Rail Service in London

17 April 2011 (Renamed Rail Service in London)

Rail Service

Excluding the Docklands Light Rail, which is separate from what is considered rail service, there re two types of rail networks in London; National Rail and London Overground. National Rail operates passenger train service from London to almost every city and town across England. It is a partnership between private train companies and the government. Private companies such as Virgin, East Midlands, First Capital and many others provide rail service. The whole rail system is simply referred to as National Rail. Old travel guides may have used the now defunct term, British Rail. London Overground is a rail service operating in the outlaying areas of London. London Overground is regulated by Transport for London. Your travel card is valid for use on Nat Rail, LO and DLR as well, as long as it is valid for the zone you are traveling in.

For a really big PDF map that a look at

London Rail Stations

These are all National Rail stations in central London (Zone 1) and the postcode: The (ABC) is the station location code, but it isn’t really too important for you to know that. Some of these stations connect with one another and some do not. Be aware that just because a map shows them connecting doesn’t mean that a train will stop there. Always check the departure board. This LINK is for the PDF map within London and this link is for the PDF map showing rail and tube lines without* London.

Blackfriars (BFR) EC4
Cannon Street (CST) EC4
Charing Cross (CHX) WC2
Eustion (EUS) NW1
Farringdon (ZFD) EC1
Fenchurch Street (FST) EC3
King’s Cross (KGX) N1
Kensington Olympia (WPA) W14
London Bridge (LBG) SE1
Liverpool Street (LIV) EC2
Marylebone (MYB) NW1
Moorgate (MOG) EC2
Old Street (OLD) N1
Paddington (PAD) W2 with service to Heathrow Airport
St. Pancras (STP) N1
Victoria (VIC) SW1 with service to Gatwick Airport
Waterloo (WAT) SE1
Vauxhall (VXH) SW8, Zone 1 & 2

To search for any rail station use this
nationalrail stations search. This has a wealth of good information on each station.

*Fun Fact: In the old days when London was confined inside a wall, it was known to be within (the wall). Parts outside the wall were said to be without.

Service Area

One can use rail service to go to other parts of London in lieu of the tube or bus. However you need to read your rail map as not all stations inter-connect. The purpose of national rail is not for public transport within London however some parts of London are not well served by the tube so the best way to get to some locations is by rail. Please look at the schedules and departure boards for departure time, track and train number. Do not travel beyond your destination or may could pay a penalty fare.


People Having Special Concerns
(Students, Families, Children, Disabled & Elderly)

How to Pay

Oyster Card
Travel Card (Paper, Oyster, London Pass)

Travel Card Usage

As I have said, your travel card must be valid for the zone you are in or going through. If you have a card that is only good for zones 1 & 2 but happen to travel into zone 3 you could be fined. Inspectors stop and ask to check tickets and if not valid they can impose an on-the-spot fine of £50. I was stopped once and asked to produce my pass. I found the event very pleasant.