Talking of those small shops, Jukes, am I alone in remembering the aquarium shop that was there before? Shubunkins and veiltails swimming around in tanks lit by garish neon lights, and N7s and Britannias thundering above; what more could a small boy wish for?
As far as I know, the original 1872 building at Hackney Downs was obliterated by the quadrupling twenty years later. The one people are referring to was a cavernous arch entered by two inconspicuous doorways off a forecourt abutting Dalston Lane (south side). LNER signage directed you to trains for Enfield, Palace Gates, Chingford, Hertford and Buntingford (all a bit complicated as you knew eg that Chingfords generally left from the island platform, but once in a while would come off the slow lines!
The 1985 "improvements" were anything but IMO. Lifts would obviously work better in the cavernous old ticket hall. I hope some way could be found to make the ramp to the NLR more accessible from all Downs platforms at Downs without traversing flights of stairs, as it was pre 1944. Are the new trains any longer than 9-car 305s were?
The Central is of course a more complicated line than some, exacerbated by the branches at either end (each of which may have its troubles) joining to form the single "pipe" under Central London, which must be one of the most intensively used bits of railway in the world.
Said TRT stabled in the centre road at Leytonstone, and duly fazed the punters, who thought it might me the Epping shuttle service. Few if any noticed it was a non-standard train (one part looked like 1938 stock - is that right)!
What was really annoying at about 1300 was the total lack of announcement, and the confusion of any staff, about what was going on. A lot of mystified people were hanging around at Leytonstone. Also the TRT was in a queue of Hainault divertees, labelled "special", which mystified them even more. Loughton was fairly gummed up with trains, and it seemed a bit difficult to get trains out of the 3 platform roads. With the cancellation of route 167 north of Loughton, and the 418 being only hourly, there were plenty of disgruntled passengers about, too.
The D stock was dreadful to travel in when it came into service. Without opening windows, you couldn't breathe. Several times I just had to get out on my habitual journey Westminster-Mile End. At that point, I think they introduced driver opening of doors, but not in winter. Then everybody got confused, so passenger operation of doors was abandoned altogether. And they introduced the "breath of Fresh Air" campaign and inserted quarterlights (very ineffective) to correct the design fault. No, it wasn't general on LU, though some BR trains had it, notably the Shenfield electrics.
Thanks Snoggle, I think safety and capacity issues would probably rule out stairlifts (200 people disgorging from an EB train in the evening peak already pushes the existing stairs towards those issues). A small glass lift in the centre of the subway might work (emerging in the central buildings on each platform) but might not pass the listed building test
Talking to a member of staff the other day, he suggested that Loughton might be among the last of all the outer stations to be dealt with. Debden and Buckhurst Hill are relatively straightforward, the former perhaps in connection with the new Langston Rd Retail Park and/or office-to-residential conversions (130 units planned already). Buckhurst Hill already has it, but LU won't open the gates.Theydon Bois would need a gate onto the severed part of Station Rd. But Loughton, with its listed status and two high-level island platforms might be a difficult nut to crack. Any thoughts?
The BHR project - aka Urban Intensification - is the latest wheeze to up London's population and getting the wads of notes entering TFL coffers. It will, however, make travelling by tube much less easy, especially for anyone driving in from beyond London. C As another example, conversion of car parks to Housing (retaining "some" parking)is planned at every station Buckhurst Hill to Epping inclusive in the infamous Epping Forest draft local plan
As I think I said before, the "new" BHRd built by BR was done on the ultimate cheap - narrow platforms, no canopies, no ease of access. The old BHP was a commodious station with wide platforms. The number of people using the narrow platform now, let alone on electrification, is just too great.