Celebrations are underway to mark the past, present and future of Huddersfield’s iconic railway station, as it turned 175-years-old this week.
Industry leaders from Network Rail and TransPennine Express joined the station’s infamous cats, Felix and Bolt, on Platform 1 to mark the milestone anniversary on Wednesday.
Since opening in 1847, the Grade I listed building has witnessed a lifetime of changes. But a new future as one of the key stations along the Transpennine route will see it completely transformed and made fit for the 21st Century.
Plans for the multi-billion-pound Transpennine Route Upgrade include:
- Two new platforms and the extension of existing platforms to improve station capacity
- Improved accessibility – including new footbridge and lifts, and step-free access from the front entrance
- Sympathetic restoration of the station roof
- Additional toilet facilities
- Improved customer information system
- Track upgrades to support more trains
- The tearoom will be relocated on its current platform. The tearoom will be repaired and repainted
Victoria Jones, Transpennine Route Upgrade Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “Over the next decade, Huddersfield station will undergo a major overhaul to create space for more frequent, faster trains, and provide better facilities for the millions of passengers who use it each year.
“To celebrate the station’s 175th anniversary, we’re joining our industry partners to look back on its rich history and look forward to an exciting future. I’d like to thank the community for their ongoing support as we move closer to delivering this once-in-a-generation scheme.”
Daniel Fox, Community Manager for TransPennine Express, said: “Huddersfield station has been at the heart of the town’s community for the last 175 years and it was fantastic to celebrate its birthday alongside the rail industry and local stakeholders. The station will also be important in the town’s future and the investment that is coming through the Transpennine Route Upgrade will deliver a station and a railway truly fit for the 21st century.”
The former Poet Laureate, Sir John Betjeman once described Huddersfield station as “the most splendid in England”, and in 2014 it was named as a Grade I listed building in English Heritage’s top five great stations.
The Transpennine Route Upgrade will go well beyond Huddersfield station. Extra tracks, better stations and a fully electrified route will ultimately bring more frequent, faster journeys between York and Manchester, running on a greener, more reliable railway.
Photo credit: Network Rail