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Cleethorpes railway station is a terminal railway station serving the seaside town of Cleethorpes in North East Lincolnshire, England. The station is managed by TransPennine Express, with East Midlands Railway and Northern services also using the station.

Cleethorpes National Rail
Cleethorpes railway station MMB 10 185123 144006.jpg
Cleethorpes railway station in 2012
Local authorityNorth East Lincolnshire
Coordinates53°33′45″N 0°01′44″W / 53.5626°N 0.029°W / 53.5626; -0.029Coordinates: 53°33′45″N 0°01′44″W / 53.5626°N 0.029°W / 53.5626; -0.029
Grid referenceTA306090
Station codeCLE
Managed byTransPennine Express
Number of platforms3
DfT categoryD
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2013/14Increase 0.278 million
2014/15Decrease 0.270 million
2015/16Decrease 0.260 million
2016/17Increase 0.288 million
2017/18Decrease 0.285 million
Original companyManchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway
Pre-groupingGreat Central Railway
Post-groupingLondon and North Eastern Railway
6 April 1863opened
Listed status
Listed featureFormer Cleethorpes Railway Station Buildings (1884)
Listing gradeGrade II listed
Entry number1161596[1]
Added to list17 September 1980
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Cleethorpes from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.


The station opened on Easter Monday, 6 April 1863[2] when the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway extended the line from Grimsby into the town.

The station buildings were constructed in 1884[1] with refreshment rooms and a clocktower by John Mann Lockerbie and Arthur Wilkinson of Birmingham. Prince Albert Victor, Duke of Clarence and Avondale used the station on 2 July 1885 when he visited Cleethorpes to open the promenade and gardens facing the sea constructed by H.B James CE of Westminster for the railway company.[3]

The station layout was remodelled in 1889 to give six platforms and two carriage sidings extending in the direction of Grimsby. By 1891 the carriage sidings had been increased to six and extended to a new signal box at Suggitt's Lane. This layout also included a turntable to the rear of the signal box. A 1910 report into work carried out the previous year refers to new crossovers to enable trains to arrive and depart from any platform. The signal box by this time had 100 levers and was jointly the third largest on the Great Central system with Marylebone. The original GCR station buildings on platform one were replaced by the current single storey structure on 14 July 1961,[4] [5] but they still stand and are now used as train crew accommodation.

Until 1985 the station and surrounding area was still controlled by a mechanical signal box with full semaphore signalling, including double track throughout to Grimsby and beyond. However, a resignalling scheme for the entire area saw the line to Grimsby singled & the number of platforms reduced to four (numbers 1–3 and 5). Platform 5 was renumbered 4 and the Diesel Fuelling Road is what used to be platform 6. The signal box was closed & demolished and new colour light signals installed which were operated from a panel in the signal box at Pasture Street in Grimsby. In later works the platform surfaces have been rebuilt to modern specifications. Since January 2016, all signalling here is supervised from the Rail Operating Centre at York.

In the 1970s Cleethorpes had a twice daily return service to London King's Cross, typically hauled by a Class 55 Deltic.

Even after resignalling until the withdrawal of locomotive hauled cross-Pennine services and the through London King's Cross service, evening time at Cleethorpes was a very busy time with most arrivals requiring cleaning through the carriage washer, fuelling on the small fuel point and shunting into the various departure positions for the following morning. Locomotives returned to the diesel depot at Immingham for overnight servicing, and the High Speed Train from King's Cross was fuelled at the fuelling point at the rear of what used to be called Hawkeys Cafe via a siding that went round the back of the Wash Plant control building and joined up with the old Platform 6 road.

The station building on platform 1 was deemed unsafe and closed in 2001.[6] As of 2004 only platforms 2 and 3 remained in use, but as of 2007, patform 1 has reopened and all platforms have been fitted with new information displays. Other platforms at the station remain unused are in a state of neglect as sand has blown from the nearby beach onto the lines and formed drifts. Platform 1 is used by only TransPennine Express services to Manchester Airport, platform 2 for East Midlands Railway services to Barton-on-Humber, and platform 3 for peak hour services to/from Sheffield (including the Northern Saturdays-only service via Brigg and Retford).

About half a mile north are the station's cleaning facilities, which are used in the evenings by the units off the TransPennine Express Manchester trains. These first arrive on no.3 platform then go out to the washer and then on to the fuelling point. This happens every night with all four units that are stabled there.

First TransPennine Express built a small depot, to provide stabling, light maintenance and re-fuelling at Cleethorpes for its DMU fleet. The Class 153 units used by East Midlands Railway do not berth here overnight but work in and out either in service or empty from Lincoln.


The station is fully staffed, with the ticket office open 06:45-19:30 Mondays to Saturdays and 09:00-19:30 on Sundays. A self-service ticket machine is provided on the concourse for use outside these times and for collecting pre-paid tickets. There are toilets, a waiting room and refreshment facilities (a public house) also located on the concourse. Customer help points, timetable posters and CIS displays are located on both the concourse and each platform. All platforms have step-free access.[7]

The station has the PlusBus scheme where train and bus tickets can be bought together at a saving, it is in the same area as Grimsby Docks, New Clee and Grimsby stations.


  • TransPennine Express

TransPennine Express operate an hourly service to Manchester Airport via Sheffield and Doncaster along their South TransPennine route via the South Humberside Main Line, the Hope Valley Line and the Styal Line. A number of services to/from Sheffield also start or end here.[8]

  • East Midlands Railway

East Midlands Railway operate a very limited timetable at Cleethorpes with just one morning train from Cleethorpes to Newark North Gate and one evening train from there to Cleethorpes (which then returns to Lincoln) on Monday to Friday. They operate three services each way on Sundays to/from the station in the summer months to and from Nottingham, via Lincoln.[9]

  • Northern

Northern operate a two-hourly weekdays and Saturday service to Barton-on-Humber (with bus connections to Hull).[10]

On Saturdays Northern also operate three services to Sheffield via Brigg.

