The station is the central railway terminus. It is located in the Paddington area of central London, England and is part of London’s Underground station complex.
Paddington Station is a historic site that, since 1838, has served as the terminus for London’s Great Western Railway and its successors. The station was designed by Isambard Kingdom Brunel and there is much of the current mainline station that dates from as far back as 1854. In 1863 the site was first served by the Underground trains. It was the world’s first underground railway and was the original western terminus of the Metropolitan Railway.
The complex is in Travel card Zone 1 and has recently been modernized. It has a new role as the terminus of the dedicated Heathrow Express service.
Paddington Station currently has 14 terminal platforms, which are numbered 1 through 14 from north east to south west. Platforms 1 through 8 are located beneath the three original spans of the 1854 train shed of Brunel, while the platforms 9 through 12 are located below the fourth span and these platforms were added later. Platforms 13 and 14 are located within the Metropolitan Railway’s old Bishop’s Road station to the Northwest. Immediately alongside are two through platforms, which are numbered 15 and 16 and are used by the Hammersmith and City and Circle lines of the London Underground.
Platforms 6 and 7 are dedicated to the Heathrow Express, while platforms 13 and 14 are usually used only by the 2 and 3 car Turbo trains that are used on local services while platforms 1 through 5 and 8 through 12 are primarily used by the station’s service trains; however, the long distance trains normally use the southwestern platforms, and the local trains use the northeastern platforms.
The station concourse stretches through the head of platforms 1 through 12 and is located below the London end of the 4 mainline train sheds. The platforms 13 and 14 can only be reached from the footbridge which runs across the northwestern end of platform 12 and gives access to all of the platforms.
The location between the rear of the station concourse and the Great Western Hotel is traditionally known as The Lawn. Originally, it was occupied by sidings and unroofed, however, it was later made to form part of the station’s first concourse to accommodate pedestrian traffic. Recently, the Lawn has been separated from the concourse by a glass screen wall and reroofed. It is now surrounded by cafes and shops on several levels. There are ticket barriers to platforms 2 through 5 and 10 through 16.