Snowdown was opened in 1914 as Snowdown and Nonington halt. As with other halts, it had no station buildings, but was provided with two shelters, which remarkably still stand today, albeit in slightly modified form. The main reason the station was built here was to serve the extensive snowdown colliery site, which had an large railyard of its own. This was connected to the mainline via a spur next to the Dover bound side, which was located behind the platform. I will talk a little more of the colliery later.
Passenger traffic at this station is, at time of writing, provided by class 375 electric multiple units.
Starting up on the bridge, before descending the stairs to platform 1, we have a platform information board. After going through a spring loaded metal gate you descend the stairs onto the platform. This was rebuilt as many were into a concrete structure around the mid 1950’s. Across the tracks you can see one of two original shelters, however their glazing has been removed.
Across the road bridge, you will find an electronic ticketing machine, dot matrix display, the only assistance point, and many posters, mainly for changes to service, as well as the onward travel information board.
The abandoned buildings of the colliery can be seen only a very short walk away. The colliery finally closed in 1987, but the sidings were still in use a few years later as storage for the Channel Tunnel project. The old engine shed still stands, and can be seen here.
Although freight traffic is now seldom seen, engineering trains do frequent the line, as can be seen here with a Network Rail test train.
When the colliery closed, the passenger numbers for snowdown quickly declined. Although the history is still here, unfortunately it may only be a matter of time before this is demolished and built on. However if that was to be for residential property, the station would be well placed to take advantage.
Statistics for Snowdown are that it opened in 1914, it has two trains per hour peak time, and 1 train per hour off peak and at weekends, and the 2018/2019 entry and exit figures were 8, 592
I produced a video for this station, as well as all the other top ten least used railway stations in Kent. This can been seen using the link below :
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