Warrington Bank Quay railway station

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Warrington Bank Quay National Rail
Platform 2, Warrington Bank Quay railway station (geograph 4019990).jpg
Warrington Bank Quay Station in 2014
Place Warrington
Local authority Borough of Warrington
Grid reference SJ599878
Station code WBQ
Managed by Virgin Trains
Number of platforms 4
DfT category B
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2013/14 Increase 1.012 million
2014/15 Increase 1.081 million
2015/16 Increase 1.110 million
2016/17 Increase 1.364 million
2017/18 Increase 1.390 million
Key dates Opened 1868 (1868)
Original company London & North Western Railway
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Warrington Bank Quay from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
170433 at Edinburgh Waverley.JPG UK Railways portal

Warrington Bank Quay railway station is one of two railway stations serving the town centre of Warrington in Cheshire, England. Warrington Bank Quay is a north-south oriented mainline station on one side of the main shopping area, with the west-east oriented Warrington Central on the other side to the north west operating a more frequent service to the neighbouring cities of Liverpool and Manchester. A bus shuttle service operated every 20 minutes from Monday to Friday daytime between the two stations and the Centre Park business park.[1] The station is directly on the West Coast Main Line.


The station consists of two island platforms. The easternmost retains the 19th century buildings, with the western island's buildings dating from the 1950s. Passengers enter the station at street level through a functional modern entrance containing an information office and ticket office, and proceed through a subway, reaching the elevated platforms by stairs or a lift. There is a buffet on the eastern platform.

Platform 1 serves arrivals and departures to Liverpool Lime Street with this service terminating at the platform, and occasionally for North Wales services. Platform 2 is generally used for North Wales services, and southbound intercity services to Birmingham New Street and London Euston. Platform 3 serves northbound intercity trains to Edinburgh and Glasgow Central. Platform 4 for services from North Wales to Manchester. The platforms are not bidirectional, except that the slow line between the station and Winwick Junction, some 2 12 miles (4 km) to the north. This allows northbound departures from platform 1. The present platform 4 was numbered 5 for many years, because there was to be a north-facing bay platform in the west island which was numbered 4, but this saw no passenger use after electrification in 1972 being removed later.

The station's best known landmark is the huge Unilever detergent manufacturing plant which stands overlooking the site.[2]

The station suffered from years of neglect and, because of this, Virgin Trains announced improvements to the station. In 2009, an extension to the existing car park and a new taxi rank were built, along with improvements to the platforms and a new ticket office and travel centre.[3][4] The new entrance hall is now complete, with a ticket office and a newsagents. The buffet on the London bound platforms has been modernised, however a first class lounge is yet to materialise.

Low Level

Until 1965 the west-east oriented platforms, 6 and 7, (53°23′09″N 2°36′08″W / 53.3857°N 2.6023°W / 53.3857; -2.6023 (Bank Quay Low Level railway station)) were situated on what had been the St Helens Railway lines which pass beneath the station and the north-south West Coast Main Line. The West Coast Main Line was elevated to pass over the west to east line when the current station was opened in 1868). Although it was not the official title, this part of the station was referred to as Bank Quay Low Level.[5] The line remains for freight use only.[6]


The station lies on the West Coast Main Line, operated by Virgin Trains, with regular services to London, Birmingham, and Scotland.[7] A regular regional express service operates between Manchester, Chester and North Wales operated by Transport for Wales.[8] There are also local electric services to Liverpool operated by Northern and one early morning service per day to Ellesmere Port via Helsby with returning morning and afternoon services.[9]

A Virgin Pendolino, at platform 2, waiting to head south

Normal weekday service consists of:

