Coventry railway station
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View of platforms.
|Local authority||City of Coventry|
|Managed by||Virgin Trains|
|Number of platforms||4|
|Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
|Annual rail passenger usage*|
|Passenger Transport Executive|
|PTE||Transport for West Midlands|
|National Rail – UK railway stations|
|* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Coventry from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.|
Coventry railway station is the main railway station serving the city of Coventry, West Midlands, England. It is situated about 250 yards to the south of junction 6 of the inner ring road. The station is on the Birmingham loop of the West Coast Main Line (WCML), and is at the centre of a junction where the lines to Nuneaton, and to Leamington converge.
Coventry station has regular services between London Euston and Birmingham New Street on the West Coast Main Line. Other services are extended to/from Wolverhampton, Preston, Glasgow and Edinburgh Waverley. There are also long distance CrossCountry services to Manchester to the north, and Oxford and Bournemouth to the south. Local services also operate between Coventry-Nuneaton and Northampton.
The station has the PlusBus scheme where train and bus tickets can be bought together at a saving.
The original station was built in 1838 as part of the London and Birmingham Railway and could be entered from Warwick Road, where two flights of stairs took the passengers down to the platform. Within two years it had been replaced, with a new larger station, a few hundred feet nearer to Rugby, this time, accessed via Eaton road. In the late 19th century the Coventry tram network extended to the station at Eaton Road. The original station remained in service as the station masters offices, until the station was redeveloped in the early 1960s by the London Midland Region of British Railways.
The new 1840 station saw a significant number of modifications and extensions over the years, there was an engine shed, water column and turntable, in its later days an inclined walkway from the platform directly to Warwick Road for summer excursions, and a parcel depot formed from old carriages. However, the station was constrained by bridges at either end of the station, Stoney Road Bridge to the south, and Warwick Road bridge to the north. The bridges effectively restricted the station to two lines, and prevented the platforms from being extended.
In the early 1960s both bridges were widened, and the old station finally demolished and re-built, this time with room for four platforms instead of two. At the time it was demolished in 1960, some parts of the old station were 120 years old. The present station with its four platforms was completed in 1962 and is now a Grade-II listed building.
The new station featured a new parcel depot, used to manage the large number of mail order catalogue packages coming into Coventry at the time. The depot was serviced by its own platforms from the Rugby end. The depot has now been replaced by a multi-storey car park, although some of the platforms and an electrification gantry remain.
Coventry Station is of note in that it once had automatic ticket barriers but Virgin Trains removed them in 2008.
Motive Power Depot
The London and Birmingham Railway opened a small motive power depot at the west end of the station in 1838. This was replaced by a larger depot in the fork between the Leamington and Rugby lines, in 1866. This was enlarged in 1897 and rebuilt in 1957 but closed 17 November 1958 and was demolished. Locomotives were then serviced at the former Great Western Railway depot at Leamington Spa.
The station is served by CrossCountry, London Midland and Virgin Trains. In the past, it has also been served by Silverlink, but these routes were transferred to Central Trains in 2004. Central Trains and Virgin CrossCountry services were respectively transferred to London Midland and CrossCountry in 2007.
There is a small yard at the Birmingham end of the station, in front of the shopping centre that was once part of Coventry's yard, that is used by London Midland for the stabling of electric traction units, no heavy work is carried out at Coventry as that is done at either Soho in Smethwick (for Class 323 EMU) or Northampton Siemens depot (Class 350 & 321 EMUs), previously the 321 EMUs were maintained at Bletchley TMD in Buckinghamshire. All diesel units are stabled at Tyseley in Birmingham where they are cleaned, maintained and refuelled. These units are only used on the local service to Nuneaton.
Until 2004, Coventry had a direct service to Nottingham via Leicester, but this was discontinued because Network Rail took away the ability for trains coming from Coventry to cross to the Leicester line at Nuneaton. Before Central Trains was broken up, there was talk of restoring the service, but since services are on the line to Leicester are now part of Cross Country, it is unlikely.
Also, when Cross Country was handed over to Arriva, the route via Wigan and Preston was excluded from the franchise and was included in the West Coast Franchise. Subsequently, CrossCountry now uses the route via York to get to Scotland so Coventry lost its few direct trains to places in the North West besides Manchester.
From the December 2013 timetable change however, the city's links to the northwest & Scotland have been restored following a timetable recast by Virgin Trains & Network Rail. Some of the current Euston to Wolverhampton and New Street to Glasgow & Edinburgh services have been combined into through Euston – Birmingham – Glasgow/Edinburgh workings, giving regular links to London, Birmingham, Glasgow and Edinburgh.
The current day time service:
- 6 trains per hour to London Euston – three express and three semi-fast via Northampton
- 7 trains per hour to Birmingham New Street
- 1 Cross Country train per hour to Manchester Piccadilly via Birmingham New Street
- 1 train per hour to Glasgow Central or Edinburgh Waverley
- 1 train per hour to Nuneaton
- 1 train per hour to Leamington Spa and the south, usually Bournemouth (Cross Country)
In addition to the usual ticket office, the station has a travel centre for information, tickets for advance travel, ferry services, for rail passes, and other services.
|Opening times||Ticket Office||Travel Centre|
(Information about the Travel Centre is not included in the External Link 'station information' below)
- AA Street by Street. Coventry Rugby (2nd ed.). AA Publishing. May 2003. p. 2. ISBN 0-7495-3973-9.
- Roger Griffiths and Paul Smith, The directory of British engine sheds:1 (Oxford Publishing Co., 1999), p.163. ISBN 0 86093 542 6.
- GB National Rail Timetable December 2015 – May 2016, Table 65
- GB National Rail Timetable December 2015 – May 2016, Table 51
- GB National Rail Timetable December 2015 – May 2016, Table 63
- An Historical Survey Of Selected LMS Stations Vol. One Dr R Preston and R Powell Hendry. Oxford Pub. Co. (1982, Reprinted in 2001) ISBN 0-86093-168-4
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Coventry railway station.|
- A number of historic photographs of Coventry Station dating from 1838 to the rebuilding in 1962 can be seen at warwickshirerailways.com