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Manchester Victoria station

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Title: Manchester Victoria station  
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Subject: Manchester Piccadilly station, Manchester Arena, Exchange Square Metrolink station, Shudehill Interchange, List of Manchester Metrolink stations
Collection: Former Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Stations, Manchester Metrolink Stations in Manchester, Manchester Metrolink Stations on the Altrincham–bury Line, Manchester Metrolink Stations on the Bury–ashton-Under-Lyne Line, Manchester Metrolink Stations on the East Didsbury – Rochdale Line, Railway Stations in Manchester, Railway Stations Opened in 1844, Railway Stations Served by First Transpennine Express, Railway Stations Served by Northern Rail
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Manchester Victoria station

Manchester Victoria
Victoria Railway Station in October 2009
Place Manchester city centre
Local authority City of Manchester
Grid reference
Station code MCV
Managed by Northern Rail
Number of platforms 6 (National Rail)
4 (Manchester Metrolink)
DfT category B
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2006/07  5.060 million
2007/08 4.006 million
2008/09 6.174 million
2009/10 6.146 million
2010/11 6.667 million
2011/12 6.782 million
2012/13 6.851 million
2013/14 7.241 million
Passenger Transport Executive
PTE Greater Manchester
Zone City (D)
1844 Opened
1902 Extended
1993–96 Northern portion reconstructed
2014–15 Renovated
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Manchester Victoria from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
UK Railways portal

Manchester Victoria railway station in Manchester, England is the city's second largest mainline railway station and one of eight Metrolink tram stations within the city zone. It lies to the north of the city centre on Hunts Bank, close to Manchester Cathedral. Victoria is Manchester's tertiary station (after Piccadilly and Oxford Road) in the Manchester station group and the busiest station managed by Northern Rail. Its management will be transferred to Network Rail in February 2016 once the current Northern Rail franchise expires.

The station predominantly hosts local and regional services to destinations in northern England, such as Rochdale, Bradford, Leeds, Newcastle, Huddersfield, Wigan, Southport, Blackpool, and Liverpool using the original Liverpool to Manchester line. Most trains calling at Victoria are operated by Northern Rail, except for First TransPennine Express services from Liverpool to Newcastle and during engineering works, when some trains are diverted from Piccadilly.

Several former railway lines into the station have been converted to light-rail operation as part of the Metrolink system: The line to Bury was converted in the early 1990s as part of the first phase of the Metrolink system, and the line through Oldham to Rochdale was converted during 2009-2012. Trams switch to on-street running once they emerge from Victoria Station and continue southwards through the city centre to Piccadilly or Ashton-under-Lyne.

In 2009, Victoria was voted the worst category B interchange station in the United Kingdom.[1] The station underwent a two-year £44 million modernisation programme from 2013 which was completed in August 2015.[2][3] Renovation entailed electrification of lines through the station, a new Metrolink station with an additional platform, restoration of listed features, upgraded retail units, and a new roof.[4][5] As part of the Northern Hub plan, Victoria will become the rail hub for trans-Pennine services when the Ordsall Chord is completed in 2018, and passenger numbers are expected to rise to 12 million when the station serves more destinations.[6]


  • History 1
  • Renovation 2
  • National Rail services 3
    • Service summary 3.1
      • Westbound services 3.1.1
      • Eastbound services 3.1.2
  • Victoria Metrolink station 4
  • Services 5
  • Gallery 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Railway Clearing House map of central Manchester railways in 1910
Platforms 11 (left) and 12 (right), looking west towards Manchester Exchange in 1964
The station in 1988. Showing the former platforms and trainshed, which now lie under the Manchester Arena

In 1838 John Brogden[7][8] on 1 January 1844. It was named Victoria by permission of Queen Victoria. The long single platform handled M&LR trains to Leeds and elsewhere at its eastern end. The Liverpool and Manchester Railway extended its line from Ordsall, near the original Manchester Liverpool Road railway station, and its trains operated from Victoria's western end from 4 May 1844.[9]

By the mid-1840s six railway companies operated from the station connecting Manchester to London, Glasgow, Liverpool, Leeds and Sheffield. Victoria Station came to dominate the Long Millgate area and was one of the biggest passenger stations in Britain.

