Altrincham Interchange

Coordinates: 53°23′15″N 2°20′50″W / 53.3875°N 2.3472°W / 53.3875; -2.3472
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National Rail Manchester Metrolink
Altrincham Interchange building, opened 2015
General information
LocationAltrincham, Trafford
Coordinates53°23′15″N 2°20′50″W / 53.3875°N 2.3472°W / 53.3875; -2.3472
Grid referenceSJ770879
Managed byNorthern Trains
Transit authorityTransport for Greater Manchester
Platforms4 (2 National Rail, 2 Metrolink)
Other information
Station codeALT
Fare zoneG
ClassificationDfT category C2
Key dates
20 July 1849Original MSJA railway station opens
3 April 1881MSJA station replaced on current site
6 May 1974Name changed from Altrincham and Bowdon to Altrincham
15 June 1992Metrolink service starts
2018/19Decrease 0.397 million
2019/20Decrease 0.373 million
2020/21Decrease 69,168
2021/22Increase 0.222 million
2022/23Increase 0.248 million
Passenger statistics from the Office of Rail and Road

Altrincham Interchange is a transport hub in Altrincham, Greater Manchester, England. It consists of a bus station on Stamford New Road, a Northern Trains-operated heavy rail station on the Mid-Cheshire Line, and a light rail stop which forms the terminus of Manchester Metrolink's Altrincham line. The original heavy rail element of the station was opened by the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway as Altrincham and Bowdon railway station in April 1881, changing to Altrincham railway station in May 1974. The Metrolink element opened in June 1992. The Interchange underwent a complete redevelopment, at a cost of £19 million, starting in mid-July 2013. The new bus station opened officially on 7 December 2014.


Altrincham Station entrance in 1975, before the introduction of a bus station
A British Rail Class 304 at Altrincham in 1990
Altrincham Station clock tower

The station was opened on 3 April 1881 as Altrincham & Bowdon by the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway (MSJAR) to replace Altrincham (1st) railway station on Stockport Road and Bowdon station on Lloyd Street/Railway Street which both closed that day. All platforms were through, with Nos. 1 and 2 (nearest to the town) being used by the MSJAR.[citation needed]

The Cheshire Lines Committee (CLC) trains from Manchester Central to Northwich and Chester Northgate used platforms 3 and 4. The CLC also operated a service from Stockport Tiviot Dale via Northenden to Altrincham, latterly using Sentinel steam railcars, but this service ceased in late 1939.[citation needed]

The station became part of the London, Midland and Scottish Railway during the Grouping of 1923. The station then passed on to the London Midland Region of British Railways on nationalisation in 1948.[citation needed]

Since 6 May 1974, the station has been named Altrincham.[1] In 1975 a new booking office was opened on platform 4 to serve the car park on the site of the former goods yard. Also in 1975, work began to convert the former station forecourt on Stamford New Road into a bus station, and the Victorian glass-covered canopy over the station entrance was demolished. The new combined Altrincham Interchange bus/rail station was opened in November 1976.[citation needed]

When Sectorisation was introduced in the 1980s, the station was served by Regional Railways under arrangement with the Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive until the privatisation of British Rail.[citation needed]

Regional Railways electric trains between Manchester and Altrincham ceased serving the station on 24 December 1991.[2] The former electric train platforms (1 and 2) reopened for use by Metrolink on 15 June 1992.[3]

A new roof for platform 1 costing £180,000 was installed in 2006. This platform had been uncovered since glazed panels were removed in 2003 due to safety concerns. The new roof is made of coated steel with clear panels to let in the light.[4]

The station clock tower on Stamford New Road, erected in 1880, is a Grade II listed structure.[5][6]


The Interchange was redeveloped in 2013-15 by Laing O'Rourke. The project was partly funded by the Local Sustainable Transport Fund.[7]

The interchange reopened on 7 December 2014, integrating Bus, Rail and Metrolink services again, although the lifts and some roofing in the railway station was not completed until 2015.[8][9]


Looking south to Altrincham Station; the terminating Metrolink tram tracks are to the right, and mainline railway through tracks to the left

Altrincham Interchange has four rail platforms. Two bay platforms are used for Metrolink services. Two further through platforms accommodate train services on the line between Manchester Piccadilly and Chester via Stockport.[10]


There is a basic hourly service in each direction on the Mid-Cheshire line on Mondays to Saturdays with two peak extras to/from Stockport. The through service to Blackpool North ceased to run from 15 December 2008.

