Portishead railway station

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see also Portishead railway station on the Weston, Clevedon and Portishead Railway

Portishead railway station in 1960.jpg
The 1954 Portishead railway station, in 1960
AreaNorth Somerset
Original companyBristol and Portishead Pier and Railway
Pre-groupingGreat Western Railway
Post-groupingGreat Western Railway
Platforms1 (Old station);
2 (New station)
18 April 1867Portishead (Old) station opened
4 January 1954Closed, replaced by a new station 440 yards (400m) away
4 January 1954Portishead (New or BTC) station opened
7 September 1964Closed
Disused railway stations in the United Kingdom
Closed railway stations in Britain

Portishead railway station was opened by the Bristol and Portishead Pier and Railway in 1867; it was approximately 0.5 miles (0.80 km) from the village of Portishead. After the opening of the Pier in 1870, the line was extended with an additional railway station opened by the pier. The Pier station closed first; and the original Portishead station closed in 1954, with a new Portishead station opened nearer the town. The 1954 station closed in 1964 when passenger services were withdrawn from the line.

A resited new station is due to be opened to passenger traffic as part of MetroWest, a scheme to increase rail services in the Bristol area. This will be built about 660 yards (600 m) east of the town centre.[1]


Portishead railway station was opened by the Bristol and Portishead Pier and Railway on 18 April 1867; it was approximately 0.5 miles (0.8 km) beyond the village of Portishead and handled both passengers and goods.[2][3][4] The Pier was opened in 1870 and line was extended to the pier, with an additional railway station opened by the pier.[3] By 1904, this was listed as a goods-only station, known as "Portishead Dock".[4]

In the 1920s, the coal-fired Portishead power station was built adjacent to Portishead railway station; and the power station was extended in 1948 to increase its capacity. In 1949, building work also started on an additional power station, Portishead B power station.[3] This led to the closure and demolition of the original Portishead railway station. It was replaced on the same day, 4 January 1954, by a new station 440 yards (400 m) nearer the centre of Portishead and Bristol[3] to the designs of the Western Region Assistant Architect, Ian J. Campbell.[5]

The 1954 station was closed by the "Beeching Axe" on 7 September 1964, when passenger services ceased on the line.[2][3] Freight services continued on the line until the early 1980s.

Preceding station Historical railways Following station
Line and station closed
  Great Western Railway
Portishead Railway
  Future services  
Pill   Greater Western franchise
Portishead Branch Line


In April 2019 the Department for Transport committed £31.9m to cover the shortfall in finance for MetroWest Phase 1, meaning that funding for the new station and reopened line has now been secured.[6][7] In November 2019 North Somerset Council submitted a Development Consent Order (DCO) application to the Planning Inspectorate, which seeks powers to build and operate the disused section of railway from Portishead to Pill, gain environmental consent to undertake works to the existing freight railway through the Avon Gorge and obtain powers for the compulsory acquisition of land. The Secretary of State for Transport is expected to make a decision within 18 months. Subject to final business case approval, construction work is expected to start on the line in December 2021 and then take around two years to complete.[8][9]



  1. ^ "Portishead GRIP3 report". Archived from the original on 29 October 2012. Retrieved 15 January 2012.
  2. ^ a b Butt (1995), p.189.
  3. ^ a b c d e Crowhurst, Ken (2001).
  4. ^ a b RCH (1904), p.80.
  5. ^ Lawrence, David (2018). British Rail Architecture 1948-97. Crecy Publishing Ltd. p. 48. ISBN 9780860936855.
  6. ^ "Funding secured for Portishead Rail". North Somerset Council. 8 April 2019.
  7. ^ "Money for Portishead". Railfuture. 17 April 2019.
  8. ^ Wilson, Kate (26 June 2019). "Plans to reopen Bristol to Portishead railway ready to be submitted and line could open in 2023". Bristol Live.
  9. ^ ""Nationally significant" rail scheme on track for Portishead". Rail Business Daily. 7 November 2019.


  • 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. ISBN 978-1-85260-508-7. OCLC 60251199.
  • Crowhurst, Ken (2001). Images of England: Portishead. Stroud: Tempus Publishing Limited. ISBN 0-7524-2240-5.
  • The Railway Clearing House (1970) [1904]. The Railway Clearing House Handbook of Railway Stations 1904 (1970 D&C Reprint ed.). Newton Abbot: David & Charles Reprints. ISBN 0-7153-5120-6.