London Euston only.
Crewe, Wolverhampton, Sandwell & Dudley, Birmingham New Street, Birmingham International, Coventry, Milton Keynes Central and London Euston.
A Virgin Voyager, at platform 3, with a service to Scotland
Wigan North Western, Preston, Lancaster, Oxenholme, Penrith, Carlisle and Glasgow Central.
Additional peak services operate between Birmingham New Street-Glasgow Central/Edinburgh/Preston/Carlisle/Lancaster.
  • Two-hourly to Edinburgh Waverley, operated by either a Virgin Pendolino or a Virgin Voyager, calling at:
Wigan North Western, Preston, Lancaster, Oxenholme, Penrith, Carlisle, Haymarket and Edinburgh Waverley.
  • Two-hourly to Glasgow Central, operated by either a Virgin Pendolino or a Virgin Voyager, calling at:
Wigan North Western, Preston, Lancaster, Oxenholme, Penrith, Carlisle and Glasgow Central.
An Arriva Trains Wales Class 175, at platform 3, with the service to Manchester Piccadilly
Earlestown, Newton-le-Willows, Manchester Oxford Road and Manchester Piccadilly.
  • Hourly to Llandudno, operated by Transport for Wales, calling at:
Runcorn East, Frodsham, Helsby, Chester, Shotton, Flint, Prestatyn, Rhyl, Abergele & Pensarn, Colwyn Bay, Llandudno Junction, Deganwy and Llandudno.
Earlestown, St Helens Junction, Lea Green, Rainhill, Whiston, Huyton, Roby, Broad Green, Wavertree Tech Park, Edge Hill and Liverpool Lime Street.
  • Hourly operated by Northern terminates here from Liverpool Lime Street.

There is also a limited service:

  • To Ellesmere Port operated by Northern calling at:
Helsby, Ince & Elton, Stanlow & Thornton and Ellesmere Port.

Future Services

The new Arriva-operated Northern Rail franchise will eventually provide additional services from here to Chester, Manchester Victoria and Leeds via the Calder Valley line as part of its Northern Connect network.[10]


Kissing ban

The station received media coverage in February 2009 due to a sign recently erected prohibiting kissing from its drop-off point. The reason stated is to avoid queues as the station becomes busier. Colin Daniels, chief executive of the Warrington Chamber of Commerce originally suggested the idea light-heartedly, but Virgin Trains have included it as part of their regeneration of the station.[11] The signs were removed three weeks later and sold to raise money for Comic Relief[12] with Virgin spokesman Ken Gibbs admitting that the idea was just a bit of fun.[13]


  1. ^ http://www.networkwarrington.com
  2. ^ David Dixon. "Bank Quay Station, Warrington". www.geograph.org.uk. Retrieved 2018-07-02.
  3. ^ "Warrington Guardian article". Warrington Guardian. 2006. Retrieved 2008-03-01.
  4. ^ "Improvements arriving soon at Warrington Bank Quay station". Virgin Trains. 2007. Retrieved 2008-03-29.
  5. ^ Fields, Gilbert & Knight 1980, Photo 251
  6. ^ "Warrington Bank Quay(Low Level)". Disused Stations. 2006. Retrieved 2009-01-02.
  7. ^ Table 6 National Rail timetable, May 20175
  8. ^ GB eNRT May 2017 Edition, Table 81
  9. ^ GB eNRT MAy 2017 Edition, Tables 90 & 109
  10. ^ Northern Franchise Improvements - DfT
  11. ^ Stokes, Paul (2009-02-16). "Kissing banned at railway station". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 2010-05-27.
  12. ^ "Comic Relief: Warrington station kissing ban takes a Comic turn". Liverpool Daily Post. 2009-03-10. Retrieved 2012-04-18.
  13. ^ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iFIaedny3Vs


  • Fields, N; Gilbert, A C; Knight, N R (1980). Liverpool to Manchester into the Second Century. Manchester Transport Museum Society. ISBN 0 900857 19 6.

Further reading

External links

  • Train times and station information for Warrington Bank Quay railway station from National Rail
Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Runcorn East   Transport for Wales
Chester to Manchester Line
Runcorn East   Northern
Ellesmere Port to Warrington Line
Mondays-Saturdays only
Terminus   Northern
Liverpool to Manchester Line
Wigan North Western   Virgin Trains
West Coast Main Line
  London Euston
  Future services  
Chester   Northern Connect
Chester - Leeds
  Manchester Victoria
Liverpool Lime Street   TBA
Northern Powerhouse Rail
  Manchester Interchange
Liverpool Lime Street   TBA
Northern Powerhouse Rail
  Historical railways  
Daresbury   Birkenhead Joint Railway   Terminus
Moore   London and North Western Railway
Grand Junction Railway
Disused railways
Sankey Bridges   St Helens Railway   Warrington Arpley

Coordinates: 53°23′10″N 2°36′11″W / 53.386°N 2.603°W / 53.386; -2.603

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