Stoke-on-Trent railway station
|Local authority||City of Stoke on Trent|
|Managed by||Virgin Trains|
|Number of platforms||3|
|Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
|Annual rail passenger usage*|
|Key dates||Opened 9 October 1848|
|National Rail – UK railway stations|
|* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Stoke-on-Trent from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.|
Stoke-on-Trent railway station is a mainline railway station serving the city of Stoke-on-Trent. It lies on the Stafford to Manchester branch of the West Coast Main Line. The station also provides an interchange between various local services running through Cheshire, Staffordshire and Derbyshire.
The Victorian station buildings were opened on 9 October 1848. The other buildings located in Winton Square, including the North Stafford Hotel, were opened in June 1849. All these buildings were constructed by John Jay to the design of H.A. Hunt of London, using an architectural style referred to as "robust Jacobean manor-house". The station was built by the North Staffordshire Railway Company (NSR) and, until the amalgamation of 1923, housed the company's boardroom and its principal offices.
Stoke-on-Trent has always been and still is the hub of North Staffordshire's passenger train service. The station also used to have links to Leek (the Biddulph Valley Line via Fenton Manor & Endon), Cheadle, to Market Drayton via Newcastle-under-Lyme & Silverdale (Staffordshire) and was the southern terminus of the Potteries Loop Line. All of these routes closed to passenger traffic in the 1950s & 1960s, though the line to Leek remained in use for sand & stone traffic to Caldon Low & Oakamoor quarries until the mid-1980s.
The station is situated in Winton Square, which is described as Britain's only piece of major town planning undertaken by a railway company specifically to offset a station building. The station is a grade II* listed building, one of four listed buildings in the square—the North Stafford Hotel, directly opposite the station, is also grade II* listed while a statue of Josiah Wedgwood and a row of railway cottages either side of the square are grade II listed.
The building is constructed of dark red brick with black diapering and stone dressings. It has three Dutch-style gables; the central gable has a prominent first-floor bay window, which is decoratively mullioned, above which is a parapet bearing the NSR's coat of arms. Behind the bay window is the boardroom of the NSR, while the remainder of the upper floor was designed as office space. Either side of the bay window is a terrace, which runs across the top of an arcade of Tuscan columns flanking seven arches, each of which contains a fanlight.
The station today
Stoke-on-Trent Station is managed by Virgin Trains. It has three passenger platforms and until recently had one central through line without a platform, which has now been removed. The entrance to the station is from Winton Square, opposite the North Stafford Hotel, into a large modern booking hall with an enquiry office, Fast Ticket machines, a HSBC cashpoint and level access to platform 1 from which southbound and eastbound trains normally depart. On this platform are the main buildings, refreshment room and bar which sells cigarettes, newspapers and a selection of magazines, free CCTV-covered cycle-locking racks, a post box, free newly refurbished toilets for both ladies and gentlemen, a refurbished waiting room, a first class lounge with Wi-Fi and offices for the British Transport Police. In April 2011, a series of FalcoLevel two-tier cycle parking systems were installed providing secure accommodation for up to 66 bikes.
There is both a tiled passenger subway and a passenger operated lift connecting platform 1 with platforms 2 and 3. Northbound trains usually depart from platform 2, which has a newly refurbished waiting room, ladies' and gentlemen's toilets. Platform 3 is a short bay platform used by Northern's regional trains to Manchester Piccadilly which depart at xx:58 and call at all stations excluding Longport.
The station building retains much of its mid-Victorian character, including a classic glazed roof, built in 1893, that spans the platforms. A war memorial, with brass nameplates naming the employees of the North Staffordshire Railway who fell during World War I, discreetly flanks the entrance to platform 1. The station underwent restoration work in the 1990s, having fallen into disrepair.
In May 2009 the main platform (Platform 1) was lengthened to accommodate longer trains and the middle line was removed with Platform 2 lengthened during 2011.
On 14 September 2015, the station began its new development project. Platform 1 saw the introduction of automatic ticket barriers in December 2015 along with new Fast Ticket Machines. The historic entrance onto Platform 2 will be re-opened, it is currently under construction and will open in February 2016 with new automatic ticket barriers and Fast Ticket machines. Alongside this, a new retail space will open on Platform 2. The Platform 2 waiting room was also refreshed and redeveloped and opened in January 2016.
The station is located on both the Stafford to Manchester Line and the Crewe to Derby Line; it is also served by trains between London Euston and Manchester Piccadilly via the Trent Valley Line. Services are operated by CrossCountry, East Midlands Trains, London Midland, Northern and Virgin Trains.
In April 2006, Network Rail organised its maintenance and train control operations into "26 Routes". The main line through Stoke-on-Trent forms part of Route 18 (The West Coast Mainline). The line from Derby to the junction just south of Stoke-on-Trent station forms part of Route 19 (The Midland Main Line and East Midlands).
