Thetford – Thetford Railway Station

Thetford railway station is an attractive flint-faced building which opened to passengers in July 1845. It expanded throughout the late nineteenth century due to the increasing volumes of passengers and it remained a junction station until in 1953 when the line from Thetford to Bury St. Edmunds closed.

The listed building register notes just how important the building is in terms of its heritage:

“There are numerous stations throughout the country that retain three building types but only approximately forty in which a group of four or more types survive. Thetford retains nine, including the loading gauge which would once have been a familiar feature in all country stations but is now an increasingly rare element. Very few stations have survived with this number of buildings, and Thetford thus provides an almost complete picture of an early station that continued to evolve throughout the second half of the C19”.

The main station building isn’t currently in great shape, and most of it isn’t used, but there is an on-going restoration work to protect the fabric of the structure. There are longer term plans to open the former station building back up, which would give a better first impression than its current boarded up state.

Looking down onto the tracks in the direction of Norwich railway station. The track curves off to the left at the end of this photo, with the old line to Bury St. Edmunds once going off the right. It was unfortunate that the line between the two towns closed, as it might have been viable to connect the towns via a circular route, as it’s not as easy as it perhaps should be to connect from Thetford to Bury St. Edmunds by public transport.