Just under a decade after it closed to Eurostar trains, the former Waterloo International platforms come back into use this weekend.
But only for three weeks.
Closed in 2007 after the Eurostar moved to St Pancras, they have been dormant, save for the occasional stage play ever since. There are long term plans to bring them back into permanent use, but right now, a temporary opening is essential.
It’s all thanks to the August Blockade, which will see platforms 1-9 closed for extension works to allow longer trains to call at the station. The end result will be a 30% increase in capacity on the platforms, so that longer trains can call there.
To help cope with some of the lost platforms during the upgrade works, the old Waterloo International platforms — number 20 to 24 will come back into use, and over the past few weeks, new ticket gates have been installed.
This Saturday, for the first time in a decade, those platforms will see paying passengers catching trains.
The departure’s timetable for the rest of this Saturday (via Realtime Trains) is trains to Shepperton throughout the day from platform 20 at 17 and 47 minutes past the hour from 6:17am onwards.
Once the August Blockage is lifted, on 28th August, the former Eurostar platforms will go back to sleep until the end of next year, during which time more works are needed to bring the platforms, and the tracks leading to them into permanent use once more.