Reddish South railway station
|Managed by||Northern Trains|
|Transit authority||Transport for Greater Manchester|
|Classification||DfT category F2|
Reddish South railway station is a stop on the Stockport–Stalybridge Line in Reddish, Stockport, England. The station, used by only 26 passengers in 2013/14, is one of the quietest on the UK rail network. From May 1992 until May 2018, it was served by only one Parliamentary service per week, the minimum statutory service level required to avoid starting formal closure proceedings. Despite the low passenger numbers, the line itself is used regularly for freight traffic and empty stock transfers.
Reddish South was opened when the line between Stockport and Guide Bridge was completed by the Manchester and Birmingham Railway in October 1845. It was taken over by the London and North Western Railway (LNWR), following a merger of the two companies in 1846. The 19th century civil engineering firm John Brogden and Sons was the contractor.
The station, which consisted of two island platforms, also had a signal box, goods sidings and engine shed. For more than fifty years, it catered for the LNWR mainline services between Manchester and Leeds. All regular Monday to Saturday hourly services would stop at the station. However, express traffic was drastically reduced when services were redirected to Manchester London Road station (now Manchester Piccadilly) in May 1899.
With the redirection of the long-distance express services, the station became a scheduled stop for local traffic. Although the Stockport–Stalybridge Line escaped the 1960s Beeching cuts, when large numbers of cross-country branch lines were closed for being uneconomical, the station and line were gradually rundown by British Rail over the next couple of decades. The remaining original station building on one of the island platforms was demolished and the sidings and engine shed removed. After the line was eventually reduced to a single track, the second island platform was abandoned. One of the track beds was sold off and the other was filled in. The station became a request stop.
For many years, the only service was the 0922 Fridays-only parliamentary train from Stockport to Stalybridge. It stopped at Reddish South at 0926, before continuing to Stalybridge via Denton and Guide Bridge.
In September 2006, open-access operator Grand Central proposed to run services from Bradford Interchange via Huddersfield and the West Coast Main Line to London Euston. This service would have travelled via Stalybridge, Guide Bridge and Reddish South to Stockport.  However, the proposal was dropped after Virgin Trains cited its protection clause preventing any other operators from using the West Coast Main Line.
In May 2007, Network Rail proposed in its North West Route Utilisation Strategy that both Reddish South and Denton stations should be closed while the line remain open for freight and diverted passenger workings. This prompted a campaign to start asking for a regular service from Stockport to Manchester Victoria via Reddish South and Denton.
Quietest station in the UK
Between April 2013 and March 2014, Reddish South was the third-least-used station in Great Britain, after Teesside Airport railway station and Shippea Hill railway station with only 26 recorded passengers. In 2015, passenger figures from the Office for Rail and Road showed that Reddish South had become Britain's fourth-quietest railway station. As of 2018/19, Reddish South became the third least used station in the UK, with just 60 entries and exits. In January 2020, the station was named as the UK's third quietest with just 60 entries and exits between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019.
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
|Heaton Norris||London & North Western Railway
Manchester and Birmingham Railway
- Annual estimated intercity rail passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at this station from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
- Directors’ Minutes: Manchester and Birmingham Railway Co, Public Record Office, RAIL 454/3 and the contract 454/11
- "Point of No Return: All Aboard the Ghost Train". www.mancunian1001.wordpress.com. 7 March 2007. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
- Table 78A (Network Rail). GB eNRT. May 2016.
- "New rail routes planned". The Telegraph. 20 September 2006.
- "Grand Northern drops Bradford-Euston bid". Rail Magazine. No. 602. 8 October 2008. p. 18.
- "North West Route Utilisation Strategy". www.networkrail.co.uk. May 2007.
- MacEinri, N (13 July 2014). "Stockport to Victoria via Reddish South and Denton". Retrieved 7 December 2017.
- "2J44 0846 Stalybridge to Stockport". www.realtimetrains.co.uk. 26 May 2018. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
- "2J45 0945 Stockport to Stalybridge". www.realtimetrains.co.uk. 26 May 2018. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
- "Estimates of station usage". Office of Rail and Road. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
- "Revealed: Britain's busiest and quietest stations". BBC News. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
- "The quietest and busiest train stations in Britain". The Independent. 14 January 2020. Retrieved 14 January 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Reddish South railway station.|
- Train times and station information for Reddish South railway station from National Rail
- Friends of Reddish South Station
- Pictures of Reddish South and Denton stations on Flickr