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Newport railway station

Welsh: Casnewydd
175011 at Newport in 2009 with an Arriva Trains Wales service to Carmarthen.
Place Newport
Local authority Newport
Grid reference
Station code NWP
Managed by Arriva Trains Wales
Number of platforms 4
DfT category B
Live arrivals/departures, station information and onward connections
from National Rail Enquiries
Annual rail passenger usage*
2004/05  1.828 million
2005/06 1.906 million
2006/07 2.012 million
2007/08 2.155 million
2008/09 2.161 million
2009/10 2.182 million
2010/11 2.291 million
2011/12 2.274 million
2012/13 2.250 million
2013/14 2.291 million
18 June 1850 Opened
1880 Enlarged
1928 Enlarged
2010 Enlarged
National RailUK railway stations
* Annual estimated passenger usage based on sales of tickets in stated financial year(s) which end or originate at Newport from Office of Rail and Road statistics. Methodology may vary year on year.
UK Railways portal

Newport railway station (Welsh: Casnewydd) is the third-busiest railway station in Wales (after Cardiff Central and Cardiff Queen Street), situated in Newport city centre. It is part of the British railway system owned by Network Rail and is operated by Arriva Trains Wales, although Great Western Railway and CrossCountry also provide services. The main station entrance is located on Queensway, and a small section of road known as Station Approach links this to the High Street. The station was originally opened in 1850 by the South Wales Railway Company and was greatly expanded in 1928.

British Transport Police maintain a presence at Newport.[1]


  • Services 1
    • Arriva Trains Wales 1.1
    • CrossCountry 1.2
    • Great Western Railway 1.3
    • Ebbw Vale services 1.4
  • History 2
    • Naming 2.1
  • Accidents and incidents 3
  • Facilities 4
    • 2007 development 4.1
    • 2009 development 4.2
    • Future developments 4.3
  • See also 5
  • References 6


Newport is currently served by three train operating companies: Arriva Trains Wales, CrossCountry and Great Western Railway.

Arriva Trains Wales

175005 departs with an Arriva Trains Wales service along the Welsh Marches Line.
A Class 158 Express Sprinter units, at Newport Station on 13 August 2008. A Police Community Support Officer (PCSO) of the British Transport Police can be seen on duty walking on the platform

In October 2008 the Welsh Assembly Government announced the launch of a new faster services between Cardiff and North Wales. The service was first operated by Arriva Trains Wales using Class 57 locomotives and Mark II passenger rolling stock. The service has premier business-class accommodation.[2] In March 2012 the service was upgraded to Class 67 locomotives and Mark III rolling stock.


170104 at Newport with an CrossCountry service to Cardiff Central from Nottingham.

Great Western Railway

158957 arrives at Newport with a First Great Western service to Portsmouth Harbour with the two different styles of GWR logo on the benches

Ebbw Vale services

Phase Two of the Ebbw Valley Railway project would see the restoration of direct trains between Newport and Ebbw Vale and resurrect the suburban rail link with Rogerstone. In March 2008 following the success of phase one - direct services between Cardiff Central and Ebbw Vale - the Welsh Assembly Government's Minister for Economy and Transport launched a feasibility study into the restoration of direct trains from Newport. Significant works need to be carried out including the re-instatement of a set of points, refurbished track, new signals at the Gaer and Park junctions as well as track extensions between Crosskeys and Llanhilleth. The Welsh Assembly Government announced in July 2009 that the relevant works to enable direct trains between Ebbw Vale and Newport would be complete by 2011.[3] However, no decision will be made until at least 2011.[4]

As of November 2013, there are no services between Newport and Ebbw Vale.

Preceding station National Rail National Rail Following station
Cardiff Central   Arriva Trains Wales
Maesteg / Cardiff Central - Cheltenham Spa
  Severn Tunnel Junction
  Arriva Trains Wales
Milford Haven/Carmarthen - Manchester Piccadilly
  Arriva Trains Wales
Cardiff - Holyhead
Cardiff Central   CrossCountry
Cardiff Central - Nottingham
  Severn Tunnel Junction
Cardiff Central to Manchester Piccadilly via Bristol Temple Meads
(Mondays to Saturdays only, limited service)
  Severn Tunnel Junction
Cardiff Central   First Great Western
Cardiff Central / Swansea - London Paddington
  Bristol Parkway
  Great Western Railway
Cardiff Central - Taunton
  Severn Tunnel Junction
  Great Western Railway
Cardiff Central - Brighton / Portsmouth Harbour
  Severn Tunnel Junction
Filton Abbey Wood
  Future services  
Pye Corner   Arriva Trains Wales
Ebbw Valley Railway


British Railways Western Region "totem" sign for Newport High Street.
Up freight in 1963
Down iron ore train entering the station in 1963

The current station layout consists of four through-platforms numbered 1 to 4 from the south side. The original broad gauge station had only two 200-foot-long (61 m) through platforms and a bay platform at the east end of the down platform. The Hillfield railway tunnels to the west of the station were dug under Stow Hill in the 1840s.[5] On the closure of Dock Street and Mill Street stations to passengers in 1880, High Street station was greatly expanded: The up platform was made into an island - the north face 825 feet (251 m) in length, and the south side 814 feet (248 m). The down platform was extended to 897 feet (273 m), with the west end bay extended to 428 feet (130 m). Two scissors crossovers were provided on these new platforms, effectively dividing them into two. The original down platform became Nos. 1 and 2. The bay became No. 3, the south face of the up platform Nos. 4 and 5 and the north face Nos. 6 and 7. The bay platform was mostly used for Monmouthshire western valleys services, but with the quadrupling of the line in 1912 trains from the bay platform (on the south side) now had to cross the entire station to get to the Gaer Tunnel on the north side. To address this the former loading dock on the north side of the station was made into a passenger platform (No. 8).

