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Chesham Underground Station Including Water Tower to South and Signal Box to South-East, Chesham

Description: Chesham Underground Station Including Water Tower to South and Signal Box to South-East

Grade: II
Date Listed: 20 July 2011
English Heritage Building ID: 1401704

OS Grid Reference: SP9606801617
OS Grid Coordinates: 496068, 201616
Latitude/Longitude: 51.7051, -0.6111

Locality: Chesham
Local Authority: Chiltern District Council
County: Buckinghamshire
Country: England
Postcode: HP5 1ED

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Listing Text


Underground railway station, opened 1889.

Reason for Listing

Chesham Station, built for the Metropolitan Railway in 1889, is listed at Grade II for the following principal reasons:
* Architectural interest: the most complete surviving example of a late-C19 rural Metropolitan station;
* Historic interest: a vivid reminder of the Metropolitan Railway's early expansion into London's rural hinterland.
* Ensemble value: the station building, signal box and water tower form an unusually coherent and intact group.


The Metropolitan Railway was the world's first underground line, opened in 1863 to ease surface traffic congestion and provide a passenger link between London's main northern railway termini at Paddington, Euston and Kings Cross. From the late 1860s the Metropolitan began to expand gradually through the northern suburbs and into the countryside beyond, where the company reaped large profits from the development of commuter housing. Harrow was reached in 1880 and Rickmansworth in 1885, with the extension to Chesham opening in July 1889; in 1892, however, the line was further extended from Chalfont to Amersham and Aylesbury, leaving the four-mile Chesham section as a shuttle-operated branch line which still operates, although a direct service to Central London is now planned. The booking hall interior was partly remodelled in the 1980s with the introduction of the Underground Ticketing System, but otherwise the buildings have seen little alteration. Measured from Charing Cross, Chesham is the most distant from central London of all the stations on the Underground network.


Underground railway station, opened 1889.

MATERIALS: Entrance building of stock brick with Welsh slate roof; platform canopy with cast-iron columns and timber valancing.

PLAN: L-shaped entrance building with booking hall in short return section to north and offices, waiting room and toilets in longer arm to south. Single canopied platform.

EXTERIOR: Entrance building's short fa├žade to station forecourt has two cross-casement windows with moulded stone heads and cills, flanking central doorway set beneath an off-centre canopy supported on two timber posts with curved braces (the middle post has been removed). Low hipped roof with two brick stacks. Single platform with four-bay canopy, the latter comprising a ridge-and-furrow roof supported on cast-iron columns and decorative openwork spandrel-brackets.

INTERIORS: Booking hall has original fireplace, cornice and matchboard panelling, vertical to dado height and horizontal above. Waiting room has modern tiles below dado but original boarding and cornice above. Original boarded partitions in gents' toilets.

SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: Square brick water tower to south, treated as a Classical composition with keystone relieving arches and dentil course, surmounted by a large iron tank. Timber signal box on brick base opposite platform, with curved eaves brackets and hipped slate roof.

Source: English Heritage

Listed building text is © Crown Copyright. Reproduced under licence.