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Name:Shrub Hill Railway Station
HER Reference:WCM98065
Type of record:Monument
Grid Reference:SO 857 552
Map Sheet:SO85NE
Parish:Worcester (Non Civil Parish), Worcester City, Worcestershire

Monument Types

  • RAILWAY STATION (Constructed c1850, VICTORIAN to 21ST CENTURY AD - 1850 AD to 2050 AD)

Associated Events

  • Goods Bridge, Shrub Hill Station (Ref: WCM102108)

Protected Status

  • Listed Building

Full description

Shrub Hill Railway Station: main building with attached wall and lamps

(Formerly Listed as: SHRUB HILL Shrub Hill Railway Station. East Platform at Shrub Hill Railway Station)


Railway station with attached walls and lamps. 1850-54 with later additions and alterations. Attributed by Pevsner to engineer Edward Wilson. Blue-brick laid in English bond with Bath-stone dressings; hipped slate roof with parapeted eaves; 7 stacks, 6 to ridge and 1 to rear roof slope, all with oversailing details and pots.

PLAN: Central full-width and full-height booking hall flanked by waiting, refreshment rooms, offices etc. on 2-floors. The elevations have a large domestic scale and style with sash windows.

EXTERIOR: West Elevation: 2 storeys and basement. 16 (4:1:6:1:4) first-floor windows. Porte-cochère with ridge-and-furrow glazed canopy on fabricated wrought-iron lattice beams supported by cast-iron columns; ornamental timber fascia. Platform canopy on wrought-iron supports. Stone detailing includes plinth coping; ground-floor sill band; moulded string course over first-floor windows and linking rusticated quoins and pilasters; moulded eaves cornice with blocking course over centre 3-bays; door and window surrounds. First-floor windows are 3/3 with sills and moulded architraves; windows to central bay above the canopy are smaller 3/6 sashes in plain reveals with sills but not architraves. The ground-floor windows are mainly 6/6 with moulded architraves; the 4 windows to each end bay have a moulded cornice on ornate scrolled console brackets with shell motif under. The central window to the centre bay has a similar bracketed cornice over paired 6/6 sashes: The replacement fully-glazed flanking doors to the booking-hall have similar moulded architrave and cornice to the windows but no console brackets. The single window to each adjacent bay has a pediment in lieu of a cornice. Single-storey wings with concealed roofs flank the main block; 3 windows in the left-wing and 4 in the right; 6/6 and 3/3 sashes, all in plain reveals with sills and wedge lintels. The rear walls of the flanking wings extend above and beyond the building itself to screen the platform beyond; the walls are pierced by high-level lunette windows with radial, metal-framed, multi-pane glazing; some of these windows form fanlights to gated openings below. Platform elevation: 2 storeys, similar to but less ornate than road frontage with mainly 3/3 sashes to the first-floor and 6/6 to the ground-floor, all in plain reveals with sills and moulded architraves, those to the ground-floor being in timber with vertically boarded dado panelling below. Doors are mainly 4-panel, some with 8-pane overlights, all with moulded architraves.

INTERIOR: little remains of the original booking hall except part of the stone-flagged floor. Some of the offices retain plaster cornices, picture rails, panelled reveals to door openings and moulded architraves.

SUBSIDIARY FEATURES: parapet wall to approach road adjoins canopy. Stucco over brick, central part sits on stone plinth with stone gutter below. Pair of cast-iron lamps on parapet wall identified as 'Revo Tipton'.

HISTORICAL NOTE: the two platforms and four lines of rails with a span of 86 feet, were originally covered by a curved roof of wrought-iron lattice girders and glazed on the ridge-and-furrow principle; this was removed c1936.

