Hainault London Underground
Station entrance on New North Road
Hainault is located in Greater London
Location of Hainault in Greater London
Local authorityLondon Borough of Redbridge
Managed byLondon Underground
Station codeHAI[1]
Number of platforms3
Fare zone4
London Underground annual entry and exit
2018Decrease 3.63 million[3]
2019Increase 3.64 million[4]
2020Decrease 2.63 million[5]
2021Decrease 1.73 million[6]
2022Increase 2.80 million[7]
Railway companies
Original companyGreat Eastern Railway
Pre-groupingGreat Eastern Railway
Post-groupingLondon and North Eastern Railway
Key dates
1 May 1903Opened (GER)
1 October 1908Closed (GER)
2 March 1930Reopened (LNER)
29 November 1947Closed (LNER)
31 May 1948Opened as terminus (Central line)
21 November 1948Became through station
Other information
External links
Coordinates51°36′12″N 0°05′36″E / 51.6033°N 0.0933°E / 51.6033; 0.0933
 London transport portal

Hainault (/ˈhnɔːt/, /-ɒlt/[8]) is a London Underground station in Hainault, northeast London, England. The station is on the Central line between Fairlop and Grange Hill stations.[9] Since 2 January 2007, the station has been in Travelcard Zone 4.[9] It is also home to one of the three Central line depots.


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The station was opened on 1 May 1903 as part of the Great Eastern Railway's (GER) Fairlop Loop branch line from Woodford to Ilford.[10][11] The line was designed to stimulate suburban growth, but Hainault station was closed on 1 October 1908 due to a lack of custom and did not reopen until 2 March 1930.[12] In 1923, under the 1921 Railways Act, the GER was merged with other railway companies to form the London and North Eastern Railway (LNER). As part of the 1935–1940 New Works Programme of the London Passenger Transport Board, the majority of the loop was transferred from the LNER to form the eastern extensions of the Central line. Although work commenced in 1938, it was suspended upon the outbreak of the Second World War in 1939 and only recommenced in 1946.

Steam train services serving Hainault were suspended on 29 November 1947. From 14 December 1947, the line from Newbury Park to Hainault was electrified to allow empty train movements to the new depot at Hainault. Electrified Central line passenger services, to Central London via Gants Hill, finally commenced on 31 May 1948. The services to Woodford via Grange Hill were reintroduced on 21 November 1948.

Alterations at Hainault included a new island platform on the west side of the station, to allow the bulk of services via Gants Hill to be terminated there as well as allowing access to Hainault Depot. Situated to the north of the station, Hainault is the major train depot at the eastern end of the line. The depot building was completed in 1939 but was used by the US Army Transportation Corps until 1945. It came into use for Central line stock on 14 December 1947.

From the mid-1960s until the early 1990s, the Woodford-Hainault section was largely operated separately from the rest of the Central line, using four-car (later three-car) trains of 1960 Stock.[13] The three-car units had a middle carriage of 1938 tube stock. The trains were adapted for Automatic Train Operation (ATO), and the Woodford-Hainault section became the testing ground for ATO on the Victoria line.[13] Some Victoria line 1967 Stock trains were also used to operate that section[13] and named FACT (Fully Automatic Controlled Train). That separate operation has now been discontinued, the 1960 Stock has been withdrawn, and through trains to Central London now operate via Hainault.[14] The 1960 Stock, along with the rest of the Central line's 1962 Stock, has been superseded by trains of 1992 Stock.

Station improvements

The station has recently been the focus of a refurbishment programme. The ticket office has been refurbished, a new Station Supervisor's Office in the ticket hall was completed in June 2009 and lifts have been installed to allow step-free access to the platforms.[2][15] The lifts are the shallowest on the London Underground network, having a descent of just 18 inches (460 mm).[16]

Services and connections

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

Hainault is half a mile (800 m) from Fairlop Station,[19] which can be seen from the platforms by looking down the line.[20] Central line trains take just 65 seconds on average to travel between the two stations.[20] However the minimum walking or driving distance between the two stations is considerably longer.[19]

London Bus routes 150, 247 and night route N8[21][22] serve the station.

Preceding station London Underground Following station
Fairlop Central line Grange Hill
towards Woodford


Notes and references


  1. ^ "Station Codes" (PDF). Transport for London. Retrieved 27 September 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Step free Tube Guide" (PDF). Transport for London. April 2021. Archived (PDF) from the original on 15 May 2021.
  3. ^ "Station Usage Data" (CSV). Usage Statistics for London Stations, 2018. Transport for London. 23 September 2020. Archived from the original on 14 January 2023. Retrieved 11 October 2023.
  4. ^ "Station Usage Data" (XLSX). Usage Statistics for London Stations, 2019. Transport for London. 23 September 2020. Archived from the original on 9 November 2020. Retrieved 9 November 2020.
  5. ^ "Station Usage Data" (XLSX). Usage Statistics for London Stations, 2020. Transport for London. 16 April 2021. Retrieved 1 January 2022.
  6. ^ "Station Usage Data" (XLSX). Usage Statistics for London Stations, 2021. Transport for London. 12 July 2022. Retrieved 7 September 2022.
  7. ^ "Station Usage Data" (XLSX). Usage Statistics for London Stations, 2022. Transport for London. 4 October 2023. Retrieved 10 October 2023.
  8. ^ Matt Brown (21 July 2016). Everything You Know About London is Wrong. ISBN 9781849944120. Retrieved 26 May 2020.
  9. ^ a b Standard Tube Map (PDF) (Map). Not to scale. Transport for London. November 2022. Archived (PDF) from the original on 7 November 2022. Retrieved 12 November 2022.
  10. ^ Connor 2007, p. IV.
  11. ^ Jarrier, Franklin. "Greater London Transport Tracks Map" (PDF) (Map). CartoMetro London Edition. 3.7. Archived (PDF) from the original on 18 November 2018.
  12. ^ "Railways to Epping and Ongar". Cravens Heritage Trains. 1 October 2011. Archived from the original on 25 November 2018. Retrieved 25 November 2018.
  13. ^ a b c Railfanning London's Railways – Central line
  14. ^ On the branch line…from Woodford to Hainault
  15. ^ "Step-free Tube Guide" (PDF). Transport for London. December 2023. Retrieved 8 February 2024.
  16. ^ Marshall, Geoff (2018). Tube Station Trivia. p. 16.
  17. ^ "Central line timetable: From Hainault Underground Station to Grange Hill Underground Station". Transport for London. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  18. ^ "Central line timetable: From Hainault Underground Station to Fairlop Underground Station". Transport for London. Retrieved 1 March 2015.
  19. ^ a b "Bing Kaarten".
  20. ^ a b "Tube Facts – Stations that are less than 60 seconds apart". Archived from the original on 3 April 2015. Retrieved 4 March 2015.
  21. ^ Hainault Underground Station – Bus
  22. ^ "Buses from Hainault Station and Fullwell Cross" (PDF). Transport for London. 24 August 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2015.