Overlooking the station concourse in 2012 before re-development in 2014.

Victoria was enlarged by William Dawes, who is responsible for most of its facade, in 1909. The enlarged station was erected on land consecrated as a burial ground on 1 January 1815 by the Bishop of Chester; it was acquired by the Manchester and Leeds Railway in 1844.[10] The enlarged station had 17 platforms. Wealthy commuters travelled from Blackpool and Southport faster than is possible today (e.g. 45 minutes from Southport in 1910, 67 today; and 65 minutes from Blackpool in 1910, 77 today) in specially-constructed club cars hauled by express steam locomotives. The non-stop services were abandoned in the early 1960s.

The Edwardian station has a 160 yards (146 m) façade with an iron and glass canopy bearing the names of the original destinations served, and a tile mural depicting the routes of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway that operated most trains from the station between 1847 and 1923, when it became a constituent of the London, Midland and Scottish Railway. Canopies covering the waiting area for taxi cabs damaged in the Provisional IRA 1996 bombing have been restored. The cast-iron train sheds behind the façade are 700 yards (640 m) long. The station was approached by a wooden footbridge over the River Irk until the river was culverted.

In 1884 Manchester Exchange Station, operated by the rival London and North Western Railway, was built alongside Victoria and after 1929, a single passenger platform which linked the stations was the longest passenger platform in Europe at 2,194 feet (669 m). Exchange Station closed in 1969 and its services were transferred to Victoria. Its site opposite the cathedral is now a car park. Platforms 1–3 at Victoria were also closed.

In the early 1970s, the Picc-Vic tunnel project proposed building an underground station, Victoria Low Level.[11] The tunnel project was cancelled and rail improvements concentrated on the introduction of light rail. The station received Grade II listed building status in 1988 for its period features and neo-Baroque Edwardian facade, ticketing hall, Victorian dome, tiled map of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway and a memorial for servicemen who did not return after World War I.[12]

Manchester Arena was joined to the station between 1992 and 1996 by means of a raft above the station's through platforms. It is accessed via stairs on Hunts Bank and from the station concourse. During its construction the station was reduced in size from 14 platforms to 6. Most through tracks were removed, along with platforms 12—17 and their overall roof and platform buildings.


The completed new roof at Victoria in June 2015
Station concourse following completion of the new roof.

In 2009 the station was identified as the worst category B interchange station because of its dilapidated fabric and environment. The Transport Secretary, Lord Adonis, announced that, with nine others, it would receive a share of £50 million for a refurbishment programme.[13] Victoria's £5m share of the 'Better Stations' Network Rail funding for improvements was cancelled in the June 2010 budget cuts,[14] but replacement funding was arranged.[15] On 16 February 2010 Network Rail announced its intention to refurbish the station in the Northern Hub improvement proposals turning it into an interchange for local and regional services throughout north-west England. In August 2010, Network Rail announced the work would go ahead, despite withdrawal of the £5 million funding.[16] Station improvements include an ETFE roof, restoration of its walls, exterior canopy and period features, new platforms for additional services, improved access to the Manchester Arena and improved retail and dining facilities.[17]

The Ordsall Chord linking Victoria to Piccadilly will be operational in 2016 and additional platforms will be built by 2019 to provide extra capacity.[18] It is anticipated that, as a result of re-routing services, passenger numbers will increase to 12 million by 2019, compared with 6.6 million in 2011/12.[19] Construction of the Ordsall Chord will allow trains to run directly between Piccadilly and Victoria, shortening journey times on First TransPennine Express routes between Manchester Airport and Newcastle, Middlesbrough, Hull and Scarborough. An express service from Liverpool Lime Street to Newcastle via Victoria is operated by First TransPennine Express. Reinstatement of the south and west curve at Todmorden on the Caldervale Line facilitated a direct service between Victoria and Burnley Manchester Road Station for the first time in almost fifty years. As part of Network Rail's electrification strategy, overhead electric wires will be erected from Victoria to Liverpool, Preston via Bolton, and Blackpool, and on the North TransPennine route to York via Leeds, allowing most services to be operated by electric traction.[17]