(Buildings of England: Pevsner N: Worcestershire: Harmondsworth: 1968-1985: 38, 325, 333; An Historical Survey of Selected Great Western Stations: Potts CR: An Historical Survey of Great Western Stations: Oxford: 1985-: 209; Worcester Daily Times: Not known: Worcester at Work: Worcester: 1903-: 8). {1}

"Railway station opened in 1854, rebuilt in 1865. Shrub Hill Railway Station, built in 1865, is a two storeyed blue brick building with stone dressings, thirteen bays long, and with a wide, glazed canopy on cast iron pillars."{5}

This record includes National Record of the Historic Environment Information provided by Historic England on 9th April 2019 licensed under the Open Government Licence: http://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/3/ {5}

Summary of Building
Railway station, 1852, rebuilt 1865 to the designs of Edward Wilson, engineer for the Oxford, Worcester &
Wolverhampton Railway.

Reasons for Designation
Shrub Hill Railway Station is listed at Grade II, for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:
* a striking composition, where the symmetrical station building with porte cochere stands at the crest of
curved paired ramps, above a sunken forecourt with basement arcade;
* an architecturally accomplished design, with a formal Italianate façade in blue brick with Bath stone
dressings, and a more domestic platform-facing elevation in red brick;

Group value:
* the principal listed railway building at Shrub Hill, with close visual relationships with the Grade II*-listed
waiting room, and Grade II-listed telephone kiosks.

The railway first came to Worcester in 1850, via a single line standard gauge connection to the Birmingham & Gloucester Railway at Abbotswood Junction. Operated by the Midland Railway, this opened on 5 October
1850 to a temporary station, the precise location of which is unknown, although it is likely to have been to the south of the present site, adjacent to Newtown Road, then a principal turnpike serving the City. Its name derives from Shrub’s Hill House, through whose orchard the line passed. The Oxford, Worcester &
Wolverhampton Railway opened between Worcester and Droitwich on 18 February 1852, with a formal
opening on 1 May 1852 by a special train between Evesham and Stourbridge: the line opened fully to
Wolverhampton for goods in April 1854, and to passengers on 1 July that year. It is likely that a more
permanent station to serve Worcester opened at the same time, this being constructed and operated as a
joint venture between the Midland and the Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton railways, which later
became part of the Great Western Railway company. Little information is available about this original station, though it is reported to have been much criticised, and was substantially rebuilt in 1865 to the designs of Edward Wilson, who, from 1858, was Locomotive and Permanent Way Engineer for the Oxford, Worcester & Wolverhampton Railway. This rebuilding may have been instigated by the destruction of a carriage shed in a fire in 1864.
The new station’s two platforms and four lines of rails were originally covered by a glazed ridge-and-furrow
roof of wrought-iron lattice girders; this was removed in 1938. The present platform canopies were added at this point.
The northern goods overbridge was replaced in 2021, replicating the original structure.
The railway station continues to operate using semaphore signals. At the north end of the east platform are a lower quadrant stop signal and a lower quadrant stop and distant signal. While the iron posts, topped with a finial, appear to be original, the brackets and equipment appears to have been replaced. The west platform has disc signalling.
Shrub Hill was a terminus for Motorail, a British Rail service in operation in the second half of the C20 which
enabled cars to be transported by train. Passengers could drive their cars onto special ‘Carflat’ wagons,
where they were secured down, and travel in a railway carriage on the same train, driving their car off at the other end. A utilitarian canopied structure and sidings survive to the south of Platform 1.

Railway station, 1852, rebuilt 1865 to the designs of Edward Wilson, engineer for the Oxford, Worcester &
Wolverhampton Railway.

MATERIALS: constructed from blue brick laid in English bond with Bath stone dressings, with red brick to
secondary elevations. The basement arcade is a red brick construction with stucco render. The roof is slate.

PLAN: the railway passes north-south through Shrub Hill, and the station stands to the west of the tracks.
The station building is a long, roughly rectangular range; it stands on elevated ground and is approached
from the west by curved ramps on either side, between which there is a sunken forecourt with an arcade to
basement-level storage units.

