When Hampton Court station was opened in 1849, the carriages were pulled by horses and the station was built on an island between the rivers Mole and Ember. Much has changed in the last century and a half. What was once known as the 'Cigarette Island' (named for a boat that was moored on the river) is an island no more, and the trains to Hampton Court from London Waterloo run a little faster, having swapped horses for electricity. The station retains its Victorian architectural features, however – look out in particular for its awning and ornate windows and doors.
Many of the passengers who pass through the station are coming to visit Hampton Court Palace and Gardens, which was the principal residence of King Henry VIII in its heyday. It is now a major tourist attraction with stunning formal gardens that play host to the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show every summer.