Sellafield railway station

Sellafield is a railway station on the Cumbrian Coast Line, which runs between Carlisle and Barrow-in-Furness. The station, situated 35 miles (56 km) north-west of Barrow-in-Furness, serves Sellafield in Cumbria. It is owned by Network Rail and managed by Northern Trains.

Sellafield
National Rail
Sellafield Railway Station (geograph 5868752).jpg
General information
LocationSellafield, Copeland
England
Coordinates54°25′00″N 3°30′38″W / 54.4166451°N 3.5104538°W / 54.4166451; -3.5104538Coordinates: 54°25′00″N 3°30′38″W / 54.4166451°N 3.5104538°W / 54.4166451; -3.5104538
Grid referenceNY020034
Owned byNetwork Rail
Managed byNorthern Trains
Platforms2
Tracks2
Other information
Station codeSEL
ClassificationDfT category F1
History
Original companyWhitehaven and Furness Junction Railway
Pre-groupingFurness Railway
Post-groupingLondon, Midland and Scottish Railway
British Rail (London Midland Region)
Key dates
21 July 1849Opened as Sellafield and Calderbridge
1955Renamed Sellafield
Passengers
2016/17Decrease 0.200 million
2017/18Increase 0.206 million
2018/19Increase 0.242 million
 Interchange 68
2019/20Increase 0.260 million
 Interchange Increase 120
2020/21Decrease 62,524
 Interchange Decrease 41
Location
Sellafield is located in the Borough of Copeland
Sellafield
Sellafield
Location in Copeland, Cumbria
Sellafield is located in Cumbria
Sellafield
Sellafield
Location in Cumbria, England
Notes
Passenger statistics from the Office of Rail and Road

The station, which dates from 1850, is a busy freight location, because much of the nuclear waste for Sellafield's THORP nuclear fuel reprocessing plant is carried there by train from the docks in Barrow-in-Furness, or from rail-connected nuclear power stations elsewhere in the UK. The facility also generates significant commuter traffic for the railway, with workers travelling by train from nearby towns and villages.[1]

The station is at the end of the single-line section from Whitehaven, which is operated using the electric key token system. From there, the line south towards Ravenglass and Barrow is double track, except for the final section between Park South Junction (south of Askam) and Barrow, which was reduced to a single track in the late 1980s.

The station configuration is unusual in that the southbound ('up' line) is bi-directional through the station and has platform faces on both sides.[2] However, only the eastern platform face is used, the other side being fenced off. This allows trains from the south to terminate and turn back without having to enter the single-line section to St Bees. The signal box controlling the layout is located at the north end of the station, whilst the exchange sidings for the plant, and the loco depot used by Direct Rail Services freight trains, are to the south. There are two water cranes at the station, one at each end.[3]

The station used to be the southern terminus of the former Whitehaven, Cleator and Egremont Railway line from Egremont, from August 1869 until the line's closure in March 1964.[4]

A 1903 Railway Clearing House Junction Diagram, showing (right) railways in the vicinity of Sellafield.

FacilitiesEdit

The station is not staffed, but there is now a ticket machine in the main building for passengers to buy tickets prior to travel. There is a waiting room on the southbound platform and a shelter on the opposite side; the rest of the main buildings are in private commercial use. The platforms are linked by a footbridge which does not include ramps, so only the Barrow platform has step-free access.[5] Train running information is provided by digital information screens, timetable posters and telephone.

ServicesEdit

Northern Trains
Route 6
Cumbrian Coast, Furness
and Windermere Lines
 
Carlisle      
 
Dalston  
 
Wigton    
 
Aspatria    
 
Maryport    
 
Flimby
 
Workington  
 
Harrington  
 
Parton  
 
Whitehaven    
 
Corkickle
 
St Bees  
 
Nethertown  
 
Braystones
 
Sellafield  
 
Seascale    
 
Drigg
 
Ravenglass for Eskdale  
 
Bootle  
 
Silecroft
 
Millom    
 
Green Road  
 
Foxfield
 
Kirkby-in-Furness  
 
Askam  
 
Barrow-in-Furness    
 
Roose
 
Dalton  
 
Ulverston      
 
Cark & Cartmel  
 
Kents Bank
 
Grange-over-Sands      
 
Arnside  
 
Silverdale  
 
Carnforth  
 
 
 
Windermere  
 
 
Staveley  
 
 
Burneside  
 
 
Kendal    
 
 
Oxenholme Lake District    
 
 
 
Lancaster      
 
Preston      
 
Wigan North Western    
 
Manchester Oxford Road
 
Manchester Piccadilly        
 
Mauldeth Road  
 
Burnage  
 
East Didsbury    
 
Gatley      
 
Heald Green  
 
Manchester Airport      

There is a basic hourly service (with a few variations) in each direction.[6] Certain southbound trains continue to Lancaster, and one service from the south terminates and turns back at Sellafield on weekdays only. Since the summer 2018 timetable came into effect on 20 May, trains operate later into the evening than previously and also on Sundays, the latter provision being the first since May 1976.

It was reported in November 2011 that Direct Rail Services (DRS) had applied to the Office of Rail Regulation to operate one train in each direction between Carlisle and Sellafield to carry workers to Sellafield.[7] Between May 2015 and December 2018, four trains per day each way ran to provide additional seating capacity for workers at the Sellafield plant, using Mark 2 coaches and Class 37 diesel locomotives hired in from DRS.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Places to Visit - Sellafield"Cumbrian Coast Line website; Retrieved 14 November 2016
  2. ^ Sellafield station, looking south Thompson, Nigel Geograph.org; Retrieved 2 December 2016
  3. ^ Sellafield Station Old Cumbria Gazetteer; Retrieved 2 December 2016
  4. ^ Marshall, J (1981) Forgotten Railways North-West England, David & Charles (Publishers) Ltd, Newton Abbott. ISBN 0-7153-8003-6; p.163
  5. ^ Sellafield station facilities National Rail Enquiries; Retrieved 2 December 2016
  6. ^ Table 100 National Rail timetable, December 2019
  7. ^ Clinnick, Richard (2 November 2011). "'Sellafield workers' trains will start this year' says DRS". RAIL (682): 6–7. ISSN 0953-4563.

External linksEdit

Preceding station   National Rail Following station
Braystones   Northern Trains
Cumbrian Coast Line
  Seascale
  Historical railways  
Braystones   Whitehaven and Furness Junction Railway   Seascale