Tønsberg Station

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Tønsberg Station
A Class 70 train at the station
LocationTown of TønsbergTønsberg
Coordinates59°16′19″N 10°24′34″E / 59.27194°N 10.40944°E / 59.27194; 10.40944Coordinates: 59°16′19″N 10°24′34″E / 59.27194°N 10.40944°E / 59.27194; 10.40944
Elevation14.5 m (48 ft)
Operated byNorwegian State Railways
Line(s)Vestfold Line
Distance115.68 km (71.88 mi)
ConnectionsBus: Vestviken Kollektivtrafikk

Tønsberg Station on the Vestfold Line, is the main railway station in the town of Tønsberg in Vestfold, Norway. The station is located in the downtown area, to the east of the hill Slottsfjellet. It is located at an altitude of 14.5 meters (48 ft) above mean sea level, and is 115.68 kilometers (71.88 mi) from Oslo Central Station. The current station is from 1915.


The first station at Knapløkken was a railway station built by the private Tønsberg–Eidsfoss Line. It received a station building of the smallest type used on the line, with only two rooms, and consisted further of a passing loop and an outhouse. The station had an extensive track arrangement with seven tracks and place for 203 freight cars.[1] The station opened on 18 October 1901.[2]

During the planning of TEB there was discussion about changing the state railway's line through town and building a new station. This would have allowed NSB trains avoid having to back from Jarlsberg Points. TEB therefore chose to build their station at Knapløkken. Thus Tønsberg was served by four stations. NSB therefore decided that it would build the Vestfold Line through Tønsberg in a loop, build a new, common station for TEB and NSB, and align the Vestfold Line out of Tønsberg next to TEB.[3] As TEB's station was far too small to handle NSB's traffic, an all-new station was built at Knapløkken.[4] The new line was taken into use on 1 October 1915 and the new station was completed in 1916.[5]

At the time of the opening the station had 1 hectare (2.5 acres) of land, which was rented for 1 øre per square meter to the station employees. At the time of the opening the station had a station master, three clerks, six telegraphists, two foremen, a switcher, nine servicemen and an apprentice.[4] On 11 May 1934, Norsk Spisevognselskap took over operation of the station restaurant. In 1948, a separate building for the restaurant was opened.[6]

When the Vestfold Line first opened in 1881, Tønsberg was accessed to by means of a branch line running in a 221 meters (725 ft) long tunnel through Slottsfjell. At that time the Tønsberg station was a terminal station and trains had to reverse direction in Tønsberg, usually the cars were pushed into the station. This was a cumbersome operation, and in 1915 the current layout was opened. Now trains from the east run in a loop around Tønsberg city before entering the station and no reversing is necessary.[7]

The loop does take up space however, and in 2002 the Tønsberg city council passed a resolution to replace the loop with a single line, reintroducing the simple cul-de-sac station. The Norwegian National Rail Administration, who owns the railway, protested, pointing out that turning trains around would hold it up for ten minutes.[8] There have been calls to continue the discussion.[9]


Tønsberg was built as a first-class station, the station's upper story originally serving as a residence for the station master and offices which hosted TEB's administration. The ground floor consisted of a waiting room, ticket sales, office for the station master, a telegraphy room, a cargo handling room, all with central heating. The station building was originally supplemented with a cargo building. The station had four main tracks, three spurs and a branch to the port, which was part of TEB.[4]


  1. ^ Jakobsen (1993): 118
  2. ^ Jakobsen (1993): 99
  3. ^ Aspenberg (1994): 148
  4. ^ a b c Jakobsen (1996): 38
  5. ^ Aspenberg (1994): 150
  6. ^ Just (1949): 71
  7. ^ Sigurd H. Unneberg, Sem og Slagen, en bygdebok Bind 2, Kulturhistorie, del 2 . Tønsberg: Høgskolen i Vestfold, 2001. Relevant chapter is online here Archived 2016-03-03 at the Wayback Machine (in Norwegian)
  8. ^ "Vil beholde jernbanesløyfe (Want to keep the railway loop)" (in Norwegian). NRK Østafjells. 2002-08-29.
  9. ^ Vil ha omkamp om jernbane (Wants a rematch over the railway) Tønsbergs Blad, November 17, 2005 (in Norwegian)


  • Aspenberg, Nils Carl (1994). Glemte spor: boken om sidebanenes tragiske liv (in Norwegian). Oslo: Baneforlaget. ISBN 82-91448-00-0.
  • Bjerke, Thor (1994). Banedata '94 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Norsk Jernbaneklubb. ISBN 82-90286-15-5.
  • Jakobsen, Asbjørn N. (1993). Små-tog på spinkle skinner gjennem det indre av Vestfold (in Norwegian). Galleberg: A.N. Jakobsen. ISBN 8299291402.
  • Jakobsen, Asbjørn N. (1996). Jernbaneminner fra Vestfold (in Norwegian). Galleberg: A.N. Jakobsen.
  • Just, Carl (1949). A/S Norsk Spisevognselskap 1919–1949 (in Norwegian). Oslo: Norsk Spisevognselskap. OCLC 40310643.

External links[edit]

Preceding station Line Following station
Stokke Vestfold Line Skoppum
Preceding station Regional trains Following station
Stokke R11 SkienOslo SEidsvoll   Skoppum