Pontefract Monkhill railway station
|Local authority||City of Wakefield|
|Managed by||Northern Rail|
|Number of platforms||2|
|Live arrivals/departures and station information
from National Rail Enquiries
|Annual rail passenger usage*|
|Passenger Transport Executive|
|National Rail – UK railway stations|
|A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z|
|* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Pontefract Monkhill from Office of Rail Regulation statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.|
|UK Railways portal|
Pontefract Monkhill railway station is the busiest station in the town of Pontefract, West Yorkshire, England. The station is on the Pontefract Line managed by Northern Rail but is also served by Grand Central and is 14 miles (23 km) south east of Leeds.
The lines to Leeds via Castleford and Wakefield Kirkgate separate immediately west of the station, which was opened by the Wakefield, Pontefract & Goole Railway (one of the constituent companies of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway) in April 1848. The branch to Castleford (Cutsyke) & Methley Junction was completed the following year (on 1 December) and a pair of short curves were subsequently constructed from the eastern end to link up with the Swinton & Knottingley Joint line following its opening in the spring of 1879. One of these was used by passenger trains between Leeds & Pontefract Baghill until 1964, although it has since been lifted. The Wakefield to Goole passenger service was withdrawn on 2 January 1967 (although trains to and from Goole continued, running instead to Castleford & Leeds) but the line remained open to carry coal to the power stations to the east of Knottingley. Services on this route were subsequently restored in May 1992.
There is an hourly service from Pontefract Monkhill operated by Northern Rail to both Leeds and Wakefield Kirkgate in one direction and two trains per hour to Knottingley in the other. Only one train a day now runs through to Goole.
In January 2009, open access operator Grand Northern was given the go ahead by the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) to operate a service between Bradford Interchange and London Kings Cross  which will call here (giving the station a regular service to the capital for the first time). Three daily paths in each direction were allocated for these new trains, although one morning northbound service used a different route between Doncaster & Wakefield and consequently did not call here.
The service is operated and branded by Grand Central, using refurbished Class 180 units, and started on 23 May 2010. However, according to a recent document submitted the ORR, only 15 passengers a day (on average) are making use of the new service. This is well below the minimum level needed for profitability and this has consequently led the company to ask for permission to withdraw the service at the May 2011 timetable change and divert its remaining trains via Adwick & Bentley. This has not (as of November 2011) been forthcoming though and so for the time being the service remains in operation.
The timetable has though been altered to serve Mirfield in addition to the other intermediate stops since December 2011, although only one of the three northbound trains actually serves both this station and Mirfield (the evening departure from Kings Cross is routed via Adwick & Fitzwilliam and so doesn't call here, whilst the morning one calls but omits the Mirfield stop). All three southbound trains do however call at both during the week.
There is no Sunday service.
- Body, p. 143
- ORR Track Access Applications Decision for the ECML - 28 January 2009 ORR Website; Retrieved 2009-01-29
- RAIL issue 641
- End of the line for rail link? Pontefract and Castleford Express News article; Retrieved 2011-03-19
- Body, G. (1988), PSL Field Guides - Railways of the Eastern Region Volume 2, Patrick Stephens Ltd, Wellingborough, ISBN 1-85260-072-1
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|