On Sundays there were five trains to and from Chester but these all terminated here prior to the timetable change, there being no service onwards to Stockport and Manchester Piccadilly. Through passengers had to use the Metrolink service to continue their journey (connections were advertised in the 2007-8 timetable and National Rail tickets were valid for through trips). From December 2008 however, the service frequency has been improved (to two-hourly each way) and through running to Stockport & Manchester Piccadilly reinstated for the first time since the early nineties. These services continued to Wigan Wallgate and Southport until May 2018; they now all terminate at Manchester Piccadilly.[11]

Metrolink Stop Entrance


Metrolink station
A M5000 at Altrincham Interchange on Platform 1
General information
LocationAltrincham, Trafford
Coordinates53°23′15″N 2°20′50″W / 53.38752°N 2.34734°W / 53.38752; -2.34734
Line(s)Altrincham Line
Other information
StatusIn operation
Fare zone4
Original companyManchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway
Pre-groupingManchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway
Post-groupingManchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway
Key dates
1992Conversion to Metrolink operation

There is a frequent Metrolink service to Manchester and Bury, with a tram every six minutes to Manchester for most of the day (alternate trams running to Bury, avoiding Piccadilly). Monday-Saturday evening and Sunday journeys run every 12 minutes to Piccadilly, with journeys to Bury requiring a change of trams at Piccadilly Gardens.[12]

Altrincham is in Metrolink fare zone 4.[13]

Service pattern[edit]

  • 5 trams per hour to Piccadilly via Sale
  • 5 trams per hour to Bury (peak only)
  • 1 train per hour to Piccadilly via Stockport
  • 1 train per hour to Chester
Preceding station Manchester Metrolink Following station
Terminus Altrincham–Bury Navigation Road
towards Bury
Altrincham–Piccadilly Navigation Road
towards Piccadilly
Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Hale   Northern Trains
Mid-Cheshire Line
  Navigation Road
Historical railways
Line and station open
  Cheshire Lines Committee
Mid-Cheshire Line
Line and station open
Disused railways
Baguley   Cheshire Lines Committee
Stockport, Timperley and Altrincham Junction Railway

Bus services[edit]

The former station forecourt now serves as a Transport for Greater Manchester bus station, providing interchange with local bus services to locations within Trafford. Buses also operate to Stockport, Wythenshawe, Macclesfield, The Trafford Centre, Sale, Hale, Timperley, East Didsbury, Manchester Airport, Bowdon and Warrington. The main bus operator is Arriva North West but other significant operators include Stagecoach Manchester, Warrington's Own Buses, Warrington Coachways and Vale Travel.[14]

There is also a taxi rank.[15]


  1. ^ Slater, J.N., ed. (July 1974). "Notes and News: Stations renamed by LMR". Railway Magazine. London: IPC Transport Press Ltd. 120 (879): 363. ISSN 0033-8923.
  2. ^ Dixon 1994, p. 119.
  3. ^ "Altrincham Metrolink stop : Metrolink". Retrieved 28 November 2018.
  4. ^ "Station roof" Archived 16 June 2008 at the Wayback Machine, This is Trafford - Retrieved 28 November 2006
  5. ^ Historic England. "CLOCK TOWER ON STATION FORECOURT (1067962)". National Heritage List for England.
  6. ^ Dickens, Steven (15 August 2018). Altrincham in 50 Buildings. Amberley Publishing Limited. ISBN 978-1-4456-7459-9. Retrieved 21 September 2021.
  7. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 8 December 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2014.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  8. ^ "Pages - Altrincham Interchange". Archived from the original on 8 December 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2014.
  9. ^ "Confirmed: Altrincham Interchange to open on Sunday | Altrincham Today". Archived from the original on 8 December 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2014.
  10. ^ "Altincham-layout". Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 11 December 2016.
  11. ^ GB National Rail Timetable 2013-14, Table 88
  12. ^ "Metrolink - Tram Times - Altrincham". Metrolink / Transport for Greater Manchester. Retrieved 13 February 2013.
  13. ^ "Metrolink ticket zones map". TfGM. Retrieved 5 December 2018.
  14. ^ "Altrincham Interchange". Transport for Greater Manchester. Retrieved 21 September 2021.
  15. ^ "Altrincham [ALT]". Retrieved 11 December 2016.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]