Harrogate railway station

Coordinates: 53°59′36″N 1°32′15″W / 53.9933°N 1.5374°W / 53.9933; -1.5374
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National Rail
The station in 2021
General information
LocationHarrogate, North Yorkshire
Coordinates53°59′36″N 1°32′15″W / 53.9933°N 1.5374°W / 53.9933; -1.5374
Grid referenceSE304553
Managed byNorthern Trains
Transit authorityWest Yorkshire (Metro)
Other information
Station codeHGT
Fare zone6
ClassificationDfT category C1
Opened1 August 1862
Original companyNorth Eastern Railway
Post-groupingLondon and North Eastern Railway
2018/19Decrease 1.661 million
2019/20Increase 1.771 million
2020/21Decrease 0.353 million
2021/22Increase 1.212 million
2022/23Increase 1.503 million
Passenger statistics from the Office of Rail and Road
Railways in Harrogate
to Northallerton via Ripon
closed to passengers 1967
Hornbeam Park
opened 1992
to York
Line to Church Fenton
closed to passengers 1964

Harrogate railway station serves the town of Harrogate in North Yorkshire, England. Located on the Harrogate Line it is 18.25 miles (29 km) north of Leeds. Northern Trains operate the station and provide local passenger train services, with a London North Eastern Railway service to and from London King's Cross running six times per day.


The station was opened by the North Eastern Railway on 1 August 1862.[1] It was designed by the architect Thomas Prosser and was the first building in Harrogate built of brick and had two platforms. Before it opened (and the associated approach lines), the town's rail routes had been somewhat fragmented – the York and North Midland Railway branch line from Church Fenton via Tadcaster had a terminus in the town (see below), but the Leeds Northern Railway main line between Leeds and Thirsk bypassed it to the east to avoid costly engineering work to cross the Crimple Valley and the East and West Yorkshire Junction Railway from York terminated at Starbeck. Once the individual companies had become part of the NER, the company concentrated all lines at a new single depot.

A storm in November 1866 caused a chimney stack to fall through the station roof causing considerable damage.[2] In 1873, a footbridge was added.

The booking office was robbed on 7 December 1868 when thieves drilled through the ticket window covering with a bit and brace, and stole a small amount of cash.[3]

The station platforms were lengthened by 100 yards in 1883,[4] largely as a result of the opening of a second route to Leeds via Wetherby (the Cross Gates to Wetherby Line) in 1876.

In 1892, the actor, Harry Fischer, was shot at by Violet Gordon at the station.[5] She missed and was arrested by the police.

The station was largely demolished in 1964/65 and replaced with a more utilitarian one (with fewer platforms) by Taylor Bown and Miller, Architects (Harrogate). A car park now occupies the site of the former bay platforms on the south side.[6] It coincided with the loss of three of the main routes through the town in the Beeching Axe – both routes via Wetherby closed to passenger traffic on 6 January 1964 and the Leeds Northern route to Northallerton via Ripon on 6 March 1967.[7]

The York branch was included in Beeching's 1963 report, but it was reprieved in 1966 and remains open. The original, attractive wrought iron footbridge remained until the mid-2000s when it was taken down and replaced by a modern plain steel one further down the platform. The station was serviced by a cafe called the 'Circle Bar' until its closure in the 1990s.


A small building was added on the Leeds bound platform in the 2010s facilitating access from East Parade

The station has a staffed ticket office open seven days a week (except late evenings), along with ticket machines. Facilities include a newsagent, key cutters, ATMs, a cafe, photo booths and a waiting room, all located on the main concourse on Platform 1. The station has three platforms, but only platforms 1 and 3 are in operation – platform 2 (an east-facing bay) is not in public use. Full step-free access is available to both main platforms and they are linked by a footbridge with lifts.[8] Ticket barriers were installed in early 2017.[9]


The Monday to Sunday service is generally 2tph to Leeds (southbound); and 2tph to York

Services increase in frequency at peak time to Leeds, resulting in 3tph (trains per hour).

