Author Topic: Ugly railway stations  (Read 5913 times)

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #60 on: September 19, 2017, 12:10:01 AM »
Found a couple of ugly stations:


Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #61 on: September 19, 2017, 12:18:57 AM »
Thinking of places that are probably bleak I naturally thought of Newport. What the fuck is this?!



A little known fact that Pink Floyds plans for the Wall went beyond an album, stage show and film into a series of Gerald Scarfe designed pieces of public architecture.

Sony Walkman Prophecies

  • Chatto & Windus
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #62 on: September 19, 2017, 12:28:27 AM »
The 80s ones are by far the worst aren't they? The little 'vernacular' clocks and Duplo-style pediments make me want to gouge my eyes out. At least brutalism makes no concessions to a half-remembered past: just a vast elongation of weathered concrete, take it or leave it.

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #63 on: September 19, 2017, 01:03:57 AM »

https://goo.gl/images/jnNAUN

Wakefield Kirkgate. It's been renovated in the past few years but by christ it was awful.

I once had to work there one Saturday night and due to one thing or another I had to wait in the car park right at the front of the station for a couple of hours. After the last train had been and the passengers had left, dozens of rats appeared from every drain pipe, drain, holes in the masonry etc. Extremely grim.

Shoulders?-Stomach!

  • Mountain mate
    • http://jackanderton.jamendo.net/
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #64 on: September 19, 2017, 06:51:59 AM »
Yep I can back that up. The northern rail literature at one point was fixed to the crumbling ruined remains of a wall. Perhaps they thought it would fall down in the process and save them a job.

MoonDust

  • Member
  • **
  • I ALWAYS WENT TO THE CIRCUS AS A CHILD
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #65 on: September 19, 2017, 09:16:31 AM »
Following buzby's post about what Wigan North Western used to look like, and the general nationwide remodelling of Victorian railway stations, do you think that all these ugly stations we're posting in here, the Victorians thought the same about a lot of their stations? It seems a common theme that contemporary architecture always splits opinion when it's built, and only gains "that looks alright" status years, some times centuries later. Must have been the same for the Victorians, so there's some consolation that the ugly as fuck stations around Britain today will be appreciated at some point in the future.

I mean, Huddersfield Railway station was voted best station façade in Britain a few years ago (not posting it here, one of the other thread, it's well nice!) but it's neoclassical in design. If Jonathan Meades documentaries are to be believed, neoclassical was the brutalism of the 1800s, most of the public fucking hated it. Thought it was ugly as sin. So if CaB was around in the 1800s, perhaps Huddersfield's Victorian neoclassical facade of the railway station would have been posted in the Ugly railway stations thread.

Funny how collective taste changes over the decades.

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #66 on: September 19, 2017, 09:48:19 AM »
I have to say I've never been a fan of Berlin Hauptbahnhof. I mean, look at it:



Emblematic of much of the architecture used for Berlin's showcase redevelopment projects after the fall of the Wall: nice idea I suppose, but ultimately veering between bland and downright ugly.

The Hauptbahnhof is a ghastly place to navigate yourself around, too - all lifts and escalators and stairs that never lead to the platform you want.

buzby

  • Member
  • **
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #67 on: September 19, 2017, 10:28:50 AM »
Funny how collective taste changes over the decades.
It's mostly about nostalgia-based architectural fads. The Victorians brought back Gothic, Tudor and Renaissance styles in reaction to what they considered the plainness of Georgian and Regency eras. Then the architecture world moved on and at the and of the century they went back to Georgian, and this developed into Edwardian with the introduction of baroque and Art Nouveau influences. Like art, architecture can never be seen to be standing still, and similarly the public tends to dislike the 'shock of the new' and it usually takes at least a generation for buildings to be looked back on with some fondness.

There is a particular problem in Britain (that may be to do with us being an island) in that we genrally tended to look on anything coming from Europe with suspicion. Art Deco made some inroads here, but the subsequent minimalist and Bauhaus- influenced rational styles that developed in Europe either side of WWII (and it's later Brutalist offshoot) never really took a foothold, or in the case of Brutalism were associated with cheap, badly-made and badly thought out public housing and condemed to the wrecking ball.

