Reddish South railway station

Reddish South railway station is a stop on the Stockport–Stalybridge Line in Reddish, Stockport, England. The station, used by only 26 passengers in 2013/14, is one of the quietest on the UK rail network. From May 1992 until May 2018, it was served by only one Parliamentary service per week, the minimum statutory service level required to avoid starting formal closure proceedings. Despite the low passenger numbers, the line itself is used regularly for freight traffic and empty stock transfers.

Reddish South National Rail
Local authorityStockport
Coordinates53°26′10″N 2°09′29″W / 53.4361°N 2.1580°W / 53.4361; -2.1580Coordinates: 53°26′10″N 2°09′29″W / 53.4361°N 2.1580°W / 53.4361; -2.1580
Grid referenceSJ895932
Station codeRDS
Managed byNorthern
Number of platforms1
DfT categoryF2
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2014/15Increase 54
2015/16Decrease 38
2016/17Increase 94
2017/18Increase 104
2018/19Decrease 60
Passenger Transport Executive
PTETransport for Greater Manchester
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Reddish South from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.


Reddish South was opened when the line between Stockport and Guide Bridge was completed by the Manchester and Birmingham Railway in October 1845. It was taken over by the London and North Western Railway (LNWR) following a merger of the two companies in 1846. The 19th century civil engineering firm, John Brogden and Sons, was the contractor.[1]

The station, which consisted of two island platforms, also had a signal box, goods sidings and engine shed. For more than fifty years, it catered for the LNWR mainline services between Manchester and Leeds. All regular Monday to Saturday hourly services would stop at the station. However, express traffic was drastically reduced when services were redirected to the newly opened Manchester Piccadilly in May 1899.[2]

With the redirection of the long-distance express services, the station became a scheduled stop for local traffic. Although the Stockport–Stalybridge Line escaped the 1960s Beeching cuts when large numbers of cross-country branch lines were closed for being uneconomical, the station and line were gradually rundown by British Rail over the next couple of decades. The remaining original station building on one of the island platforms was demolished and the sidings and engine shed removed. After the line was eventually reduced to a single track, the second island platform was abandoned. One of the track beds was sold off and the other was filled in. The station became a request stop.

For many years, the only service was the 0922 Fridays-only parliamentary train from Stockport to Stalybridge. It stopped at Reddish South at 0926 before continuing to Stalybridge via Denton and Guide Bridge.[3]

In September 2006 open-access operator Grand Central proposed to run services from Bradford Interchange via Huddersfield and the West Coast Main Line to London Euston. This service would have gone via Stalybridge and Guide Bridge to Stockport through Reddish South.[4][5] However, the proposal was dropped after Virgin Trains cited its protection clause preventing any other operators from using the West Coast Main Line.[6]

In May 2007 Network Rail proposed in its North West Route Utilisation Strategy that both Reddish South and Denton stations should be closed while the line remain open for freight and diverted passenger workings.[7] This prompted a campaign to start asking for regular service from Stockport to Manchester Victoria via Reddish South and Denton.[8]

On 20 May 2018, Northern replaced the Friday service with one return service on Saturday mornings.[9][10] From the start of the December timetable, trains operate as the 10:27 to Stockport and the 10:49 to Stalybridge.

In January 2020 the station was named as the UK's third quietest, with just 60 entries and exits between 1st April 2018 and 31st March 2019.[11]

Quietest station in the UKEdit

Local campaigners have installed artwork, a flower-bed and a fence alongside the platform

Between April 2013 and March 2014, Reddish South was the third-least-used station in Great Britain, after Teesside Airport railway station and Shippea Hill railway station with only 26 recorded passengers.[12] In 2015, passenger figures from the Office for Rail and Road showed that Reddish South had become Britain's fourth-quietest railway station.[13]

In comparison, neighbouring stations of Reddish North, Heaton Chapel and Brinnington all have regular services.

Preceding station     National Rail   Following station
Saturday only
  Historical railways  
Heaton Norris   London & North Western Railway
Manchester and Birmingham Railway


  1. ^ Directors’ Minutes: Manchester and Birmingham Railway Co, Public Record Office, RAIL 454/3 and the contract 454/11
  2. ^ "Point of No Return: All Aboard the Ghost Train". 7 March 2007. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
  3. ^ Table 78A (Network Rail). GB eNRT. May 2016.
  4. ^ "New rail routes planned". The Telegraph. 20 September 2006.
  5. ^ "Off to London from Huddersfield station". The Huddersfield Daily Examiner. 21 September 2006.
  6. ^ "Grand Northern drops Bradford-Euston bid". Rail Magazine. No. 602. 8 October 2008. p. 18.
  7. ^ "North West Route Utilisation Strategy". May 2007.
  8. ^ MacEinri, N (13 July 2014). "Stockport to Victoria via Reddish South and Denton". Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  9. ^ "2J44 0846 Stalybridge to Stockport". 26 May 2018. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  10. ^ "2J45 0945 Stockport to Stalybridge". 26 May 2018. Retrieved 7 May 2018.
  11. ^ "The quietest and busiest train stations in Britain". The Independent. 14 January 2020. Retrieved 14 January 2020.
  12. ^ "Estimates of station usage". Office of Rail and Road. Retrieved 7 December 2017.
  13. ^ "Revealed: Britain's busiest and quietest stations". BBC News. Retrieved 16 December 2015.

External linksEdit