The Station

Pietermaritzburg Station was built in 1892 to replace the much smaller structure built when the railway line from Durban was completed in 1880. It was designed by prolific architect William Street-Wilson, who was also the designer of Port Shepstone Hospital, Emmanuel Cathedral in Durban and Pietermaritzburg’s original City Hall, which burned down in 1898.


The structure is of redbrick and has a cast-steel roof structure, which was the first such to be manufactured locally. It is a very attractive building and is perhaps most famous for being the location where Mahatma Gandhi was ejected from a train, for refusing to move from a ‘Whites Only’ compartment. He a spent a cold uncomfortable night on the platform, an experience which he later described as seminal moment in the formulation of his doctrine of passive resistance.