Describe Online


We thank Mr Gildas Le Guevel, the Duty Manager, for escorting us through this area and providing valuable information which greatly assisted our survey.

The information in this section doesn't conform to our normal practices, being nore narrative than structured. This is because anyone with special needs would be escorted by staff throughout this area. The following information is therefore given to enable customers to choose where they wish to go whilst waiting for their train.

Please note that most of the retail outlets are in the concourse, whilst there are refreshments and a WH Smith store within the restricted area.

Checking In

Customers will be escorted through the manual gates at either end of the gate line, before proceeding north towards the security check. This is a standard airport-style check for which jackets, metal and electronic items must be scanned separately, whilst customers go through the x-ray scanners. There's a row of nine pillars, east/west , behind the gate line, then seven x-ray scanners.

You continue north, passing through British then French passport control, into a large concourse. There are three rows of pillars, about 4 metres apart, extending north along this area.

The Concourse

There's a seating area with seats grouped around the pillars leaving two aisles through the middle and another along each side of the concourse.

North Side, Going East

  storage area
Undercroft Restaurant
passage to toilets
WH Smith
Cafe Nero, with seating area
passage to fire exit

East Side, Going South

  business lounge, two entrances

The Passage to Toilets

This leaves north from the north side of the concourse, between the Undercroft Restaurant and WH Smith.

Left-Hamd (West) Side, Going North

  accessible toilet, push button to open
gents toilets

North End

  fire exit

Right-Hand (East ) Side

  baby changing room
ladies toilets

South End, on a pillar

  two Interlink cash machines, facing north

The left-hand (east) machine gives Sterling, whilst the right-hand one dispenses Euros. Both these machines have spoken interfaces.

To The Trains

There are travellators and lifts to each of the three island platforms, 5 - 6, 7 - 8 and 9 - 10, from west to east.

Although the lifts have spoken announcements, they are code operated by staff only. The lifts are about 30 metres north of Passport Control, the one for platforms 5 - 6 is near the west wall, that for platforms 7 - 8 is in the middle of the concourse, whilst that for platforms 9 - 10 is near the east.

The button configuration inside the lift is the same as that throughout this station.

We left the lift facing north which puts us near coach 5. We continued north from here to coaches 9 and 10, in which special seating for disabled customers is located. There are three steps onto the train. When escorted, you're introduced to the Train Manager who is then aware of where you're sitting. There's no need to book assistance in advance, this is provided as you arrive at check-in. Vision impaired customers are given priority over others when boarding the train, although you are asked to arrive at least 30 minutes before departure. There is tactile paving along platform edges. There are three steps onto the train. At the time of our survey, on platform 7, boarding coach 10, the first was slightly below platform level. The bottom step is open, whilst there's a riser between the second and top. Inside, the accesible toilet is to your right whilst the door into the coach, with special seating is to your left. We were shown the wheelchair space and priority seating just inside this door on our left.

Customers requiring assistance will be met on arrival at their destination.

Each train has 18 coaches, nunbered 1 to 18 from the south.

The travelators are in pairs, always going up. The only ones going down are the arrivals travelators, near the south end of the station. There are two pairs of travellators per platform, one south of the lift takes you south, arriving between coaches 1 and 2, whilst those to the north take you north, we believe these arrive between coaches 10 - 11.

Leaving The Trains

As we move south beyond the beginning of the platforms, we go down a slight slope into the Level 1 concourse. a barrier separates the restricted area from the concourse to the south.

There is a lift opposite the beginning of platforms 9 - 10, which takes you to the arrivals area. This lift is code operated by staff only. Inside the lift, the button configuration is the same as that used throughout the station. See the lifts page for details. You leave the lift facing south into the arrivals hall.

Alternatively, there are travellators from each island platform into this area. The travellators leave from beside coach 1 , from the middle of each island platform. There are escalators south of the travellators from platforms 7 - 8, these are the only escalators in this section of the station.

Having arrived in the arrivals hall we turn back (north) through the controls then turn right (east) into the Customs Hall. We turn left (north) and left again )west) then go through two sets of automatic doors, leading west into the concourse, opposite Costa Coffee.

Back Links

Detailed description

How do I?


© 2009, Terry Robinson