LNWR WATFORD JUNCTION - RICKMANSWORTH CHURCH STREET (single line 4½ miles)
CROXLEY GREEN JN - COLNE JN (¼ mile)
(Pass)30.3.2003 Watford High Street Jn - Croxley Green Jn;
3.3.1952 Croxley Green Jn - Rickmansworth;
6.6.1966 Colne Jn - Croxley Green Jn.
(Gds)20.1.1983 Watford High Street Jn - Croxley Mills;
19.9.1966 Colne Jn - Croxley Green Jn;
2.1.1967 Croxley Mills Jn - Rickmansworth Church Street.
Watford Junction (opened 1858); Watford High Street; Rickmansworth r/n 1950 Rickmansworth Church Street.
Watford Junction 1C six-track shed (opened 1872, closed 1965).
Croxley Green Junction.
In 1862 a single line branch between Watford Junction, on the WCML, and Rickmansworth, four miles to the south west, was opened by the Watford & Rickmansworth Railway (W&RR). The W&RR also planned an extension to Uxbridge where it would have linked up with the GWR. The LNWR worked the line, absorbed the company in 1881 and provided about 20 trains on weekdays which covered the 4½ miles in about ten mins. The Watford Junction - Croxley Green Junction section was later doubled. It was electrically worked from 1927 but it failed to attract enough traffic to remain viable and closed to passengers in 1952. Freight services to Rickmansworth Church Street lasted until 1967 but, on the portion to Croxley Mills, they persisted until 1983. Watford Junction - High Street - Bushey remains open as part of the local service between Watford and Euston.
Route - when open
From Watford High Street Junction (TQ111957) it headed SW passing under Wiggenhall Road (A4178) to reach Croxley Green Junction where the line from Bushey trailed in (forming a triangular junction) and the Croxley Green branch diverged west. From there it followed the Colne Valley and after bridging the River Colne and its branches three times in quick succession turned west to pass under Tolpits Lane (A4145). Over the last mile it passed under the Met/GCR joint line, bridged the Grand Union Canal and finally the River Chess beyond which lines fanned out to the coal yard and the single platform Church Street terminus (TQ062941).
Route - today
The Watford Junction - High Street section is still in use by Watford - Euston suburban services. The Riverside Road Community Park in Watford was opened in November 2001, completing the eastern end of the Ebury Way (part of NCN 6 & 61). From Bushey station cross Oxheys Park to pick up the trackbed at Croxley Green Junction where a Sustrans signpost indicates Ebury Way. The branch can then be followed without interruption almost to the site of Church Street station. The branch to Croxley Paper Mills and the west and south sides of the triangular junction south of Watford High Street can also be traced. The intact trackwork continues along the west chord whilst the trackless south chord continues alongside a haulage contractor’s yard up to the missing bridge over Wiggenhall Road.
Watford Junction (still open WCML etc.); Watford High Street still open (Silverlink services); Rickmansworth Church Street demolished - site, including coal yard, occupied by low-cost housing.
bridge over Wiggenhall Road (A4178) demolished; all other bridges in place (one infilled) including: three bridges over River Colne and its branches at Croxley Green Junction in place; bridge carrying Tolpits Lane (A4145) at Hollywell; bridge carrying Met/GC line at Rickmansworth in place and in use; bridges over River Gade, Grand Union Canal and River Chess in Rickmansworth.
Watford Junction (TQ109975) on east side of main line at north end of Watford Junction station, demolished - site now a car park.
Croxley Green Junction (TQ110954) located between Croxley Green Jn and Colne Jn (on the south side of the triangular junction) demolished - no trace.
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