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Leicester Central in 2003: Part I

So what can still be seen of Leicester Central today?

Approaching the station from the southern end of Great Central Street, it is difficult to tell that the railway has actually closed. It is only when you approach the old entrance gates that the signs for taxi firms and auto repair centres make it clear that the building is no longer a station. Externally, the building still appears to be in good condition with most of the brickwork and terracotta still intact. The wall that British Railways put up to replace to false gables stands out a little conspicuously, but it does still retain the poles that held the British Railways totems. On the curved wall by the gates to the old Parcels Offices, wooden battens are still in place which were used to mount railway notice boards.

Probably the most prominent survivor, and something that has probably been earmarked by several people if the station ever gets pulled down, is the terracotta-tiled frieze over the entrance to the Parcels Office gates. Apart from one of the capping tiles, this remarkable relic still stands proud with the wording still as prominent as it was when the station was first built. Inside the building, bricked up doorways and windows are still visible, and in the Booking Hall subway, the remains of former British Railways timetables can still be seen pasted to the wall - thirty-four years after the line closed.

The old Parcels Offices themselves are also still standing, and are in much the same condition that they were in the 1960's. They have seen a number of uses since the railway ceased to operate - most notably as the home for a Chinese Restaurant cooker supplier. Up on the site of the platforms, it becomes a little difficult to see that there was once a railway here. The industrial units, which replaced the main island platform, still stand, but at the northern end of the old station site, the remains of the bay platforms can be clearly seen. Only the fact that they are an integral part of the All Saints Road bridge below has ensured the survival of this little piece of history.

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This is page 15 of 'All Change!' - The Rise and Fall of Leicester Central Station.
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The main facade of Leicester Central station, as seen on 19th July, 2002. Much of the structure is still intact, although the ornate false gables and clock tower have long since been removed. On the wall above the entrance (which replaced the gables) are two steel poles which once held British Railways totem signs.

The main facade of Leicester Central station, as seen on 19th July, 2002. Much of the structure is still intact, although the ornate false gables and clock tower have long since been removed. On the wall above the entrance (which replaced the gables) are two steel poles which once held British Railways totem signs.
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Vehicular access to Leicester Central's parcels offices was via a pair of wrought iron gates, located to the left of the station frontage on Great Central Street. Above the gates stood this fabulous piece of terracotta moulding which read 'GREAT CENTRAL RAILWAY' curving around the top. The centre of the tile work features some ornamental scroll work, while the words 'PARCELS OFFICES' ran across the bottom.

Vehicular access to Leicester Central's parcels offices was via a pair of wrought iron gates, located to the left of the station frontage on Great Central Street. Above the gates stood this fabulous piece of terracotta moulding which read 'GREAT CENTRAL RAILWAY' curving around the top. The centre of the tile work features some ornamental scroll work, while the words 'PARCELS OFFICES' ran across the bottom.
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Still standing proud are the former Parcels Offices at Leicester Central Station. Since the station's closure in 1969, the buildings and offices have been used as industrial premises. The station platforms would have been to the left of the photograph, while the main entrance was to the right. Note the sandstone and terracotta finials and ornamentation on the building's gable ends.

Still standing proud are the former Parcels Offices at Leicester Central Station. Since the station's closure in 1969, the buildings and offices have been used as industrial premises. The station platforms would have been to the left of the photograph, while the main entrance was to the right. Note the sandstone and terracotta finials and ornamentation on the building's gable ends.
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