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Central Station (Main entrance is in community of Castle)

A Grade II Listed Building in Butetown, Cardiff

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Latitude: 51.4757 / 51°28'32"N

Longitude: -3.1792 / 3°10'45"W

OS Eastings: 318201

OS Northings: 175849

OS Grid: ST182758

Mapcode National: GBR KJN.3Z

Mapcode Global: VH6FD.V54L

Plus Code: 9C3RFRGC+78

Entry Name: Central Station (Main entrance is in community of Castle)

Listing Date: 20 August 1992

Last Amended: 21 August 1998

Grade: II

Source: Cadw

Source ID: 20281

Building Class: Transport

Location: Main entrance in castle Square; rear entrance from car park in Penarth Road.

County: Cardiff

Community: Butetown

Community: Butetown

Built-Up Area: Cardiff

Traditional County: Glamorgan

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Completely rebuilt 1932-1934 to designs of Great Western Railway architect's department. Replaced station of 1895-6. Rebuilding included changing level of station approach (formerly at platform level), new booking hall, platform buildings, extending platforms, new passenger subway, new goods depot, new signal boxes and signalling equipment, building 18 new bridges, widening and strengthening permanent way. Modernization of booking concourse late C20.


Booking Hall in natural Portland Stone with Cornish granite plinth.

Platform buildings and subways in glazed blocks (Carrara ware by Doulton). Grey granite plinths to platform buildings.

Portland stone Booking Hall in classical style. Central cupola with clock above slate roof. Elevation facing Central Square has end blocks each of 3 bays with parapet, cornice with central triangular pediment, Doric pilasters and Roman Bath type lunettes with keystones. Between these blocks panel with incised inscription 'Great Western Railway' Beneath inscription, decorated band with Greek Key pattern and medallions. Below this is canopy cantilevered on lattice girders and supported by wrought-iron tie-bars, canopy continues on E return of building. On ground floor, inserted modern fascias to shops. Return to E (left) of 3 bays; parapet and cornice with pediment over central bay, plain frieze, 4 Doric pilaters, central bay very slightly advanced with blind round-headed arch with keystone; beneath canopy, former entrance doorway blocked, with render scribed and painted to imitate Portland stone. Return to W (right) plain. Adjoining wing (W) in Portland stone on grey granite base; openings for former shops and public house; parapet has square openings with iron grilles.

To E (left) of Booking Hall, long angled retaining wall, parapet with square openings with iron grilles. Wall panelled below to take advertisements. At R end of wall, adjoining Booking Hall, doorway to subway of luggage entrance to station. To rear, (S), blind panelling faces platforms.

Platforms: Three island platforms in stone but some extensions in brick, flooring generally in ashphalt below canopies, and flagstones where not covered, but some concrete block replacement. All platforms have canopies with corrugated roof covering. Roof system of lattice girders with central double-pitched area and outer cantilevered canopies. Roof supported by slim cast-iron Tuscan columns, and on corbels in platform buildings. Cross girders of central areas with 3-centred arches; longitudinal girders to each bay with elliptical arches. Boarded wooden valences to roofs. At W end of platforms 3 & 4, roof divides (at former platform 5), and consists of 2 umbrella-type canopies supported on tapering I-beams. At uncovered ends of platforms, lamp standards in concrete.

Platforms 1 & 2. Two blocks of platform buildings, single storey, in cream glazed blocks (Carrara ware by Doulton), brown surrounds for advertising posters. Polished grey granite plinths. Inscriptions 'Cardiff' in raised brown ceramic lettering. Mullioned windows. Wooden doors with oval windows. Block to E contains toilets and buffet (modernised), block to W has offices and waiting room. Interior of waiting room with wood panelling and simple coved ceiling. Two housings to goods lifts with modern corrugated walls at platform level, lift housings project above canopies clad in wooden weatherboarding with hipped roofs. One wooden kiosk attached to goods lift; one free-standing kiosk between main blocks. Additional service block in brick to W of platform.

Platforms 3 & 4. Formerly Platforms 3,4,& 5; W end of platform formerly divided to give extra run-in for trains. Two blocks of platform buildings similar to those on platforms 1 & 2, but narrower. Eastern block has upper storey projecting above canopy, gabled ends, pilaster strips project above parapet; T-bar glazing to windows. Two housings to goods lifts with modern corrugated walls at platform level, lift housings project above canopies clad in wooden weatherboarding with hipped roofs.

Platforms 6 & 7. Two blocks of platform buildings similar to those on other platforms. Western block extended to E, as buffet, and faced in cream ceramic tiles. Further building to W in concrete blocks painted to resemble Carrara Ware. Two housings to goods lifts as other platforms.


Interior walls have granite bases. Devonshire green marble. Pilasters capped with Ashburton black marble. Ceramic tile facings. Booking hall of 11 bays. Blind arcading to rear wall and above entrance. Five central bays have coved glazed ceiling, lit by artificial lighting. Three bays to each end have ceilings with elliptical vaults and are lit from front by tripartite Roman bath type lunette windows. Bays articulated by dark green marble giant Doric pilasters on granite bases. Modernization includes insertion of enquiry office at E end, and shops to N.
Passenger subway has walls faced with cream ceramic tiles with brown tiled surrounds for advertising posters. Two stairs lead to each platform. At foot of stairs to platforms, ceramic tile panels with raised cornices and surrounds, lettering, numerals and direction fingers in brown on cream background.
Stairs to platforms also have walls in cream and brown ceramic tiles, wooden handrails; stairs to mainline platforms have central handrail on iron supports, stairs to branch lines narrower without central handrail. At platform level, stairways have iron rails in simple geometrical 1930's style.

Reasons for Listing

Listed as the most complete example of a GWR major city railway station of the period following the great regrouping of the railway system.

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