Work on restoring the station began in April 2013.[20] The old roof was dismantled in autumn 2013.[21] Installation of the £17 million ETFE roof began on 4 May 2014, and the 15th and final roof beam was lifted into position on 13 October 2014. Installation of the ETFE sheeting was completed in spring 2015, and the station upgrade was completed in August 2015,[22] with the official reopening that October.[23]

National Rail services

Tiled Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway map at Victoria Station.

Manchester Victoria is served by two train operating companies, primarily Northern Rail and First TransPennine Express for its Liverpool to Newcastle service. It is occasionally used by CrossCountry services during engineering works.

Northern Rail operates Class 142 Pacers and 150 or 156 Sprinter DMUs on most train services around Manchester, while the Leeds Calder Valley services are usually operated by British Rail Class 150, Class 155 or 158 Sprinter DMUs. The Leeds via Dewsbury services mainly use 3-car Class 144 Monday - Friday, although at weekends this service sees other classes on the route such as a pair of Class 153 DMUs or Class 150 or 155.

Sometimes night services between Manchester Airport and York operate via Manchester Victoria, but do not call and continue via Ashton-under-Lyne to rejoin the usual route at Stalybridge, or continue through Rochdale and Hebden Bridge before reaching Huddersfield. A limited service between Manchester Airport and Victoria via Salford Crescent operates calling at Salford Crescent, Manchester Oxford Road, Manchester Piccadilly and Manchester Airport.

Service summary

Westbound services

Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Kearsley, Farnworth, Moses Gate, Bolton and Wigan Wallgate
Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Westhoughton, Hindley and Wigan Wallgate
Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Swinton, Moorside, Walkden, Atherton, Hag Fold, Daisy Hill, Hindley, Ince, Wigan Wallgate, Pemberton, Orrell, Upholland, Rainford and Kirkby
Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Swinton, Walkden, Atherton, Daisy Hill, Hindley, Wigan Wallgate, Gathurst, Appley Bridge, Parbold, Hoscar, Burscough Bridge, New Lane, Bescar Lane, Meols Cop and Southport

Note that the Monday - Saturday peak 17:06 is a faster Wigan Wallgate service, which calls only at:

Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Atherton, Daisy Hill, Wigan Wallgate, Gathurst, Appley Bridge, Parbold, Burscough Bridge, Meols Cop and Southport.
Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Lostock, Horwich Parkway, Blackrod, Adlington, Chorley, Buckshaw Parkway, Leyland, Preston, Kirkham and Wesham, Poulton-le-Fylde, Layton and Blackpool North
Salford Central, Salford Crescent, Bolton, Hall-i-th-Wood, Bromley Cross, Darwen, Blackburn, Ramsgreave & Wilpshire, Langho, Whalley and Clitheroe
Eccles, Patricroft, Newton-le-Willows, Earlestown, St. Helens Junction, Lea Green, Rainhill, Whiston, Huyton, Roby, Broad Green, Wavertree Tech Park, Edge Hill and Liverpool Lime Street

Eastbound services

Mills Hill, Castleton, Rochdale, Smithy Bridge, Littleborough and Todmorden
Ashton-under-Lyne and Stalybridge
Ashton-under-Lyne, Stalybridge, Mossley, Greenfield, Marsden, Slaithwaite and Huddersfield
  • 2tph to Leeds calling at:
Rochdale, Todmorden, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd (1tph), Sowerby Bridge (1tph), Halifax, Bradford Interchange, New Pudsey, Bramley and Leeds
Moston, Mills Hill , Castleton, Rochdale, Smithy Bridge, Littleborough, Walsden, Todmorden, Hebden Bridge, Mytholmroyd, Sowerby Bridge, Brighouse, Mirfield , Ravensthorpe (Peak Hours only) , Dewsbury , Batley , Morley , Cottingley (peak hours only) and Leeds
Huddersfield, Leeds, York, Northallerton, Darlington, Durham, Chester-Le-Street (alternate hours) and Newcastle (First TransPennine Express)