Personally, I don't mind what style a building is built in, as long as it looks like there's some effort and thought been put in (and it's not too deliberately wacky - I'm looking at you, Gehry). With things like Wigan North Western, the original station was by no means a classic example of Victorian architecture, but someone had at least put some effort in to elevate it above just being functional. It's 1970s replacement is just nothing - a series of nondescript brick boxes with windows built with no style whatsoever. It's an engineering solution with no architectural input (and I say that as an engineer).

Blinder Data

  • Use your library
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #68 on: September 19, 2017, 11:13:28 AM »
I've always liked Preston station's grandiosity, though changing platforms over those narrow bridges can be a pain.

But WTF were they thinking with this recent addition?



Colour, styles, lines - all clashing. What a riddy.

On the subject of Victorian-era stations, there's an inward sigh whenever I pass St Enoch's shopping centre in Glasgow. It replaced a beautiful building, up there with Glasgow Central perhaps.



I've always thought, for one of Scotland's major stations, Glasgow Queen Street provides a pretty unpleasant arrival. Dingy and cramped concourse with a dismal confusing exterior. Hopefully the upcoming refurb will sort it out.




buttgammon

  • You can't trust a man what's made of gas
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #69 on: September 19, 2017, 11:33:32 AM »
Shotton.



Minamilistic.

Yuck! I'm reminded of the Wrexham-Bidston line (I can't remember if Shotton is on it or not but it looks similar), which is one of my least favourite train lines. I used to take the train from Wrexham to Liverpool almost every day and if there was a problem between Wrexham and Chester or Chester and Birkenhead, I had to use it as a back-up. I was used to the Wirral Line, which has a certain elegance in its efficiency, and quite nice stations despite the fact that most of them are just two platforms and a footbridge, so the slowness and general bleakness of that line was very frustrating by contrast.



That's Bidston, where I would have to change trains, standing on that windswept platform for ages before the long, slow leg to Wrexham began. I had to take this train out of Liverpool every weekday for a few weeks about five years ago and literally every time, I was sat next to the same man, who was reading PDFs of fantasy novels on his laptop.

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #70 on: September 19, 2017, 11:33:38 AM »
Yeah Queen Street is horrible.

Some of these aren't too bad when you only see them from the train.

Anyway Swale Halt.




Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #71 on: September 19, 2017, 11:34:45 AM »


Urgh, like being shrunk into the boot grooves of a paedophile mountaineer.

To be fair I don't think it's looked like this for a good five years or so, last time I was there all that was gone and it was a massive building site so it's probably looking a bit swisher now.

I was at Sarajevo's main station recently, which bafflingly has "NO PHOTOGRAPHY" signs everywhere inside and a huge faded advert for Nokia phones from Christmas 2004. Most international routes have been suspended now so the only people in the station were a few dining at the cafes. Classic Yugoslav stuff.


phes

  • Member
  • **
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #72 on: September 19, 2017, 12:01:52 PM »



Colour, styles, lines - all clashing. What a riddy.




Bobby Treetops

  • I'm at an egg farm
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #73 on: September 19, 2017, 12:27:59 PM »
My heart sinks every time the train pulls into Luton Station, and I fucking live there! A worse impression of a town I don't think it's possible to give.



Oof, it's just so depressing with it's completely redundant exterior staircase(there was already an internal one) leading to a cramped, dingy ticket hall that hasn't been refurbished in decades and a shop space that has been home to numerous failed businesses(mainly because no-one in their right mind would want to hang around there for any length of time).

The first time I walked out of Luton Station I looked down to see someone had put a joint out on a dog shit, summing up the place in one simple metaphor.

Thankfully those 60s architects never went near Carlisle Station.



Actually my parents live in a fully functioning train station believe it or not.


buzby

  • Member
  • **
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #74 on: September 19, 2017, 12:31:47 PM »
I've always liked Preston station's grandiosity, though changing platforms over those narrow bridges can be a pain.

But WTF were they thinking with this recent addition?



