Blackpool North railway station
Blackpool North railway station entrance
|Managed by||Northern Rail|
|Number of platforms||8|
|Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
|Annual rail passenger usage*|
|Original company||Preston and Wyre Joint Railway|
|Pre-grouping||LYR and LNWR joint|
|Post-grouping||London Midland and Scottish Railway|
|29 April 1846||Opened as Blackpool|
|1872||Renamed Blackpool Talbot Road|
|17 March 1932||Renamed Blackpool North|
|1974||Rebuilt on site of former excursion platforms|
|National Rail – UK railway stations|
|* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Blackpool North from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.|
|UK Railways portal|
The station was opened in its present form in 1974, and succeeded a previous station a few hundred yards away on Talbot Road which had first opened in 1846 and had been rebuilt in 1898. The present station is based on the 1938 concrete canopy which covered the entrance to the former excursion platforms of the old station.
Blackpool North was on the InterCity network until 2003 when Virgin Trains withdrew HST and Voyager services to London Euston and Birmingham. Former local franchise holder First North Western ran services from Blackpool to London Euston, but these were soon discontinued. Passengers must now change at Preston for InterCity connections: though Virgin have now re-introduced a Monday-Friday service between London and Blackpool North from 15 December 2014.
The first station opened on 29 April 1846 as Blackpool, renamed Blackpool Talbot Road in 1872, and was first rebuilt in 1898. The rebuilt station consisted of two parallel train sheds and a terminal building, in Dickson Road between Talbot Road and Queen Street. Platforms 1 to 6 were located in the sheds, with a larger island between platforms 1 and 2 to accommodate taxis. In addition, there was effectively, in all but name, a separate station at the east end of Queen Street, with open "excursion" platforms 7 to 16, used only in summer.
The station was recommended for closure in the Beeching Report (1963), but following lobbying by Blackpool Corporation it was Blackpool Central—Blackpool's other centrally-located station, but whose site was better-suited for re-development—which closed in 1964.
The main station buildings, train shed & platforms were decommissioned and demolished in 1974, replaced by the current station based on the former excursion platforms.
On 25 November 2010 it was announced that the lines between Preston and Blackpool would be electrified, along with the line between Manchester and Preston. This will result in the semaphore signalling at the station being replaced by modern colour lights controlled from the WCML North Rail Operating Centre in Preston and will also see the station track & platform layout altered (the current eight curved platforms will be reduced to six on a straighter alignment than at present). Work has begun to raise many of the intermediate overbridges to accommodate the overhead wires and the project was due for completion by May 2016, with the line onwards to Manchester following by the end of the year. This has since been pushed back to March 2017 so that the track remodelling & resignalling work can be carried out at the same time as the wiring, reducing disruption to passengers (as only one period of closure will be required). Trains to both Manchester (Victoria & Piccadilly) and Liverpool Lime Street (as well as to London) can then be worked by electric traction.
As can be expected of a terminus railway station for a large town, it is staffed and open for 24 hours a day, and is equipped with payphones, vending machines, toilets and indoor seating, as well as a customer service office and a booking office. Step-free access to the station and platform is available for passengers with wheelchairs or prams, and portable ramps are also available for platform to train access. The station has its own covered concourse and, adjoining the concourse, it has a Pumpkin cafe, as well as a Point shop to Go convenience store. The station also has a 30-space car park, and adjoining bus connections, which can also accommodate Plusbus ticket holders.
As Blackpool is a popular tourist resort, with its famous Pleasure Beach and beaches, there are many measures put in to prevent fare evasion, including automated barrier checks as well as the conductors on the train.
The station is approximately half a mile along Talbot Road from the Blackpool tramway, which is planned to be extended to the station in the near future in a new transport interchange.
- Northern Rail operates as follows:
- 1tph (train per hour) to York via Burnley (Manchester Road), Bradford Interchange and Leeds. These services are operated by Class 158 Express Sprinter units.
- 1tph to Liverpool Lime Street via St Helens Central, with a few extensions to Liverpool South Parkway. These services are operated by Class 142 Pacer units, Class 150 Sprinter units and Class 156 Super Sprinter units.
- 1tph to Manchester Victoria via Chorley, plus one peak service to/from Hazel Grove and Buxton via Manchester Piccadilly. These services are operated by Class 142 Pacer units, Class 150 Sprinter units and Class 156 Super Sprinter units.
- First TransPennine Express operates as follows:
- Virgin Trains operates as follows:
Great North Western Railway has been given permission to run 6 trains a day from London to Blackpool North from 2018.  The London terminus will be either Euston or Queen's Park, depending on network capacity during planned infrastructural work to the West Coast Mainline.  In addition, the intermediate stations at which the service will stop are also dependent upon future capacity. 
Direct weekday services to and from Liverpool Lime Street are due to end in October 2015 when Northern Rail introduce Class 319 EMUs on through workings between Liverpool and Preston (these units already operate on stopping trains between Liverpool & Wigan). The current Hazel Grove to Preston service will be extended through to Blackpool North as a replacement until the Preston to Blackpool section is electrified (sometime in 2017) and through running with electric stock can be reinstated. Direct Sunday services will however remain in operation until at least until the December 2015 timetable change.
- Butt, R. V. J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt, platform and stopping place, past and present (1st ed.). Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. p. 36. ISBN 1-8526-0508-1. OCLC 60251199.
- Hartley, S. and Mitchell, L. (2005) PDF (25.5 MiB), Lancashire County Council Environment Directorate, accessed 30 October 2007, p.23
- "Service will not be back on track". Blackpool Gazette. 27 May 2003. Retrieved 2008-04-16.
- Taylor, Stuart (2005). Kirkham to Blackpool (North) and Fleetwood for the Isle of Man. Bredbury: Foxline. pp. 51–52, 56, 59, 75–76. ISBN 1-870119-74-6.
- "Railways to get £8bn investment". BBC News. 26 November 2010. Retrieved 26 November 2010.
- Network Rail - Electrification in the North West Network Rail website; Retrieved 2013-08-28
- "Electrification to be shunted back into 2017'Blackpool Gazette news article 21-06-2014; Retrieved 2014-09-06
- "Blackpool North (BPN)". National Rail. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
- "Blackpool North Station Plan". National Rail. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
- "Blackpool North". Plusbus. Retrieved 31 May 2015.
- "Blackpool station set for £600,000 first". Blackpool Gazette. 2 November 2007. Retrieved 2008-04-16.
- GB National Rail Timetable 19 May - 7 December 2013 - Tables 41,82 & 97
- Topham, Gwyn. "Virgin has a rival: GNWR to run London to Blackpool west coast rail service". The Guardian. Retrieved 7 August 2015.
- "Northern to sever Liverpool - Blackpool link"Brown, Stefanie, RAIL magazine news article 14 September 2015; Retrieved 23-09-2015
- Northern Rail timetable 10 - Liverpool to Wigan and Blackpool North, 5 October to 12 December 2015Northern Rail; Retrieved 5 October 2015
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Blackpool North railway station.|
- Train times and station information for Blackpool North railway station from National Rail
- Blackpool & Fylde Rail Users’ Association—Blackpool North, accessed 17 October 2007
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
|Terminus||First TransPennine Express
TransPennine North West
Blackpool Branch Line
York - Blackpool Line
Blackpool - York via Manchester Line
WCML Blackpool Branch
|Terminus||Preston and Wyre Joint Railway
Blackpool Branch Line