UK's busiest and quietest railway stations

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
Following on from the forum's old era thread...

UK's busiest and quietest railway stations

...here are the ten busiest and ten quietest overground railway stations in London in 2017~2018:

Busiest -

10th ... Highbury & Islington ... 29,507,772 exits/entries
9th ... King's Cross ... 33,904,758 exits/entries
8th ... St. Pancras ... 34,622,178 exits/entries
7th ... Paddington ... 36,578,292 exits/entries
6th ... Stratford ... 40,077,086 exits/entries
5th ... Euston ... 44,754,816 exits/entries
4th ... London Bridge ... 48,453,496 exits/entries
3rd ... Liverpool Street ... 66,966,512 exits/entries
2nd ... Victoria ... 74,955,332 exits/entries
1st ... Waterloo ... 94,355,000 exits/entries

and the quietest -

10th ... Belmont ... 40,016 exits/entries
9th ... Woodgrange Park ... 37,932 exits/entries
8th ... Crews Hill ... 35,344 exits/entries
7th ... South Merton ... 34,256 exits/entries
6th ... Birkbeck ... 26,318 exits/entries
5th ... Sudbury Hill Harrow ... 25,442 exits/entries
4th ... Morden South ... 22,488 exits/entries
3rd ... South Greenford ... 19,388 exits/entries
2nd ... Angel Road ... 13,300 exits/entries
1st ... Sudbury & Harrow Road ... 11,900 exits/entries

Source: MyLondon

I actually took a quick look at Sudbury & Harrow Road station last week, just before heading into nearby Wembley FC's Vale Farm ground. As well as a dire level of service with only four trains stopping in each direction each day, the station is pretty useless for anyone heading for a Spartan South Mids League match at Vale Farm - there are four morning services in the direction of Marylebone and another four in the evening in the direction of West Ruislip/Gerrard's Cross on Mondays-to-Fridays, and no Saturday or Sunday services at all. The reason for this is probably the station's close proximity to Sudbury Town underground station on the Piccadilly Line (as is the case one stop further up at Sudbury Hill Harrow and its neighbouring Sudbury Hill underground station).

Of those other quiet stations mentioned, South Greenford is very close to Hanwell Town FC's ground.
 

SteveW

Site Admin
Staff member
Joined
Nov 23, 2019
Messages
440
Geoff Marshall ... I have viewed his videos for a long time... and Vickis (should that have an apostrophe, I never know!)
If they make a forum account here they can have their own exclusive section :cool:
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
Geoff Marshall ... I have viewed his videos for a long time... and Vickis (should that have an apostrophe, I never know!)
If they make a forum account here they can have their own exclusive section :cool:
Yep, I like his videos too. Here is a very short video (under two minutes - he usually has a lot more to say about the stations he visits than that) about Sudbury & Harrow Road station...

Sudbury & Harrow Road

...which'd make an ideal station for those heading to Wembley FC, if only it had a more frequent service.

Just a couple of minutes walk away is Sudbury Town underground station, Geoff's favourite tube station in a longer video...

Sudbury Town
 

NDN1984

Ball Boy / Girl
Joined
Dec 17, 2019
Messages
4
Team{s}
Birmingham City

Bordesley Railway Station that has ONE train a week and only exists for matchdays for Birmingham City / Coventry City.
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
The 1938 ex-London Underground rolling stock presently used on the Isle Of Wight railway line is to be phased out, starting later this coming summer...

Isle Of Wight

Ex-tube trains have run on the Isle Of Wight since 1967, when the small amount of line left after Beeching was electrified. The present rolling stock has been in use since 1989, and I have many memories of using this on my year of daily commuting from Ryde to work in a Shanklin hotel back in 1991 (two returns every day, due to split shifts).

1578025152216.png
 

Kirby Knitters

Reserve Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
1,292
Team{s}
The Knitters.
To be replaced by rebuilt 1980s LU stock courtesy of Vivarail who have hardly covered themselves in glory on the Bedford-Bletchley route with a string of failures since starting it last year.
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
News over the past day...

British Steel Redcar

...that British Steel Redcar station received a ticking boost last year after it was named quietest UK railway station in 2017~2018, when it had just 40 entry/exits. In the recently released figures for the year 2018~2019 (up to the end of March), the station received 360 entry/exits. Following the closure of the steelworks in 2015, the railway station was closed to the public in December 2019.

