Location of Wembley Central in Greater London
|Local authority||London Borough of Brent|
|Managed by||London Underground|
|Number of platforms||6 (4 in regular use)|
|London Underground annual entry and exit|
|National Rail annual entry and exit|
|– interchange||0.145 million|
|1842||Station opened as "Sudbury"|
|1 May 1882||Renamed "Sudbury & Wembley"|
|1 November 1910||renamed "Wembley for Sudbury"|
|16 April 1917||Bakerloo line|
|1948||Street level buildings reconstructed within shopping arcade|
|5 July 1948||renamed "Wembley Central"|
|24 September 1982||Bakerloo line service withdrawn|
|4 June 1984||Bakerloo line service re-instated|
|June 2008||Station building demolished for re-development|
|2009-2015||Major re-development of the station and the area.|
Wembley Central is an interchange station on the West Coast Main Line (WCML), London Overground and London Underground on the Watford DC line in Wembley, in north-west London, served by suburban services operated by London Underground and Arriva Rail London and regional services operated by London Northwestern Railway and Southern services. It is on the modest-sized east-west High Road. The station serves Wembley Stadium and the nearby Wembley Arena.
Key to symbols
Services at Wembley Central are operated by London Underground on the Bakerloo line, London Overground, Southern and London Northwestern Railway. The off-peak service at the station in trains per hour is:
London Underground (Bakerloo Line)
London Northwestern Railway
Wembley Central has the appearance of an underground station due to the elevated position of the High Road (where the main entrance was until recently behind a 1940s shopping arcade) and the enclosed nature of the platforms below the raft upon which Station Square is built; it is actually generally at or above the local ground level, having been reconstructed by British Rail in its current form during the 1960s electrification of the West Coast Main Line. It is the first station out of Euston to have platforms on all three pairs of tracks and the combination of the confined space and through trains passing at speed on platforms 3-6 (the main line platforms) create a wind tunnel effect which can be dangerous for passengers.
As a result, the main line National Rail platforms (for Southern, London Northwestern Railway, and Wembley Stadium additional services) are locked out of use for most of the day and entrance is only allowed 5 minutes before the trains are due, the Southern services, which use platforms 5 and 6 (on the slow main line). Passengers alighting from these services must make their way to the end of the platform and staff will lead them out of the station. Gates into these platforms open 5 minutes before the train is expected to arrive.
The station was modernised in 2006 by Silverlink with additional safety features.
When a major event occurs at Wembley Stadium, all London Northwestern Railway services to and from Euston call here always stopping at platforms 5 and 6. Avanti West Coast services are formed of trains which are too long for the platforms and take longer to set down and pick up. As a result, these services will make additional stops at Watford Junction or Milton Keynes, for customers to change onto London Northwestern Railway or Southern services.
Fast London Northwestern Railway services using platforms 5 and 6 are usually longer than the platforms. So, when trains are formed of more than six coaches, customers wishing to board and alight the train must do so from the front four coaches only. British Transport Police officers maintain a high presence on match days, particularly at this station and on all train services.
The passenger footbridge at the London end of the station, completed in late 2006 by civil engineers C Spencer Ltd, carries extra foot traffic to and from the platforms during event days at the nearby Wembley Stadium; the everyday access is at the "country" end of the platforms. In practice, this means the bridge is usually locked and out of use, only being opened when the stadium itself is in use.
Other recent works include the resurfacing of platforms 1 and 2 complete with the installation of curved steel cladding panels also completed by contractor, C Spencer Ltd. The station's staff received refurbished messing facilities and new public toilets have also been installed.
In 2011–12, the station was made step-free, in preparation for the Olympics. A step-free route was provided between the station entrance and platforms 1 and 2 for the first time, with the installation of two new lifts and a stair lift. The toilets were refurbished to make them fully accessible. Two platforms were extended as well. This improvement scheme cost £2.5m.
In June 2008, the London Borough of Brent (Local council) planned that the station was going to be demolished for redevelopment, as part of the Wembley Central Square plan, by St. Modwen construction company (although the plan also included new apartments, shops and open space surface).
London Buses routes 18, 79, 83, 92, 182, 204, 223, 297, 483 and H17 and night routes N18 and N83 serve the station.