service in trains per hour is:[10]

Additional services run to and from the station during the peak hours, increasing the service to up to 12 tph in each direction.

Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Elizabeth line
  Elizabeth line   Terminus
  Historical railways  
South Eastern and Chatham Railway


Various London Buses routes, including night route N1, serve the station.[11]


London Overground

An extension of the London Overground Gospel Oak to Barking line from Barking across the river to Thamesmead and Abbey Wood was proposed in August 2015.[12] The section from Barking to Barking Riverside opened in summer 2022,[13][14] but there are no current plans to extend the line further towards Abbey Wood. Rather than this, in 2019 Transport for London and City Hall proposed an extension of the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) to serve Thamesmead as part of the proposed Thamesmead and Abbey Wood OAPF (Opportunity Area Planning Framework).[15] A DLR extension was chosen due to lower connectivity benefits of an Overground extension, the low frequency (4 trains an hour) of the Gospel Oak to Barking line, and — most significantly — a construction cost twice as much as the DLR, as the gradients required to cross the River Thames would require large scale tunnelling works when compared to the DLR.[16] Despite making this recommendation, the consultation also noted that an extension of the Gospel Oak to Barking line could provide good orbital transport links in the long term.

Elizabeth line

As of 2021, there were proposals to extend some Elizabeth Line services further east to Gravesend and Hoo Junction; the route is safeguarded and would use one of the two terminating tracks at Abbey Wood and onto either existing National Rail tracks (upgraded for 25 kV AC overhead line electrification) or a separate 4-track line.[17] Another proposal is continuing Elizabeth line services to Ebbsfleet International along existing tracks, although those lines are congested and may delay the Elizabeth line services.[18][19]


  1. ^ "London and South East" (PDF). National Rail. September 2006. Archived from the original (PDF) on 6 March 2009.
  2. ^ a b c d e f "Estimates of station usage". Rail statistics. Office of Rail Regulation. Please note: Some methodology may vary year on year.
  3. ^ "FOI request detail".
  4. ^ "Crossrail: Elizabeth line due to open on 24 May". BBC News. 4 May 2022.
  5. ^ "Boris Spins Another Cancellation". Boris Watch. 31 March 2009. Retrieved 8 June 2012.
  6. ^ David Glasspool (2007). "Abbey Wood". Kent Rail. Retrieved 29 March 2007.
  7. ^ "Abbey Wood's New Station Building Is Now Open". Crossrail Press Office. 23 October 2017. Retrieved 23 October 2017.
  8. ^ "Abbey Wood Station + Crossrail South East Spur". Retrieved 29 April 2022.
  9. ^ Table 200, 201 National Rail timetable, December 2022
  10. ^ "Elizabeth Line Timetable: May 2023" (PDF). Transport for London. Retrieved 25 May 2023.
  11. ^ "Buses from Abbey Wood" (PDF). TfL. 1 October 2022. Retrieved 7 August 2023.
  12. ^ "Thamesmead & Abbey Wood Extension". 11 August 2015. Retrieved 11 August 2015.
  13. ^ "Barking Riverside extension".
  14. ^ "Improvements and Projects - Barking Riverside extension". Transport for London. Retrieved 12 October 2021.
  15. ^ "Workshops about the future of Thamesmead and Abbey Wood opened to public". News Shopper. 31 January 2020. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  16. ^ "Thamesmead and Abbey Wood OAPF - OAPF Transport Strategy - December 2019 Draft" (PDF). Greater London Authority. December 2019. Retrieved 17 April 2020.
  17. ^ "Abbey Wood to Hoo Junction". Crossrail. Retrieved 8 June 2012.
  18. ^ "Crossrail, London". Railway Technology. 15 June 2011. Retrieved 8 June 2012.
  19. ^ Dave Arquati. "Crossrail". Archived from the original on 10 April 2010. Retrieved 8 June 2012.