Here is Geoff Marshall's film of the station from March 2019...

Geoff Marshall at British Steel Redcar

==========================

As for the current 2018~2019 top ten least used stations...

=9th ... Sampford Courtenay, Devon ... 186 entry/exits
=9th ... Polesworth, North Warwickshire ... 186
8th ... Lochluichart, Highlands ... 180
7th ... Kildonan, Highlands ... 168
6th ... Elton & Orston, Notts ... 164
5th ... Havenhouse, Lincs ... 158
4th ... Barry Links, Angus ... 122
3rd ... Reddish South, Manchester ... 60
=1st ... Stanlow & Thornton, Cheshire ... 46
=1st ... Denton, Manchester ... 46
 

Cherryhopper

Reserve Team Hopeful
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
531
Team{s}
AFC Bournemouth, Sunderland, Barnet, Verwood Town
Surprised Pilning, South Gloucestershire, didn't make the list. Could only find one train a week stopping there in an old timetable booklet from a few years ago.
 

Hoddy1.

Reserve Team Starter
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
849
Team{s}
Crewe Alexandra.
England.
Sat 18 Jan.

Newport to Pilning.
08-14 - 08-32.
14-14 - 14-32.
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
Surprised Pilning, South Gloucestershire, didn't make the list. Could only find one train a week stopping there in an old timetable booklet from a few years ago.
Pilning station's entry/exit figure for 2018~2019 is apparently 458. There are only two trains a week - the Cardiff-to-Penzance on Saturday morning, and the Cardiff-to-Taunton on Saturday afternoon. In 2016, the footbridge to the westbound platform was demolished to make way for the electrification of the line with overhead cables, so there are no longer any westbound services calling at Pilning.

The reason for it's healthier than expected passenger numbers is that Pilning station has a particularly active local campaign group called 'Footbridge4Pilning'...

Footbridge4Pilning

...who organise regular events, including trips into Bristol, trips via Temple Meads to the seaside at Severn Beach, and contests to see who can catch a train the furthest from Pilning. They have even released a campaign song to support their cause.

Here is a Geoff Marshall video...

 
Last edited:

FatCat

Junior Team Sub
Joined
Dec 8, 2019
Messages
47
Team{s}
Witham Town, Rochdale and West Ham United.
What ever happened to Shippea Hill?
Is it still there?
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
What ever happened to Shippea Hill?
Is it still there?
Shippea Hill is still there, and is still served by just one train a day - the 07:26 to Norwich (Mon~Fri), the 06:20 to Cambridge on Saturday, and the ridiculous 00:15 to Cambridge on Sunday.

However, its passenger numbers for Shippea Hill have seen an increase over the past few years from its low in 2014~16 when it was the quietest British station for two consecutive years...

2014~15 ... 22 entry/exits
2015~16 ... 12 entry/exits
2016~17 ... 156 entry/exits
2017~18 ... 276 entry/exits
2018~19 ... 432 entry/exits


I'm going to guess that the increase in visitors is due to the increased publicity that these quiet stations seem to have received over the past few years. In December 2016, the television show 'Great British Bake Off' filmed a publicity stunt from Shippea Hill and dished out free mince pies to sixteen people who'd caught the one train out there. And in the summer of 2017, Chris Marshall and Vicki Pipe took a crowd to Shippea Hill during their tick of every station in the country. The other thing about Shippea Hill is that it sits out in the middle of open fields miles from anything more than a hamlet (the village of Prickwillow is over three miles away to the west, while the small town of Lakenheath is over four miles away to the south-east), which makes it visually an unmistakable middle-of-nowhere station. In this sense, it's up there with stations like Rannoch, Corrour and Sugar Loaf for properly looking the part, and so I suppose has become in its own way a fun day out (of sorts). In contrast, the present join-quietest station of Denton is on an urban industrial estate north of Stockport, close to the major M60/M67 motorway junction.

The reason why stations like Denton and Shippea Hill continue to exist is best explained by this extract (focusing on one-train-a-week Denton station) from the book 'Tiny Stations' by Dixe Wills...

"It boils down to one thing: economics. The weekly Stockport to Stalybridge service is maintained because a Network Rail report concluded that the cost of closing Denton and [neighbouring] Reddish South and withdrawing the route altogether would be more expensive, once closure notices and objections had been taken into account, than continuing this solitary one-way Friday service. In 2010 someone ran through the sums and calculated that it cost a bargain £96 per run. This works out at just £4,992 per annum (and £96 less than that in years when Christmas Day falls on a Friday), equating roughly to the amount a barrister would charge you to make a photocopy or to think about stapling a document. Suddenly, running one train a week for the benefit of almost nobody seemed like good value for money and most sensible ides anyone ever had.