Colour, styles, lines - all clashing. What a riddy.
Yes, that was on North West Tonight last week, as it was a finalist in the Carbuncle Cup. It's part of the current fad for Gehry-inspired geometrical wackiness, purposely-designed as a reaction against it's surroundings. It was designed by AHR, the same firm who did the similarly Gehry-inspired south entrance of Leeds Station (mentioned previously in the thread). The Leeds entrance benefits for not being attached to a Victorian building, being in amongst some bland modern apartment blocks, and having a far more interesting shape and cladding treatment.

One solution I've seen to adding modern extensions onto old red brick buildings is to use Cor-ten cladding, a steel alloy that weathers to a stable surface rust coating. It was used to clad the existing canopy of the Royal Court theatre in Liverpool, for instance:

It's also being used to clad the new bridges that mate onto the Victorian rail viaducts in the Ordsall Chord project at Manchester Victoria.

If they had used that at Preston instead of the grey I think it would have at least helped it blend with the existing building (though as I say, based on AHR's other projects it was probably intended not to fit in).

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #75 on: September 19, 2017, 12:43:25 PM »
It's mostly about nostalgia-based architectural fads. The Victorians brought back Gothic, Tudor and Renaissance styles in reaction to what they considered the plainness of Georgian and Regency eras. Then the architecture world moved on and at the and of the century they went back to Georgian, and this developed into Edwardian with the introduction of baroque and Art Nouveau influences. Like art, architecture can never be seen to be standing still, and similarly the public tends to dislike the 'shock of the new' and it usually takes at least a generation for buildings to be looked back on with some fondness.

There is a particular problem in Britain (that may be to do with us being an island) in that we genrally tended to look on anything coming from Europe with suspicion. Art Deco made some inroads here, but the subsequent minimalist and Bauhaus- influenced rational styles that developed in Europe either side of WWII (and it's later Brutalist offshoot) never really took a foothold, or in the case of Brutalism were associated with cheap, badly-made and badly thought out public housing and condemed to the wrecking ball.

Personally, I don't mind what style a building is built in, as long as it looks like there's some effort and thought been put in (and it's not too deliberately wacky - I'm looking at you, Gehry). With things like Wigan North Western, the original station was by no means a classic example of Victorian architecture, but someone had at least put some effort in to elevate it above just being functional. It's 1970s replacement is just nothing - a series of nondescript brick boxes with windows built with no style whatsoever. It's an engineering solution with no architectural input (and I say that as an engineer).

Read this in the voice of Jonathan Meades.

Gurke and Hare

  • Fold water. Roll into small cubes.
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #76 on: September 19, 2017, 01:27:19 PM »
Of course buzby's an archaeologyitecture expert. Why wouldn't he be?

The Hauptbahnhof is a ghastly place to navigate yourself around, too - all lifts and escalators and stairs that never lead to the platform you want.

It's terrible - when I was in Berlin earlier in the year, I arrived on a normal train and had to transfer to the S-Bahn. I seemed to be going up escalators for about an hour. Of course, it suffers from the same issue that all modern railway stations do, which is that the powers that be seem to think that what people want when they're going to catch a train is a fucking massive shopping centre.

That fucking Preston extension should have won the Carbuncle Cup, certainly over the actual winner that I didn't think was bad. That's the trouble with the Carbuncle Cup - there's an unspoken assumption there that anything modern is bad.

Serge

  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • New Music, Night And Day
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #77 on: September 19, 2017, 01:28:18 PM »
I should let Serge in here, but anyway, Derby is one of the emblems of cultural vandalism:




Clearly a Magistrate's court someone put the wrong label on. The interior is more like a decommissioned leisure centre.

Indeed, it's an absolute crime that this was allowed to happen. Then again, I get posts from a group on Facebook with photos of Derby from 50-100 years ago, and they've effectively got rid of about 95% of the interesting buildings in this town and replaced them with shitty modern boxes. I like a lot of modern architecture, but whoever did the designing in Derby didn't have a clue. So the removal of a proper Railway Station that, as I remember, had no structural problems that might lead to a reasonable excuse for its demolition, is in keeping with the 'Make Derby Desolate' theme that successive councils have been ploughing on with since the '60s.

