Witham railway station

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For the station in Somerset, see Witham (Somerset) railway station.
Witham National Rail
Witham - Greater Anglia 321447.JPG
Place Witham
Local authority District of Braintree
Coordinates 51°48′22″N 0°38′21″E / 51.806°N 0.6391°E / 51.806; 0.6391Coordinates: 51°48′22″N 0°38′21″E / 51.806°N 0.6391°E / 51.806; 0.6391
Grid reference TL820152
Station code WTM
Managed by Abellio Greater Anglia
Number of platforms 4
DfT category C2
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2004/05 2.261 million
2005/06 Increase 2.307 million
2006/07 Increase 2.343 million
2007/08 Decrease 2.341 million
2008/09 Decrease 2.277 million
2009/10 Decrease 2.077 million
2010/11 Increase 2.159 million
2011/12 Increase 2.252 million
2012/13 Decrease 2.245 million
2013/14 Increase 2.350 million
Original company Eastern Counties Railway
Pre-grouping Great Eastern Railway
Post-grouping London and North Eastern Railway
29 March 1843 Station opened
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Witham from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
UK Railways portal

Witham railway station is a railway station serving the town of Witham in Essex, England. The station is located on the Great Eastern Main Line and is also the junction of the Witham-Braintree line. The branch junction faces west (towards London), thus permitting through running between London and Braintree.

The station is located approximately half a mile to the north of the town centre.

The station is served by Abellio Greater Anglia. All services calling here are operated by Class 321 and Class 360 electrical multiple units for Braintree, Colchester Town, Clacton and Ipswich services.

Station layout[edit]

Platform 1 is disused except for peak hour services to and from London starting or terminating at the station, a few through trains to London use this platform as well. (This platform used to be used by trains serving the now dismantled branch line to Maldon.) Platform 2 is for services to London. Platform 3 is for services to Colchester and beyond. Platform 4 is the Braintree platform, where services start from or terminate here on Sundays or run to and from London on Monday to Saturday. This platform is also used by through stopping services during peak times to allow non-stopping trains to pass through the station unhindered. Some evening peak services terminating at Witham also use this platform. Before the lengthening of the Braintree line platforms through trains to Braintree would divide here with only the front four coaches going forward

The station car park is situated next to the station. To access the car park from the station passengers used to have to exit onto the street and take a substantial walk to the road bridge across the tracks situated just past the western end of the station, over the bridge and then down a residential road the other side of the tracks. Station users have been campaigning for a remedy to this issue for many years. In November 2001 funding was announced to build a direct footbridge from the station to the car park,[1] but this was subsequently withdrawn indefinitely in financial cutbacks following the collapse of Railtrack. Reports of a new funding package for a footbridge emerged in 2008.[2]

Work took place between January and August 2011 which includes a new entrance at the station to provide access to and from the adjacent car park. This work is now completed and the footbridge opened on 31 August 2011. The improvements also see new disabled parking facilities, a new push button customer help and information point and new sheltered cycle storage. The station has also recently undergone fence refurbishment, with CCTV extending from the entrance as far as the bus stop. For crime reporting purposes, bicycles attached to the fence should be reported to Essex police, whereas bicycles stolen from the sheltered cycle storage should be reported to the BTP.

The 1897 survey of the station shows a small system of sidings on the down side at the London end and also a siding with a turntable at the country end off the Braintree branch. On the up side there were sidings serving an auction mart and cattle pens at the London end; and the Maltings and a coal yard at the country end accessed from both the main line and the Maldon branch. The Maldon branch had at an earlier date been served by a triangular junction which facilitated direct running from Colchester but it is shown as disconnected on the 1897 survey.[3]

Train services[edit]

The typical off-peak service is of four trains per hour to London Liverpool Street, and one per hour to each of Ipswich, Colchester Town, Clacton-on-Sea and Braintree. The services are operated by Abellio Greater Anglia.

Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Abellio Greater Anglia
Terminus Abellio Greater Anglia
Historical railways
Anglia Railways
Disused railways
Terminus Great Eastern Railway
Line and station closed


Up Cromer – London express in 1951

The section of the Eastern Counties Railway (ECR) between Brentwood and Colchester was opened on 29 March 1843,[4] and Witham station opened the same day.[5] The station became a junction five years later with the opening of the Maldon, Witham and Braintree Railway (MW&B) to goods trains on 15 August 1848; passenger services began on 2 October 1848.[6][7] The MW&B was absorbed by the ECR, which itself amalgamated with other companies in 1862 to form the Great Eastern Railway.[8]

Accident: 1 September 1905[edit]

Main article: Witham rail crash

Witham railway station was the scene of a serious accident on Saturday 1 September 1905. The 09:27 London Liverpool Street to Cromer 14 carriage express derailed whilst travelling through the station at speed. 10 passengers and a Luggage Porter were killed when several of the carriages somersaulted onto the platforms causing considerable damage to the rolling stock and the station. 71 passengers were seriously injured.[9] This remains to this day the worst single loss of life in a railway accident in Essex.


  1. ^ "Building A Better Railway: SRA Provides £455,000 for Witham Interchange". Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  2. ^ "Footbridge hopes high". Retrieved 2008-07-15. 
  3. ^ Mitchell, Victor E. (April 2011). Eastern Main Lines - Shenfield to Ipswich. Midhurst: Middleton Press. Plan VI. ISBN 978 1 906008 96 3. 
  4. ^ Allen, Cecil J. (1956) [1955]. The Great Eastern Railway (2nd ed.). Hampton Court: Ian Allan. pp. 8,214. 
  5. ^ Butt, R.V.J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations. Yeovil: Patrick Stephens Ltd. p. 252. ISBN 1-85260-508-1. R508. 
  6. ^ Allen 1956, p. 215
  7. ^ Awdry, Christopher (1990). Encyclopaedia of British Railway Companies. London: Guild Publishing. p. 147. CN 8983. 
  8. ^ Allen 1956, p. 46
  9. ^ http://www.railwaysarchive.co.uk/eventsummary.php?eventID=72