The London Overground station at Watford High Street is having to close for upgrade works next month to repair an aging staircase.
Given its age, the staircase is regularly inspected. At the most recent inspection, it was advised that, while it remains safe, a planned replacement should take place as soon as possible to avoid the risk of a short notice repair or closure in the future.
The station has to close, as the station is an island platform, with one staircase down from the ticket hall to the platforms. No staircase, so no passengers.
Fortunately the closure is only for one week — from when services finish on Saturday 10th August to 5am on Sunday 18 August
TfL says that it was decided to carry out the works during this particular week in August as it is traditionally quieter as school holidays begin, and avoids football games at the nearby Watford FC’s Vicarage Road stadium. Engineers had considered doing the work while the station remained open but decided it would be safer and quicker to condense the works into one week to minimise the impact.
The works wont add accessibility to the station — that project being put on hold by the cancellation of the Croxley Rail Link.
During the closure a replacement bus service will operate to the neighbouring stations of Watford Junction and Bushey and tickets will be accepted on local bus routes 142 and 258 to give people alternative ways to complete their journeys.
The staircase has two double flights with a landing in the middle. It was originally built using timber with a central handrail that is held by cast iron posts. During the week’s closure, a new steel structure will be fitted and the original cast iron posts restored and reused. The glazed roof above the staircase will also be replaced to make the walkway brighter and lighter for passengers.