|Holloway Life image|
This is Philip Aris (@ArisPhilip on twitter). He wants to resurrect the Station that Vanished and bring the Goblin line back to Hornsey Road.
|Philip's image of the station site|
He can tell the story better than I can, so here it is in his words:
Q: How long has this been on your mind?
A: For ages, but I only recently decided to do something about it. The more I've looked at blogs, such as yours, and social media, the clearer it's become to me that today with the internet almost anything is possible. Until a few years ago I might simply have written a letter to the Ham and High suggesting that re opening Hornsey Road Station would be a useful addition to the local area. With luck they would have published it. A couple of readers might have sent in their good wishes, and that most likely would have been the end of the matter.
Now things are different.
In today's tweeting, facebooking, blogging world, I believe it really IS possible to discover if there is the will among local people to improve public transport. If we discover that there is, then I am hoping that this can be translated into action and that politicians and officials can be persuaded to back the project. And then it might actually happen. It must be worth a try. With the electrification of this long-neglected line actually officially agreed to, what better time to have a go?
Q: Where would you put the station?
A: That's easy. right where it was before. On the west side of Hornsey Road, at its junction with Fairbridge Road. The old platforms are still there, though hardly visible through the undergrowth. Opposite the station site on Fairbridge Road was until recently Elson's the Builders Merchants. They have moved their main yard to St Albans and on the land now is Landsdowne Court, a huge and quite attractive block of flats. Family Mosaic are even now building more homes behind this. It is buildings such as these that are changing Hornsey Road. Far more people now live nearby. And more people need better public transport.
Q: I like your Hornsey Rise Village idea. Where would the boundaries be?
A: I don't think it matters very much. Hornsey Road Post Office, a few meters from the Fairbridge Road corner, would make a natural centre to the "village". The council has recently spent a lot on improving the street furniture and laying much better paving. Andrew has recently opened a smart barber's and is hoping to bring in a women's hairdresser as well. There is a fine looking day nursery right opposite the Station site.
The Thai massage shop has closed and generally every week the place looks better!
Q: Hornsey Road is scruffy. Some might say blighted. Why do you think that is?
A: To me it feels like a real place. Obviously it was a centre for builders tradesmen, like Elson's. And many still remain. I hope they always will be there. But why shouldn't people and businesses exist side by side? As the Hornsey Road blogger, you seem to have a true passion for the road and its people. And so do I. I was born about four miles away seventy years ago and I love everything about the area. Yes it's mixed. Good. Yes it's not all a pretty picture postcard. Good again. Hornsey Road has changed before. It certainly won't be the same . Or even in five years or next month. How much better it would all be with a station of its own!
Out there is a huge pool of talent and enthusiasm and experience. It would be terrific if that could be harnessed to help to get one. I'm anyway up for trying.
If anyone thinks they can help, or advise, or dream up an idea or two, it would be great to hear from you.
*Re: title, see below. Any excuse for a Judy reference.