EXTERIOR: a classical building of one and two storeys. The two-storeyed main range is a symmetrical
composition with 4:1:3:1:4 bays articulated by rusticated quoins and pilasters, with a porte cochere in front of the central section. Window openings all have flat-arched moulded stone architraves, with scroll consoles and cornices to the outer bays of the ground floor and pediments to the single bays. Windows are six-over-six sashes on the ground floor and three-over-three above. The plinth, cill band, string course and cornice are dressed stone, contrasting with the blue brick. This main range has a hipped slate roof with several brick chimneystacks. The port cochere has five pitched glazed bays to the roof, which is supported by cast iron Tuscan columns and has a dagger-board fascia. There are three wide openings to the booking hall; two windows with eight-over eight sashes, and a double doorway with six-panelled timber doors.
This main range is flanked by single-storey sections. These are plainer in their treatment, and have some
simple stone dressings and brick banding. A brick parapet conceals the roofs. Their platform-facing
elevations rise to two storeys, having originally supported the glazed roof crossing the tracks. There are
lunette windows with radial, metal framed glazing. These double-height screen walls extend to either side of the flanking ranges and have gated openings with fanlights. There is a listed K6 telephone box to the left of the main entrance (NHLE ref 1486714).
Curving vehicle access ramps create a sunken forecourt in front of the station, where there is a 1:9:1 bay
arcade to basement-level storage. Openings have round arches with moulded stucco. There is stone string
course, above which the elevation rises to form the balustrade to the roadway and porte cochere. There is a pair of cast-iron lamps on parapet wall identified as manufactured by Revo of Tipton.
The platform-facing elevation is red brick with a matchboarded dado. There is a series of openings with
moulded architraves, giving access to the booking hall and ancillary accommodation; some four-panel doors survive, along with eight-over-eight sashes. The platform canopy was installed after the glazed roof structure above the platforms and tracks was removed in 1938; the canopy is constructed from a series of riveted iron posts with axial and cross trusses. Two overbridges link the platform; one roughly centrally, and a second goods bridge to the northern end of the platforms. The central bridge has solid panelled balustrades; the pitched roof structure and iron trusses are presumed to have been added in the 1930s. The bridge is reached by stairs with broad moulded handrails and cast iron newels; balustrades have been infilled. The goods bridge, restored in 2021 has an iron lattice balustrade replicating the original, with a pitched roof covering.

INTERIOR: within the original booking hall part of the stone-flagged floor survives. Some of the offices retain plaster cornices, picture rails, panelled reveals to door openings and moulded architraves. The K8 telephone box on Platform 1 is listed at Grade II (NHLE ref 1393363).

Selected Sources
Books and journals
Boynton, John, The Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway, (2002)
Christiansen, R, A Regional History of the Railways of Great Britain – Volume 7: The West Midlands, (1973)
Jenkins, S C, Quayle, H I, The Oxford, Worcester & Wolverhampton Railway, (1977)
Jenkins, Stanley C, The Oxford, Worcester and Wolverhampton Railway Through Time, (2013)
MacDermot, E C, Clinker, C R, History of the Great Western Railway, Volume 1: 1833-1863, (1927, revised
1964) {7}

Sources and further reading

<1>List: DoE. 1977. List of buildings of special architectural of historic interest. Wychavon District Council.
<2>Cartographic materials: Ordnance Survey. 1884. OS 1884 1:500 map of Worcester. XXIII.4.22.
<3>Cartographic materials: Ordnance Survey. 1884. OS 1884 1:500 map of Worcester. XXX.III.8.2.
<4*>Unpublished document: Napthan, Mike. 2015. Building recording of Goods Bridge at Shrub Hill Railway Station, Worcester. Mike Napthan Archaeology.
<5>Internet Site: Historic England. 2019. National Record of the Historic Environment Monument Database.
<6>Bibliographic reference: Brook F. 1977. Industrial Archaeology of the British Isles; The West Midlands. Indust Archaeology of the British Isles.
<7>Correspondence: Historic England. 2023. Historic England Advice Report.

Related records

WCM98077Parent of: Waiting Room, Shrub Hill Station (Monument)