- Penzance railway station
Infobox UK station
latitude = 50.12226
longitude = -5.53223
First Great Western
code = PNZ
platforms = 4
West Cornwall Railway
Great Western Railway
Great Western Railway
years = Opened
events = 1852
usage0203 = 0.392
usage0405 = 0.403
usage0506 = 0.414
usage0607 = 0.462
Penzance railway station serves the town of
Penzance, Cornwall, UK. The station is the western terminus of the convert|305.25|mi|km|0 Cornish Main Linefrom London Paddington. The current journey time to or from London is about five hours.
Platforms 1, 2 and 3 are within the main
train shed; Platform 4 on the south side is in the open air. A large stone at the end of this platform welcomes people to Penzance in both English and Cornish. This side of the station is built on the sea wall near the harbour, the other side is cut into the hillside.
It is the southernmost and westernmost station in
England, although not Great Britainas some stations in Scotlandare further west. The station is operated by First Great Westernas is every other station in Cornwall.
This is the Cornish terminus of the
Night Rivierasleeper train to and from London Paddington station.
The bus station is situated immediately outside the station entrance; this good example of transport integration arising from the
Great Western Railway's operation of most of the early bus services in the area. History has come full circle, with the First Groupagain operating a large number of both the buses and trains in the area.
The Tourism Information Centre is located in the middle of the bus station.
There is also a bus service that connects the railway station with the heliport, from which there are scheduled flights to the
Isles of Scilly.
The station was opened by the
West Cornwall Railwayon 11 March 1852as the terminus of its line from Redruth. This wooden station was replaced by the current buildings in 1879. Further alterations were made in 1937and again in 1983when new a ticket office and buffet were opened. [cite book| last = Bennett| first = Alan| title = The Great Western Railway in West Cornwall| publisher = Runpast Publishing| date = 1988| location = Cheltenham| doi = 1990| id = ISBN 1-870754-12-3 ]
The arch that is blocked up in the wall that retains the hillside behind the platforms was used by the railway as a coal store. Freight traffic, especially the busy fish trade, was handled in a goods yard where the cars are now parked adjacent to the bus station. An engine shed was also situated here before being moved to the opposite side of the line near the end of the retaining wall, but it has since been replaced by the new
Penzance TMDoutside the station at Long Rock.
At Penzance, certain trains use certain platforms:
*Platform 1 - Main Platform for
FGWHST's, FGW Night Riviera
*Platform 2 - Secondary Platform for
FGWHST's, Secondary Platform for FGWDMU Local Services
*Platform 3 -
CrossCountryVoyagers, Main Platform for FGWDMU Local Services, South West TrainsServices
*Platform 4 -
At weekends, Platform 4 is also used by
FGWDMU local services. CrossCountry Voyagers sometimes double up on platform 4, one in front of the other, but not coupled up. The one in front runs an earlier service than the one behind; they can also do this once their services have finished for the day and await to depart to Penzance TMDfor overnight servicing.
Local DMU services are stored on platform 3, and in the sidings off platform 4 overnight for servicing. This leaves platforms 1, 2 and 4 for early morning intercity services to use, before the local services start.
Penzance is the second busiest station in Cornwall after Truro. Comparing the year from April 2006 to that which started in April 2002, passenger numbers increased by 18%. [cite web|title =Station Usage| url=http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk/server/show/nav.1529|work =Rail Statistics|publisher =Office of Rail Regulation|accessdate = 2008-06-30] The statistics cover twelve month periods that start in April.
Penzance is the terminus of the
Cornish Main Linewhich sees a mixture of local trains to Plymouth and longer distance services to London Paddington station, including the Night Rivieraovernight sleeping car service and the Golden Hind which offers an early morning service to London and an evening return. Other fast trains are the mid-morning Cornish Riviera and the afternoon Royal Duchy.
A handful of trains operated by
CrossCountryleave Penzance each morning for Scotlandand return in the evening.
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