Proposed services and future changesEdit

In August 2007, after National Express East Coast was awarded the InterCity East Coast franchise, it proposed to start services between Lincoln and London King's Cross from December 2010 with one morning service and one evening service extending from Lincoln to Cleethorpes giving Cleethorpes a link to London and calling at Grimsby Town and Market Rasen. These services were to be operated using the Class 180s but was never introduced. These services were scrapped when East Coast took over the franchise.[11][12][13]

In 2008, Hull Trains applied for a new service from London to Harrogate as well as a Cleethorpes to London service via Lincoln and Spalding under the First Harrogate Trains brand. In 2009, it was rejected by the Office of Rail Regulations.[14][15][16]

Alliance Rail Holdings wanted to establish a rail link between Cleethorpes and London King's Cross, calling at Grimsby Town, Habrough, Scunthorpe and Doncaster. This service would have been introduced by December 2017 if the plans had been accepted by the Office of Rail & Road (ORR) and would have created the first direct link to London since 1986.[17] In May 2016 the ORR rejected the track access application.[18]

In August 2019, services between Cleethorpes and Barton-on-Humber transfer from Northern to East Midlands Railway, with Northern now only serving the station with Saturday only Sheffield to Cleethorpes via Brigg services.

In July 2017, Virgin Trains East Coast were in talks about extending the Lincoln to London service to Cleethorpes in the future providing a direct service to London for the first time in 25 years.[19]

In December 2017, Grand Central announced plans to bid for a service from London Kings Cross to Cleethorpes in early 2018 for a date of 2020. It would involve the existing Bradford Interchange service extended to 10 coaches from London to Doncaster then dividing with 5 coaches going to Cleethorpes via Scunthorpe, Barnetby, Habrough & Grimsby Town.[20] Grand Central plans 4 trains per day from London Kings Cross to Cleethorpes.[21]

Informed sources[who?] close to LNER reported in June 2019, that LNER would like to extend a number of trains from Lincoln Central to Cleethorpes in the future, but it would take time to do this as the route will need to be checked to see whether the Azuma trains are cleared to use the route.[22]



  1. ^ a b Historic England. "Former Cleethorpes Railway Station Buildings (1884) (1161596)". National Heritage List for England. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  2. ^ "On Easter Monday". Louth and North Lincolnshire Advertiser. England. 11 April 1863. Retrieved 3 March 2017 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  3. ^ "The Royal Visit to Grimsby and Cleethorpes". Louth and North Lincolnshire Chronicle. England. 3 July 1885. Retrieved 3 March 2017 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  4. ^ Body, p.46
  5. ^ "Reconstruction of Cleethorpes Station" Railway Gazette 18 August 1961 pages 192, 194
  6. ^ "Regional News" Rail issue 421 31 October 2001 page 22
  7. ^ Cleethorpes station facilities National Rail Enquiries; Retrieved 23 January 2017
  8. ^ GB National Rail Timetable December 2016, Table 29
  9. ^ GB National Rail Timetable December 2016, Table 27
  10. ^ Table 28 National Rail timetable, December 2016
  11. ^ "England - Lincolnshire - London route 'will boost county'". BBC News. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  12. ^ Bowker wins East Coast with £1.4bn premium Rail issue 573 29 August 2007 page 8
  13. ^ "Today's Railways Issue 86"
  14. ^ Hull Trains - Track Access Rights on the East coast Main Line Archived 25 June 2008 at the Wayback Machine Office of the Rail Regulator 19 March 2008
  15. ^ "Three companies want East Coast paths" Today's Railways issue 78 June 2008 page 6
  16. ^ "Hull Trains applies to serve Harrogate four times a day" Rail issue 594 18 June 2008 page 12
  17. ^ "£130m plan could see direct superfast trains to London from Cleethorpes and Grimsby" Archived 24 September 2015 at the Wayback Machine Grimsby Telegraph news article 28 February 2014; retrieved 11 May 2016
  18. ^ "ORR approves new East Coast rail services"[permanent dead link]RZD Partner Publishing; Retrieved 10 June 2016
  19. ^ Daly, Patrick (25 July 2017). "New hope of a direct train service between Cleethorpes and London". Grimsby Telegraph. Retrieved 11 August 2017.
  20. ^ "Rail firm reveals bid for direct Cleethorpes to London trains". Grimsby Telegraph. 27 December 2017. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  21. ^ "New rail charges could disrupt plan to run direct trains to Grimsby". Grimsby Telegraph. 12 July 2018. Retrieved 12 July 2018.
  22. ^ Harby, David (June 2019). "Weekday service returns to Gainsborough Central". Rail Lincs. No. 84. p. 2. ISSN 1350-0031. Retrieved 6 August 2019.


  • "Signal Box Diagrams No.14 – Cleethorpes" by Roger Milnes and John Bennett, Forward, the journal of the Great Central Railway Society, No. 83, August 1991. ISSN 0141-4488
  • Body, G. (1986), PSL Field Guides - Railways of the Eastern Region, Volume 1, Patrick Stephens Ltd, Wellingborough, ISBN 0-85059-712-9

External linksEdit

Preceding station   National Rail Following station
Grimsby Town   TransPennine Express
South TransPennine
Grimsby Town   East Midlands Railway
Newark to Cleethorpes Line
Grimsby Town   Northern
Sheffield - Cleethorpes
(Saturdays only)
New Clee   Northern
Barton line