Worse, I actually worked at the new station for a few years, at the WHSmith (not the one that's there now, it was on the opposite side of the station), so imagine what that did to my brain. Talk about a failure of imagination, I could at least have tried to get a job at one of the record shops. I remember catching trains to the seaside from the old station as a kid, and it definitely felt more like an adventure.



Urgh, like being shrunk into the boot grooves of a paedophile mountaineer.

As Billy says above, this is being 'regenerated' at the moment, but I have no idea what it's going to look like when it's finished. Although I like the Shard, standing right underneath it on a windswept plaza is not the best way to see it. I used London Bridge pretty much every day for eight years, and the section where I had to get my train from is decorated inside with tiles that make it look like a giant men's toilet.

Paul Calf

  • She's mildly cretinous.
  • Golden Member
  • *****
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #78 on: September 19, 2017, 01:34:39 PM »
I lived near London Bridge 'Plaza' for a while when I was working down there and what they're turning it into is fucking bleak.

Gurke and Hare

  • Fold water. Roll into small cubes.
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #79 on: September 19, 2017, 02:12:44 PM »
Angel Road station in north London. Accessible only via the footpath in this photo:



and surrounded by scrap yards. It's probably for the best that hardly any trains actually stop there.

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #80 on: September 19, 2017, 02:14:01 PM »
^

Now there's an album cover waiting to happen, if ever there was one!

Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #81 on: September 19, 2017, 02:20:58 PM »
Wouldn't like to use that station at night but I rather like that photo.

Shoulders?-Stomach!

  • Mountain mate
    • http://jackanderton.jamendo.net/
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #82 on: September 19, 2017, 03:06:17 PM »
Quote
It's part of the current fad for Gehry-inspired geometrical wackiness, purposely-designed as a reaction against it's surroundings

Thing is, when you have time, effort and money you get something great like the Dancing house in Prague.

When you have a train station in Preston it looks like a bird hide made from surplus cladding and looks like it's going to age by...now.

purlieu

  • Woo-hoo, Lord Nimon!
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #83 on: September 19, 2017, 03:18:36 PM »
New Street and Cov are the big one-two here, New Street for being an atrocity on every imaginable level, and Cov because, like the rest of the city centre, it's the worst example of brutalism (a style I generally quite like).

Surprised nobody's mention the pee-pee stained heck-hole that is Stratford International. It looks permanently unfinished, down to the concrete not even being smoothed out. It's like they had loads of plans for this big international station and then halfway through construction, someone told them that they weren't going to bother letting Eurostars stop there anyway. Oh...



One stop along at Ebbsfleet International, something similar greets you

BlodwynPig

  • R.I.P. The Waxwork René
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #84 on: September 19, 2017, 03:27:58 PM »
A walrus in Ebbsfleet?

Serge

  • Silver Member
  • ****
  • New Music, Night And Day
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #85 on: September 19, 2017, 04:34:04 PM »
^

Now there's an album cover waiting to happen, if ever there was one!

Heh, 'Hex' came immediately to my mind when I saw that picture, too....

purlieu

  • Woo-hoo, Lord Nimon!
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #86 on: September 19, 2017, 06:16:45 PM »
Sevenoaks


The flower display on the platform here only serves to highlight how grim the rest of Nuneaton station is.

Mind you, it fits in nicely with the rest of the town.

purlieu

  • Woo-hoo, Lord Nimon!
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #87 on: September 19, 2017, 06:28:09 PM »
Water Orton, the station that time forgot



A regular conductor on the Tonbridge to Strood train often referred to the destination as 'Sunny Strood International'


The picturesque location of New Hythe on display here

Gurke and Hare

  • Fold water. Roll into small cubes.
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #88 on: September 19, 2017, 06:31:49 PM »


Pity, that's got the potential to be a lovely station building if they do it up.

purlieu

  • Woo-hoo, Lord Nimon!
Re: Ugly railway stations
« Reply #89 on: September 19, 2017, 06:41:23 PM »
It'll never happen, it only serves eight trains a day each way.