Major destinations served by 'through' (i.e.: direct service) express trains include: to the south London, Birmingham, Oxford, Reading, Southampton, Bournemouth; and to the north Manchester Piccadilly.
Destinations served by local and regional trains include: to the north Crewe and Macclesfield; to the east Uttoxeter and Derby; and to the south Stafford and Wolverhampton. There is now an hourly semi-fast direct service from Crewe to London Euston via Stone, which was introduced in December 2008.
The nearby Etruria railway station, one mile to the north, was closed to passengers in 2005. The small village stations of Wedgwood and Barlaston, a few miles to the south, are permanently served by BakerBus replacement bus service X1 only, the local stopping service to Stafford having been withdrawn in 2003 when the line was temporarily closed for upgrading and was never reinstated afterward.
Freight trains on Mondays, carrying Cornish clay for use in Stoke's pottery industry, pass through the station. These trains supply an industrial spur line at Cliffe Vale, just north of Stoke station.
Freight trains on Fridays also take various freight wagons from Arpley Sidings outside Warrington, to Axiom Rail (Stoke Marcroft). They head here for general repairs, maintenance and sometimes conversions. The return up to Arpley Sidings Warrington with completed wagons happens normally on the same day.
The station surroundings
The original, now disused, goods yard lies behind the northbound platforms. There were various proposals for its use, including an "iconic" conference centre. However, in April 2007, Virgin announced that 264 new car parking spaces would be made available at Stoke-on-Trent station by January 2009, adding to the two existing small car parks. A new access road, junction and traffic lights were constructed to serve the goods yard road entrance, when the A500 upgrade was completed in 2006/7. The new car park opened October 2009.
Winton Chambers (a self-contained section of the main station building, including the entire upper floor) is currently leased to Staffordshire University, which has its main Stoke-on-Trent campuses in College Road off Station Road and in Leek Road nearby. The University also leases Nos. 1, 2 & 3 Winton Square and Nos. 4 & 5 Winton Square, which with the North Stafford Hotel and the current station comprise the original 1848 station complex. There is also a Subway outlet situated to the right of the North Stafford Hotel as you look at it.
Directly opposite the station entrance is the statue of potter Josiah Wedgwood (1730–1795), sculpted by Edward Davis and erected in 1863. Wedgwood holds in his hand an exact copy of the Portland Vase, the reproduction of which showed the British that they could at last surpass the achievements of the finest craftsmen of the Roman Empire. The statue stands in front of the North Stafford Hotel.
Also directly opposite the station is the British Pottery Manufacturer's Federation Club ("The Potter's Club") which is a large private member's club situated in Federation House, and which is run for the benefit of the many local pottery manufacturers. It was established in 1951, and still operates.
Also the main Royal Mail for Stoke-on-Trent is located opposite the station next to the North Stafford Hotel, until the early 90s mail arrived from all over the county into Stoke Station and then transferred across the road to the sorting office.
Local bus services stop at two bus stop on the main road, Station Road. Companies the provide services from the station are First Potteries, D&G Buses and Arriva serving Hanley, Stoke and Newcastle town centres and also Keele University. Most services connect, at Hanley bus station with the services covering most of North Staffordshire.
The university has expanded rapidly in recent years and a large area to north-east of Stoke-on-Trent station is now seen as a developing University Quarter, and now absorbs the relocated sixth-form college previously sited a mile or so to the south at Fenton, and the main further education college just to the north, and possibly also the Burslem campus of Stoke-on-Trent College. This £150m "quarter" regeneration will also entail investment in the immediate surroundings of the railway station.
- Nikolaus Pevsner; The Buildings of England - Staffordshire, Penguin Books Ltd, 1974. ISBN 0-14-071046-9 (page 262)
- Biddle, Gordon. Britain's Historic Railway Buildings: A Gazetteer of Structures (Second ed.). Hersham, Surrey: Ian Allan Publishing. pp. 367–368. ISBN 9780711034914.
- "NORTH STAFFORDSHIRE HOTEL". The National Heritage List for England. English Heritage. Retrieved 4 October 2014.
- "STOKE ON TRENT STATION". The National Heritage List for England. English Heritage. Retrieved 7 October 2014.
- GB eNRT December 2015 Edition, Tables 51, 65 & 84
- GB eNRT December 2015 Edition, Table 67
- Virgin Trains
- Staffordshire University
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Stoke-on-Trent railway station.|
- Train times and station information for Stoke-on-Trent railway station from National Rail
- The North Staffordshire Railway Study Group
- Staffordshire University campus map showing proximity to the station.
- Historic England. "Details from image database (384528)". Images of England.
|Preceding station||National Rail||Following station|
|East Midlands Trains|
London - Crewe
Stoke - Manchester
Line open, station closed
|North Staffordshire Railway||
Line open, station closed
|North Staffordshire Railway||
Line open, station closed
|North Staffordshire Railway
Sandbach to Stoke Line
|Terminus||North Staffordshire Railway||
Line open, station closed
Line and station closed
|North Staffordshire Railway||Terminus|