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New stations

See Criteria | Campaign targets | Coming soon | Recent successes | Interchanges

New and reopened stations are essential to improve communities' and businesses' access to the rail network, serve new areas of development and respond to changing economic circumstances. Over the past half-century more than 400 stations have either reopened or been built completely new. They are listed in the sixth edition of Railfuture's A-Z guide to station and line reopenings since 1960, Britain's Growing Railway, published in 2017.

New stations are generally sponsored locally, rather than by central government. Potential sponsors include:
  • Combined Transport Authorities / PTEs
  • Local authority (generally county council or unitary authority, which has the strategic responsibility for transport)
  • Train operator
  • Network Rail
Potential sources of funding include:
  • Combined transport authorities
  • Developer
  • Local authority
  • Local Economic Partnership
  • Train operator if a franchise commitment
  • Transport Scotland (in Scotland)
  • Welsh Government (in Wales)
In the majority of cases, new stations are funded by a partnership, such as local authority, train operator and developer. Government support may be available for such an approach through specific funds such as the Local Sustainable Transport Fund, or the New Stations Fund. Our new guide, Expanding the Railways, will help stakeholders and campaigners navigate the process of gaining agreement to a new station. Earlier guidance was published in June 2009 by the former Association of Train Operating Companies in "Connecting Communities".

New stations can be expensive, and recent examples range from £2.2m for a single platform unstaffed station, to £12m for a full length two platform station with overbridge and lifts. This means that they generally require significant numbers of daily journeys if they are to be justified. Meanwhile Network Rail are showcasing Maghull North as an example of how to accelerate delivery.

Criteria

  1. New station projects need a business case, a sponsor and funding.
  2. A new station will normally only be considered if it fulfils a new opportunity (such as a housing development or business park) or helps to deal with a transport problem (such as acute traffic congestion).
  3. Location:
    • Accessibility, space for car parking if required and the physical constraints of the site.
    • Proximity to bus routes.
    • How would pedestrians and cyclists access the station?
  4. Operational:
    • What trains would serve the new station? Is there a local service that could stop there, for example, or does the line only carry fast trains?
    • Do the existing trains have capacity for the new passengers, or would more rolling stock be required?
    • Can the timetable be modified to include the additional stop? What effect would this have on turnround times and the rolling stock requirement?
    • Would the signalling be affected? For example, would the new station be close to a level crossing?
    • Is it on a gradient, or a curve?
  5. Planning and consultation:
    • Is a station within the local strategic transport plan?
    • How will it affect the local community?
    • What stakeholder engagement has taken place?
  6. Commercial:
    • What is the likely level of demand? Have surveys been undertaken?
    • Will the new station also abstract passengers from nearby stations?
    • What is the nature of the demand (commuting, educational, leisure?)
    • Could the demand be met more cheaply in other ways?
  7. Value for Money (VfM):
    • Station projects are tested against the Department’s normal appraisal criteria – WebTAG which compares benefits and costs discounted over the life of the project, the benefit:cost ratio (BCR); affordability is another consideration.
Rail Transport for New Homes. New Garden Communities need new stations to serve them. Some New Garden Villages are near existing stations and need good connections with them, by bus service and quality cycling routes for example.

Fuller details of the requirements for a new station are set out in Network Rail's explanation of the New Stations Fund. On 28 February 2020 the third round of the New Stations Fund was launched. Bids for NSF3 had to be submitted by Friday 5 June 2020 (with an extension to 19 June).