And that, in a nutshell, is what is called a parliamentary train - a service kept running at a barest level possible to maintain a legal fiction that a station or stations are still open. There are more than a score of them across Britain, and they operate for the same reason as the Denton Flyer or because the rail franchisee is contractually bound to run a service and so follows the letter of the law, if not in spirit.

The term 'parliamentary train' is derived from a progressive Act of Parliament called the Railway Regulations Act. It was brought in by proto-Communist Prime Minister Sir Robert Peel in 1844 in order that poorer people might be able to afford to travel. It enforced the provision of 'at least one train a day each way at a speed of not less than 12 miles an hour including stops, which were to be made at all stations, and of carriages protected from the weather and provided with seats; for all which luxuries not more than a penny a mile might be charged'. It's instructive that the writers of the Act anticipated that the private railway companies would attempt to get around the new law by running non-stopping seatless, roofless trains that crawled along so slowly that their penny-a-mile fares would still make them unattractive to passengers when compared to normal services. Clearly, the parliamentarians understood the stuff of which the men of these boardrooms were made.

Shamefully, the Act is no longer in force but the derogatory name such trains were given at the time (and which gets an airing in Gilbert and Sullivan's 'The Mikado', no less) got passed on to any train that runs for some other purpose than to provide a service for would-be travellers. Nowadays, parliamentary trains are also sometimes known a 'ghost-trains'. Our old friend Shippea Hill is an obvious example of a station 'served' by such trains, as is Teesside Airport, which was made virtually redundant when the entrance to the airport was moved, though it somehaow avoided being made a request stop."
 

Scotty BUFC

Junior Team Regular
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
110
Team{s}
Boston United
And in the summer of 2017, Chris Marshall and Vicki Pipe took a crowd to Shippea Hill during their tick of every station in the country.
Geoff Marshall...
 

Scotty BUFC

Junior Team Regular
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
110
Team{s}
Boston United
Yep... GEOFF!!

CHRIS Marshall is a Southampton fan I employed by mistake in 2005.
With a similar name to guy from the BT adverts and My Family!
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
Moorside railway station in Swinton, on the Wigan to Manchester Victoria line, has been closed "for the foreseeable future" following a serious arson attack on 17th February. It comes just a month after the station had been reopened following an extensive refurbishment.

1584064408730.png
 

Oxpete

Youth Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
398
Team{s}
Pompey
Progress on the site of the new Reading Green Park station, which'll hopefully be open by the end of 2020 and will serve Reading FC's Madejski Stadium...

1590282843083.png
 

Kingsmere

Junior Team Star
Joined
Dec 7, 2019
Messages
128
Team{s}
Rampant Rangers
Much work taking place on the route of the Bicester to Bletchley extension. Depot been built between Bicester and Launton. A number of other sites across the Vale of Aylesbury.

New ballast laid and old track lifted at the level crossing east of Launton. Various places of with trees and land clearance.

Also I presume some related to HS2 in the area as it crosses said line.

Big billboard in Winslow about the new station.
 

Chris1963

Youth Team Starter
Joined
Mar 10, 2020
Messages
268
Much work taking place on the route of the Bicester to Bletchley extension. Depot been built between Bicester and Launton. A number of other sites across the Vale of Aylesbury.

New ballast laid and old track lifted at the level crossing east of Launton. Various places of with trees and land clearance.

Also I presume some related to HS2 in the area as it crosses said line.

Big billboard in Winslow about the new station.
About time too I should say! I did notice the billboard in Winslow when I was travelling by bus to the game at Buckingham United in February, but there was still no sign of any recent work having being done on the trackbed which was in a waterlogged state despite the weather having been relatively dry for the past few days,
 

Latest posts

Top
AdBlock Detected

Polite request!

NLM relies on advertising to pay the bills to stay online . Could I ask that you disable your AdBlocker for this site. Alternatively if you are a registered user you can remove all ads and get other benefits for as little as £1.50 a month. Just go to your Profile and click on Account Upgrades. Most visitors will see this message only once per visit...... Thanks

I've Disabled AdBlock    No Thanks