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Windermere railway station is the railway station that serves Windermere in Cumbria, England. It is just south of the A591, about 25 min walk or a short bus ride from the lake. The station is located behind a branch of the Booths supermarket chain, which occupies the site of the original station building, in front of the Lakeland store. It is the terminus of the former Kendal and Windermere Railway[1] single-track Windermere Branch Line, with a single platform (much longer than the trains usually seen there today) serving one terminal track.

Windermere National Rail
Windermere railway station 2008.JPG
End of the line at Windermere Railway Station.
Local authoritySouth Lakeland
Grid referenceSD413986
Station codeWDM
Managed byNorthern
Number of platforms1
DfT categoryE
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2013/14Increase 0.401 million
2014/15Increase 0.418 million
2015/16Increase 0.420 million
2016/17Decrease 0.415 million
2017/18Increase 0.422 million
Key datesOpened 1847 (1847)
Original companyKendal and Windermere Railway
Pre-groupingLondon and North Western Railway
20 April 1847Opened
1973Reduced to single track
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Windermere from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.

The Terrace, a row of cottages, built for railway executives in 1849, are said to have been designed by the architect Augustus Pugin. One of the fireplaces is a copy of one of his in the Palace of Westminster.[2]

The selection of the town of Birthwaite as the location of the station serving the lake was what led to it taking the name Windermere, even though it is not on the water (nowadays it has essentially grown together with Bowness-on-Windermere, which touches the lake).



Windermere station in 1951

The station was at one time bigger than at present, with four platforms and an overall roof.[3] Three tracks were taken out of use when the branch was reduced to a one-train operated single line in 1973 as an economy measure. The single track was cut back to a new truncated station in 1986 following the demolition of the trainshed and the building of a supermarket, which incorporates the facade and canopy of the original station. The Booths supermarket has also been designed to mimic the appearance of the original trainshed.


The station has a staffed ticket office that is open throughout the week (06:00- 20:45 Weekdays and Saturdays, 10:30 to 20:45 Sundays); a self-service ticket machine is also provided for use outside these times and for collecting pre-paid tickets. A post box, toilets and a waiting room are available, along with cycle hire facilities and a pay phone. Running information is offered via digital CIS displays and timetable posters. Level access is available from the ticket office and station entrance to the platform.[4]


Northern run a mixture of Class 185 and Class 156 diesel multiple units at a frequency of one per hour in each direction along the line, which runs through Staveley, Burneside, and Kendal, and then interchanges with Virgin Trains West Coast Main Line services at Oxenholme Lake District. A couple of services per day then run to Manchester Airport, while a few continue beyond Oxenholme but only as far as Lancaster or Preston.[5] There is also a service to Blackpool North every weeknight and a daily service from Barrow-in-Furness. The station was formerly managed by the First TransPennine Express franchise prior to early 2016

The station is also a hub for Stagecoach bus services connecting Windermere with Coniston, Grasmere, Keswick, Kendal and other destinations in Cumbria. Stagecoach also run regular buses through the town to the lake at Bowness-on-Windermere on the 599 route; these buses are open-top double-decker buses and run every 20 minutes in the summer.[6] The 597 minibus service links the station with the housing estates and health centre three mornings a week.[7]


The nature[clarification needed] of the Oxenholme to Windermere line would make it difficult to run additional services on the line.[8][dead link] However, Network Rail are looking at the possibility of an infill electrification project to allow direct electric services to operate between Manchester and Windermere after electrification of the Manchester-Bolton-Chorley-Preston line and extra capacity on the line to allow new direct services to London Euston.[8] This was confirmed in late 2014, and the £16 million scheme was due for completion in 2017.[9] This date has since been pushed back into the next Network Rail control period (CP 5, 2019-2024), with no time frame for completion currently (summer 2017) available.[10][out of date]

Under the new rail franchise agreements for the north of England awarded in December 2015, responsibility for operating the line passed from First TransPennine Express to Northern in April 2016.[11]


  1. ^ "Opening of the Kendal and Windermere Railway". Westmorland Gazette. England. 24 April 1847. Retrieved 10 April 2016 – via British Newspaper Archive.
  2. ^ "A W N Pugin in Cumbria". Visit Cumbria. Retrieved 1 March 2014.
  3. ^ Vaughn, p.115
  4. ^ Windermere station facilities National Rail Enquiries
  5. ^ GB eNRT 2017 Edition, Table 83 (Network Rail)
  6. ^ Lakes Connection Service 599 Summer 2016
  7. ^ Windermere Town Service 597
  8. ^ a b Network Rail - WCML Route Utilisation Strategy
  9. ^ Government confirms £16 million Windermere electrification Rail News article 28 November 2014; Retrieved 16 December 2015
  10. ^ "Oxenholme to Windermere railway upgrade delayed" BBC News article 15 November 2016; Retrieved 27 June 2017
  11. ^ Northern Rail Franchise Improvements - DfT Retrieved 16 December 2015
  • Vaughn, J.A.M (1980), Modern Branch Line Album, Ian Allan Publishing Ltd (Shepperton, Surrey). ISBN 0-7110-1030-7

External linksEdit

Preceding station     National Rail   Following station
Terminus   Northern Connect
Windermere - Manchester Airport
  Staveley (limited service)

Coordinates: 54°22′48″N 2°54′11″W / 54.380°N 2.903°W / 54.380; -2.903