Campaign targets

Railfuture propose the following shortlist of candidates which meet these criteria and are lobbying local authorities, Local Enterprise Partnerships and other organisations to bid for the funding which they need:
In Scotland we are campaigning for:
  • East Linton, and Reston stations - a study into a new rail service between Edinburgh and Berwick-Upon-Tweed, including reopening these stations, was submitted to the Scottish minister for transport and the service included in the Abellio ScotRail franchise requirement, but delayed to 2018 by shortage of rolling stock. East Lothian Council and the Scottish Government have since agreed how to find the funding but opening now unlikely before 2021. See project update in August 2020.
In Wales we are campaigning for:
In January 2020 the Department for Transport launched a new £500m Restoring Your Railway fund, comprising three elements: an Ideas Fund, an Accelerating Existing Proposals category, and a third round of the New Stations Fund. Four new station proposals are among the 10 successful bids to the first round of the Ideas Fund announced on 23 May 2020 by the Transport Secretary. They will receive funding support of 75% of costs up to £50k to help fund transport and economic studies and create a business case; future funding to develop projects is subject to agreement of the business case.
In November 2020 the Chancellor of the Exchequer launched his Spending Review 2020 along with the National Infrastructure Strategy, which re-affirms "The government will also deliver on its manifesto commitment to spend £500 million to restore transport services previously lost in the Beeching cuts of the 1960s ....." It goes on to say "The government will provide further feasibility funding for an additional 15 proposals to inform decisions on further development, including reopening ....."
  • Beeston Castle and Tarporley station in Cheshire
  • St. Anne’s Park station in Bristol
  • Ferryhill station in County Durham
and new stations at
  • Waverley in South Yorkshire
  • a station in the Langport/Somerton area of Somerset.
The government is also expanding the third round of the New Stations Fund to £32 million. This will fund the opening of railway stations at
  • Edginswell in Devon
  • Thanet Parkway in Kent
  • St. Clears in Carmarthenshire
and also provide funding to further develop proposals for stations at
(Chapter 2, Levelling up the whole of the UK, Connecting nations and regions.)

Some other proposed stations include:
  • Wedgwood or Barlaston station reopening - the DfT asked bidders to quote, as a priced option, for reopening either in the West Midlands franchise ITT. Technically these Staffordshire stations, south of Stoke-on-Trent, have never been closed, but services at them have been provided by bus since 2003.
  • Okehampton Parkway is seen as part of Devon Metro with two preferred options identified in April 2018. This followed an announcement by Transport Secretary Chris Grayling of plans to reintroduce a trial rail service between Okehampton and Exeter by the end of 2018, as championed by OkeRAIL. In July 2020 it was reported that development was under way to determine the feasibility of restoring passenger services, as the basis for a potential funding decision in early 2021.
  • Doncaster Sheffield Airport Sheffield City Region, Doncaster Council and the Peel Group (owners of Doncaster Sheffield Airport) submitted an outline business case to the Government for a station at the airport on a new loop from the East Coast Main Line. In October 2020 it was turned down by the DfT as it “does not believe that the proposed scheme will deliver value for money in its current guise”.
Many potential new stations are on proposed reopened or new lines, for example:
  • Tavistock (pop.13k) as the principal town in West Devon and part of Devon Metro is understood to be under active consideration by the DfT as part of its Restoring Your Railway 'Accelerating Existing Proposals'. It has been an isolated town since its North station and train services closed in May 1968, and would be re-connected to the rail network at Bere Alston for restored links with Pymouth.
  • Ashington, Bedlington, Newsham for Blyth, and Northumberland Park will all be new mainline stations opened in phase 1 of The Northumberland Line; Seaton Delaval and Bebside are planned phase 2 stations. Other aspirations are for new stations at Seghill, Woodhorn, Newbiggin-by-the-Sea, and Choppington.
This interactive map of proposed new stations in Britain shows where they will be located (the most advanced proposals are marked in green, those with more work to do to prove the case in yellow). Meanwhile remain 'upbeat' about prospects with Railway Station!

Coming soon

On 28 July 2017 the Department for Transport announced the winners of the second round of the New Stations Fund, with a pot of £16m. This provides up to 75% of the cost for construction of five new stations (Bow Street Ceredigion, Horden County Durham, Portway Parkway Bristol, Reading Green Park, and Warrington West) to improve access to the rail network and create new travel, employment and housing opportunities. Two of these (Horden and Warrington West) were included in the shortlist proposed by Railfuture, and Warrington West has been the first of the five to open, on 15 December 2019. Horden, to restore rail access for Peterlee New Town, opened on 29 June 2020.
Other new stations which are funded and in progress are:
Whilst London's Bond Street, Tottenham Court Road, Canary Wharf, and Custom House already have stations on the London Underground or Docklands Light Railway, they will be joining the national rail network with the opening of Crossrail.