Victoria Metrolink station

Victoria Metrolink Station in October 2015
Victoria is located in Manchester_Metrolink
Location of Victoria in Greater Manchester
Place Manchester city centre
Local authority City of Manchester
Grid reference
Platforms 3
Fare zone information
Metrolink Zone D (City)
Present status In operation
Conversion to Metrolink operation 4 June 1992
UK Trams portal

Manchester Victoria is served by Manchester's Metrolink light rail system, at the northern edge of the City Centre zone, on the Bury Line. Metrolink services run through Victoria to Altrincham, Bury, East Didsbury, Oldham, Rochdale, Piccadilly & Ashton-Under-Lyne . Trams enter Victoria station from Shudehill Interchange by crossing Corporation Street and Long Millgate and passing through a specially constructed arch in the station wall. From there they curve right and stop at the Metrolink platforms.

The Metrolink station is at the southern end of the station near the exits, occupying the site of the former Bury electric train platforms. The Metrolink station was built with three platforms, A, B and C; Platform A, close to the point where the trams enter the station, was used for Bury-bound trams, but is closed to the public because of leaks in the station roof. Platforms B and C are on an island platform further along the tracks.

The Metrolink system was opened in 1992, the result of a project to link Piccadilly and Victoria Stations with a rail line running across the city.[24] Earlier proposals involving an underground railway were abandoned but Greater Manchester Council secured funding for a light rail system. The system is based on conversion of selected British Rail lines to light rail operation, linked by on-street tram tracks. The Bury line to Victoria opened as a Metrolink line in 1992, replacing heavy rail trains with Metrolink trams.

The Metrolink line from Victoria to Oldham opened on 13 June 2012, replacing the long-established heavy rail line. Trams on this route run from East Didsbury through the city centre before continuing to Oldham and beyond. The Oldham extension runs via a temporary station, 'Oldham Mumps', close to the site of Oldham Mumps railway station, demolished in 2010/11 after the Oldham Loop heavy rail line closed before its conversion to the Metrolink line. The Mumps section has been abandoned and the line has now been diverted to pass through the streets of central Oldham, via several new stations, including one in Oldham town centre. Services were extended from Oldham Mumps to Shaw along the Oldham loop line on 16 December 2012, to Rochdale railway station on 28 February 2013 and to East Didsbury on 23 May 2013. From 11 February 2013, services from Bury to Piccadilly were extended to Droylsden, and to Ashton-under-Lyne on 9 October 2013.

The Metrolink platforms at Victoria closed temporarily on 21 February 2014 for a period of nine months, to allow them to be rebuilt.[25] In October 2014 it was announced that Metrolink services stopping at Victoria station would not resume until early 2015.[26] The stop reopened on 18 February 2015 and trams began calling at the new platforms.[27]


Services mostly run every 12 minutes on all routes.