Late evenings an hourly service operates between Leeds, Harrogate and York.

London North Eastern Railway operates six daily services to and from London King's Cross on Mondays to Saturdays.[10] These trains also provide a third hourly clockface service to Leeds every two hours.

Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Horsforth   London North Eastern Railway
East Coast Main Line Via Harrogate Line
Hornbeam Park   Northern Trains
Harrogate Line

Harrogate (Brunswick) station[edit]

Plaque marking the site of Harrogate Brunswick Railway Station

Harrogate's first railway station, Brunswick, was the terminus of York and North Midland Railway's branch line and the first train arrived there on 20 July 1848. The station was situated on the site where Trinity Methodist Church now stands, close to the Prince of Wales roundabout and some distance from either High or Low Harrogate.[11] When the new line of the North Eastern Railway entered Harrogate via a cutting through The Stray, Brunswick closed and the first train into the town centre station was on 1 August 1862.

Ripon Railway[edit]

Harrogate station's platforms and tracks, seen from the pedestrian overbridge.

The town was previously served by a railway, the Leeds-Northallerton Line that ran between Leeds and Northallerton via this station and Ripon.[12] It was once part of the North Eastern Railway and then LNER. The site is now occupied by Starbeck railway station.[13]

The Ripon Line was closed to passengers on 6 March 1967 and to freight on 5 September 1969 as part of the wider Beeching Axe, despite a vigorous campaign by local campaigners, including the city's MP.[12] Today much of the route of the line through the city is now a relief road and although the former station still stands, it is now surrounded by a new housing development. The issue remains a significant one in local politics and there are movements wanting to restore the line.[12] Reports suggest the reopening of a line between Ripon and Harrogate railway station would be economically viable, costing £40 million and could initially attract 1,200 passengers a day, rising to 2,700.[12][14][15] Campaigners call on MPs to restore Ripon railway link.[16]

A61 Station Parade, Harrogate


  1. ^ "Opening of the Harrogate New Railway". Leeds Intelligencer. British Newspaper Archive. 2 August 1862. Retrieved 20 August 2016 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  2. ^ Kendal Mercury – Saturday 10 November 1866
  3. ^ Leeds Times – Saturday 12 December 1868
  4. ^ The Building news and engineering journal: Volume 44, 1883
  5. ^ Morpeth Herald – Saturday 30 July 1892
  6. ^ Harrogate station's former side platforms Eden, A Geograph.org; Retrieved 30 November 2016
  7. ^ Body, G. (1988), PSL Field Guides – Railways of the Eastern Region Volume 2, Patrick Stephens Ltd, Wellingborough, ISBN 1-85260-072-1, p.136
  8. ^ Harrogate station facilities National Rail Enquiries; Retrieved 30 November 2016
  9. ^ "Ticket barriers to be installed at Harrogate Railway Station Stray FM news article 17 November 2016; Retrieved 9 December 2016
  10. ^ "New Azuma trains in Harrogate a 'game changer' for town". The Yorkshire Post. 3 December 2019. Retrieved 3 December 2019.
  11. ^ Bilton Historical Society Archived 17 July 2007 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 18 September 2007
  12. ^ a b c d "Reopening line makes economic sense, says study". NorthernEcho.co.uk. Retrieved 1 February 2009.
  13. ^ Cobb, M. H. (2003). The Railways of Great Britain – a historical atlas. p. 411. ISBN 0711030030. Retrieved 14 January 2016.
  14. ^ "Backing for restoring rail link". BBC News Online. BBC. 11 May 2004. Retrieved 4 January 2010.
  15. ^ "Railway plan may be back on track". The Northern Echo. 7 April 2003. Retrieved 12 May 2019.
  16. ^ "Campaigners call on MPs to restore Ripon railway link". The Yorkshire Post. 18 January 2014. Retrieved 8 December 2015.

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