The original Curzon Street Station (dating back to 1838) - A Birmingham Gem!

The old Curzon Street Station was the first mainline station to open in Birmingham in 1838. It closed to passengers in 1893 and to freight in1966. It is now part of HS2.


Where is Curzon Street Station?

The original Curzon Street Station building dating back to 1838 is on New Canal Street, Eastside, Birmingham, B5 5LG. The Grade I listed building is a part of the HS2 redevelopment site.

 

In brief

The original Curzon Street Station was the original terminus of the London and Birmingham Railway and opened in 1838 to passengers. After New Street Station opened in 1854 passenger use declined and the station was last used by passengers in1893. It continued to be used for goods until 1966. There was a Parcelforce depot to the rear of the building until 2006.

Curzon Street StationCurzon Street Station from the car park in Eastside (February 2011). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Curzon Street Station - history

Birmingham Station (as it was originally known) was opened in June 1838. The first train from London arrived in September 1838. The architect of the building was Philip Hardwick and it was built in the Greek Revival style. It was the terminus for the London and Birmingham Railway and the Grand Junction Railway. It's use as a passenger station was short lived, as the station was a bit too far from the centre of town.

Curzon Street StationThe London & Birmingham Railway, Curzon Street Station, 1838. Publisher: E C & W Osborne. Printer: E Y Moody Bros. Public Domain. Birmingham Museums Trust collection.

 

Curzon Street StationEngraving - Birmingham Station, Curzon Street, 1839. Topographical Views - Wilkinson Collection Vol iii. Public Domain. Birmingham Museums Trust collection.

 

Curzon Street StationCurzon Street Station (August 2009). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

After New Street Station was opened in the cente of town in 1854, the station was renamed to Curzon Street Station (in 1852). This was after the London & Birmingham merged with the Grand Junction, to form the London and North Western Railway in 1846. Most services were diverted to New Street, and Curzon Street was only being used as excursions by the 1870s. The final passenger services to the station was by 1893.

Curzon Street StationTopographical view of Birmingham, from the Birmingham Museums Trust collection. Ink Drawing. Curzon Street Station, Birmingham. By John L. Baker, 1950. Public Domain. Birmingham Museums Trust collection.

 

The station continued to be used for goods until 1966, and the platforms and original train sheds were demolished in the same year. The site was later used as a Parcelforce depot until it closed in 2006.

Curzon Street StationCurzon Street Station (September 2011). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

The building has been a Grade I listed building since 1952. The architecture is inspired by that in Rome. It was mirrored the Euston Arch (demolished in the 1960s) at the other end of the line in London. Birmingham City Council acquired the building in 1979. There is several plaques on the building. A 1947 plaque from the Institutution of Mechanical Engineers commemorates the centenary of their founding at the station in 1847 by George Stephenson (at the Queen's Hotel, now demolished). Another plaque from 1988 commemorating the 150th anniversary of the first train arriving at the station. With HS2 coming, the building will be incorporated into the new High Speed Rail terminus, and will again be connected to London Euston (by the mid 2020s or 2030s).

 

The main entrance to the station building from New Canal Street. HS2 have closed off this road, so access now is restricted. It is planned to be a new Community Hub.

Curzon Street StationCurzon Street Station (October 2020). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

View from the Digbeth Branch Canal in Eastside near Curzon Street. This view will change when the new HS2 station is eventually built.

Curzon Street StationCurzon Street Station (April 2021). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

View of Curzon Street Station from the Cross City Line. With the ever changing skyline, would be completely unrecognisable to what the then town was like back in 1838.

Curzon Street Station

Curzon Street Station (June 2021). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

A look inside!

In June 2014, Birmingham's Hidden Spaces gave visitors free access to Curzon Street Station (only the ground floor and basement) and was an opportunity to see inside of the building before HS2 took it over.

Curzon Street Station

Curzon Street Station

Curzon Street Station

Curzon Street StationBirmingham's Hidden Spaces: Curzon Street Station (June 2014). Photography by Elliott Brown

 

Watch this space!

We await with interest the development, use and opening of this magnificent old building! 

Project dates

02 Jun 2021 - On-going

Passions

History & heritage, Civic pride, Transport
Classic Architecture

Contact

Your Place Your Space

Jonathan Bostock

0121 410 5520
jonathan.bostock@ yourplaceyourspace.com