  1. ^ "Is Victoria UK's worst station?". BBC News. 17 November 2009. Retrieved 19 January 2014. 
  2. ^ "Manchester Victoria station's restoration works start". BBC News. 9 April 2013. Retrieved 9 April 2013. 
  3. ^
  4. ^ "Engineering work at Manchester Victoria stops trains". BBC News. 15 November 2013. 
  5. ^ "Manchester Victoria Metrolink station closes for upgrade". BBC News. 2 May 2014. Retrieved 2 May 2014. 
  6. ^ "Manchester Victoria Station redevelopment". Network Rail. Retrieved 6 April 2013. 
  7. ^ Marshall, J.D. (1970). The Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway, volume 1.  
  8. ^ Wells, Jeffrey (2000). The Eleven Towns Railway.  
  9. ^ Ferneyhough 1980, p. 105
  10. ^ Axon 1886, p. 147
  11. ^ "SELNEC Picc-Vic Line". SELNEC PTE. October 1971.  publicity brochure
  12. ^  
  13. ^ Weaver, Matthew (17 November 2009). "Off the rails: Britain's 10 worst stations named and shamed". The Guardian (London). Retrieved 7 March 2012. 
  14. ^ "Manchester Victoria station's £30m revamp now uncertain". BBC News. 25 May 2010. 
  15. ^ "'"£50m revamp for 'worst stations. BBC News. 17 November 2009. Retrieved 17 November 2009. 
  16. ^ "Victoria revamp to get go-ahead despite cash blow". Manchester Evening News. 4 August 2010. 
  17. ^ a b "North West electrification". Network Rail. n.d. Retrieved 21 February 2015. 
  18. ^ "Manchester Victoria - Timeline".  
  19. ^ "Report for Resolution - Manchester Victoria Station" (PDF). Manchester City Council. 20 December 2012. Retrieved 15 March 2013. 
  20. ^ "Manchester Victoria station's restoration works start". BBC News. 9 April 2013. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  21. ^ "Manchester Victoria station redevelopment". Network Rail. n.d. Retrieved 13 April 2013. 
  22. ^
  23. ^ "Manchester Victoria reopens after £44m upgrade". BBC News. 6 October 2015. Retrieved 6 October 2015. 
  24. ^ Greater Manchester Passenger Transport Executive (1984). "  - publicity brochure
  25. ^ "Metrolink: Time to make Victoria posh" (Press release). Transport for Greater Manchester. 6 February 2014. Archived from the original on 22 February 2014. Retrieved 7 February 2014. 
  26. ^ "Manchester Victoria station's Metrolink stop to be completed in early 2015" (Press release). Network Rail. 21 October 2014. Retrieved 21 February 2015. 
  27. ^ "Manchester Victoria Metrolink stop reopens in £44m upgrade". BBC News. 18 February 2015. Retrieved 21 February 2015. 


  • Axon, William E. (1886). "The annals of Manchester: a chronological record from the earliest times to the end of 1885". Manchester and London: J. Heywood, Deansgate and Ridgefield. Retrieved 21 October 2013. 
  • Bairstow, Martin (1987). The Manchester & Leeds Railway : the Calder Valley Line. M. Bairstow.  
  • Ferneyhough, Frank (1980). Liverpool & Manchester Railway 1830-1980. Book Club Associates. 
  • Wray, Tom (2006). "Manchester Victoria Station". 

External links

  • Train times and station information for Manchester Victoria station from National Rail
  • Tram times and station information for Manchester Victoria station from Manchester Metrolink
  • More photos of the Metrolink at Victoria
Preceding station   Manchester Metrolink   Following station
Rochdale Town Centre – Ashton-under-Lyne Line
towards Piccadilly
Bury – Piccadilly Line
Monday to Saturday peak only
towards Bury
towards East Didsbury
East Didsbury – Bury Line
  Under Construction  
Manchester Airport Line
Open between Manchester Airport and Cornbrook
Second City Crossing Terminus
National Rail National Rail
First TransPennine Express
North TransPennine
Intercity Express Service
Terminus Northern Rail
Terminus Northern Rail
Terminus Northern Rail
Northern Rail
Manchester-Preston Line or
Manchester Victoria-Wigan North Western
Monday-Saturdays only
Northern Rail Terminus
Northern Rail Terminus
Northern Rail
Northern Rail
Monday-Saturday only
Northern Rail
Monday-Saturday only
Northern Rail
Monday-Saturdays only
Northern Rail
Monday-Saturdays only
Northern Rail
Northern Rail
  Historical Railways  
Terminus L&YR
London and North Western Railway
Manchester-Liverpool Line
  Future services  
Liverpool Lime Street   High Speed 3   Leeds
Liverpool Lime Street   High Speed 3   Sheffield
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