Recent successes

2020:
2019:
2018:
2017:
2016:
  • Edinburgh Gateway station was opened officially on Friday 9 December, with the first trains following on Sunday 11 December 2016. Part of the Edinburgh - Glasgow Improvement Programme to electrify lines, it allows rail passengers travelling from the north to reach Edinburgh airport more easily.
  • Kirkstall Forge, on the line between Leeds and Bradford, opened on Sunday 19 June 2016 to serve a £400m mixed use development of the Old Forge site.
  • Lea Bridge - Railfuture had commissioned a study to make the case for improved services in the Lea Valley including this station. Funded from the first round of the New Stations Fund announced by Secretary of State for Transport in Commons Statement, it re-opened with the timetable change on 16 May 2016 - see the Railfuture press release. There was an unofficial opening the previous evening! And then the official opening day.
  • Coventry Arena and Bermuda Park opened on Monday 18 January. Originally announced by DfT in April 2014, work started May 2014, and services were planned to start in June 2015, but construction problems delayed completion and provisional opening dates passed amid controversy over whether Coventry Arena station will be open during events at the stadium. Because the route is currently operated by one-carriage trans they are banned from stopping within an hour of an event ending to avoid overcrowding. Long trains, such as charters, are allowed to pick-up passengers then.
2015:
2014: Pye Corner near Newport opened 14 December, 8 months after work started, with service to Cardiff but not Newport, supported by the first round of the New Stations Fund; in Middlesbrough James Cook University Hospital opened 17 May 2014; Manchester Metrolink light rail station opened 31 March 2014 at Rochdale Town Centre.
2013: Energlyn & Churchill Park - new station opened on 8th December 2013 serving demand for rail travel around Caerphilly, with funding from Welsh European Funding Office; Stratford-upon-Avon Parkway - opened 7 months early on 19 May 2013, adjacent to existing Park & Ride site; Conon Bridge - closed 1960, re-opened 8 February 2013 with services by ScotRail
2012: Fishguard & Goodwick
2011: Armadale, Caldercruix, Drumgelloch (Airdrie - Bathgate line); Buckshaw Parkway, Southend Airport
2010: Dalston Junction, Haggerston, Hoxton, Shoreditch High Street (East London Line Extension); Blackridge (Airdrie - Bathgate line); Sampford Courtenay, Okehampton (summer Sunday service only)
2009: Corby (closed 1966, previously reopened 1987 then closed again 1990), East Midlands Airport Parkway, Imperial Wharf, Laurencekirk, Stratford International
2008: Ebbw Vale Parkway, Llanhilleth, Newbridge, Crosskeys, Risca and Pontymister, Rogerstone (Ebbw Vale line); Alloa, Aylesbury Vale Parkway, Heathrow Terminal 5, Mitcham Eastfields, Shepherds Bush, Stone (services suspended 2004)
2007: Coleshill Parkway (on Birmingham-Nuneaton line), Ebbsfleet International (for international services; domestic services started 2009), St Pancras International, Llanharan
2006: Liverpool South Parkway
2005: Larkhall, Merryton, Chatelherault, Kelvindale (formerly Dawsholm) (Larkhall line reopening); Gartcosh, Rhoose, Llanwit Major, Glasshoughton.

Interchanges

Where lines cross, Railfuture argue for the creation of interchange stations to create new journey opportunities, as for example by the new walkway between London Overground's Hackney Downs and Hackney Central stations. There is potential for new or improved interchanges at:
  • Brixton
  • Brockley
  • Dorking
  • Lewisham
  • West Hampstead

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