Warrington Bank Quay railway station

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. Cheshire Cat Buses are operated from the station into Warrington Bus Interchange and in the opposite direction to the Centre Park business park, Stockton Heath and further south into Cheshire.[1] The station is directly on the West Coast Main Line.

Warrington Bank Quay National Rail
Platform 2, Warrington Bank Quay railway station (geograph 4019990).jpg
Warrington Bank Quay Station in 2014
Local authorityBorough of Warrington
Grid referenceSJ599878
Station codeWBQ
Managed byAvanti West Coast
Number of platforms4
DfT categoryB
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2014/15Increase 1.081 million
2015/16Increase 1.110 million
2016/17Increase 1.364 million
2017/18Increase 1.390 million
2018/19Decrease 1.339 million
Original companyLondon and North Western Railway
Pre-groupingLondon and North Western Railway
Post-groupingLondon, Midland and Scottish Railway
16 November 1868 (1868-11-16)Station opened
(with platforms on two levels)
9 September 1963Low level platforms closed
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.


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 LevelEdit

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 Avanti West Coast, 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:


Kissing banEdit

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.[10] The signs were removed three weeks later and sold to raise money for Comic Relief[11] with Virgin spokesman Ken Gibbs admitting that the idea was just a bit of fun.[12]


  1. ^ "Cheshire Cat Service Timetable". Warrington's Own Buses. April 2018. Archived from the original on 30 March 2019. Retrieved 30 March 2019.
  2. ^ David Dixon. "Bank Quay Station, Warrington". www.geograph.org.uk. Archived from the original on 2 July 2018. Retrieved 2 July 2018.
  3. ^ "Warrington Guardian article". Warrington Guardian. 2006. Retrieved 1 March 2008.
  4. ^ "Improvements arriving soon at Warrington Bank Quay station". Virgin Trains. 2007. Archived from the original on 30 March 2009. Retrieved 29 March 2008.
  5. ^ Fields, Gilbert & Knight 1980, Photo 251
  6. ^ "Warrington Bank Quay(Low Level)". Disused Stations. 2006. Archived from the original on 16 December 2008. Retrieved 2 January 2009.
  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. ^ Stokes, Paul (16 February 2009). "Kissing banned at railway station". The Daily Telegraph. London. Archived from the original on 10 November 2017. Retrieved 27 May 2010.
  11. ^ "Comic Relief: Warrington station kissing ban takes a Comic turn". Liverpool Daily Post. 10 March 2009. Retrieved 18 April 2012.
  12. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 18 April 2016. Retrieved 2 December 2016.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)


  • 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 readingEdit

External linksEdit

Preceding station   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   Avanti West Coast
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