April 1961 saw the introduction of colour Multiple-Aspect Signalling and associated modifications to the station layout. The north face of the island platform became the new up platform, with the south face becoming the new down. The platforms were also renumbered in the opposite direction to match the new line designations — No. 8 became No. 1, Nos. 6/7 became 2, Nos. 4/5 became No. 5 and Nos. 1/2 became No. 6. Lines 3 and 4 became the designations for the through non-platform lines. Subsequent removal of the scissors crossovers saw a further combination and renumbering of platforms to the current layout.


Exterior of the old concourse, converted to offices in 2011

Originally named Newport High Street, the suffix High Street became unnecessary on the closure of Mill Street and Dock Street stations to goods traffic in the 1960s.[6] Printed tickets and National Rail enquiries use the suffix "South Wales" to differentiate this station from its namesake in Essex. Newport Unlimited have suggested the station is officially renamed Newport City railway station.[7]

Accidents and incidents

  • On 19 August 1938, a passenger train was sent into a siding due to a signalman's error. It crashed through the buffers but the locomotive stopped short of falling into the River Usk.[8]


The "Archform" sculpture by Harvey Hood, in the station forecourt on the site of the old west-facing bay platform

Platform 1 is only mainly used for westbound services to Cardiff Central during peak times. Platform 2 is usually the stopping point for all westbound services to Cardiff Central. Platform 3 is usually the stopping point for eastbound services to London Paddington and Nottingham. Platform 4 is usually the stopping point for eastbound services to Manchester Piccadilly, Holyhead, Portsmouth Harbour, Taunton and Cheltenham Spa and will also be used by trains to Ebbw Vale following the full re-opening of the Ebbw Valley Railway.

A British Transport Police station and a branch of WH Smith are situated on platform 1. The waiting room and customer toilets are situated between platforms 2 and 3, as is the Upper Crust café. Also between platforms 2 and 3 is a customer help desk. The booking hall is situated between the main entrance and platform 1. There are three main windows for tickets for immediate travel and a travel centre which handles enquiries, complaints and issues tickets for future travel. In the booking hall there is also a small buffet, telephones, automatic ticket machines and a photo booth. Wheelchair access between platforms is provided by a subway, accessed by a lift from the platforms. Also, a ramp from platforms 2 and 3 leads into a subway that links Mill Street to the city centre. There is a short-stay car park and taxi rank situated to the front and a long-stay car park to the rear which is accessible via a footbridge from all platforms. Since October 2005, automatic ticket barriers have been installed. At the same time, the ticket barriers are being used more often, before used during peak periods and match days, now manned throughout the day until late in the evening.

2007 development

The Welsh Assembly Government and Network Rail agreed a £20 million makeover for the station that provided two new concourses, a second pedestrian bridge over the tracks and a user-friendly bus-rail interchange at the station. The plans also included an extended platform 4 capable of accommodating up to twelve-carriage intercity trains and a new multi-storey car park for long-stay travellers. The initial redevelopment of Platform 4 did not allow for disabled access, resulting in station staff using a locally-contracted taxi firm at £3 a passenger to move disabled and elderly passengers the half-mile from one side of the station to the other, in a complimentary service provision.[9] The first phase, platform 4 extension, was completed on 2 July 2007, with design works completed by Atkins.[10]

2009 development

Panorama of the interior of the new footbridge at the south stairwell.
Exterior of the new concourse opened 2010

Planned to enable the station to cope with passenger traffic associated with the 2010 Ryder Cup, a second passenger bridge was built linking the whole station with a lift for all platforms. Network Rail claimed accessibility and safety are at the heart of the new design. The new bridge is clad in ethylene tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE),[11] the material which protects the Eden Project in Cornwall. The station enhancements were engineered by Atkins Engineers, based in Exeter and Swindon, with design support from Grimshaw Architects and Vector Foiltec working as sub-consultants.[12] The new north and south concourses opened on 13 September 2010.[13]

The development was criticised by RAIL magazine columnist Barry Doe for being at the wrong end of the station, a lack of seating and generally poor design.[14] Arriva Trains Wales also expressed concern about a leaking roof, an inadequate customer service area and insufficient ticket gates.[11] Network Rail said the roof was fixed in mid-May 2011, but leaks were reported by a journalist later that month.[11] In 2013 it was reported that the roof was still leaking.[15]

Future developments

The whole Newport area is being re-signalled from 2009–12 which will include speed upgrades on the relief lines. The Welsh Assembly Government working with Sewta is also looking to provide an additional service (one in every two hours) to Abergavenny with a re-opened station in Caerleon. This would mean that there would be two trains per hour between Cwmbran and Abergavenny and an hourly service to Pontypool and New Inn. Provision of this project would be subject to line enhancements in Abergavenny. The Great Western Main Line is due to be electrified by 2017 as part of the Great Western Main Line electrification scheme.[16]

See also


  1. ^ British Transport Police, Wales & Western Area - Newport High Street
  2. ^ "SEWTA". SEWTA. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  3. ^ "National Transport Plan" (PDF). Welsh Assembly Government. Retrieved 2009-07-27. 
  4. ^ "'"Ebbw Vale to Newport rail decision 'in 2011. BBC News. 2010-07-20. Retrieved 2010-07-20. 
  5. ^ "A Summary of the Early History of Newport". Bob Trett, Retrieved 1 October 2007. 
  6. ^ Railway Magazine, July 1960
  7. ^ "Newport Unlimited Minutes of the Meeting of the Board held on 22 November 2007". Newport Unlimited. 2007-11-22. Retrieved 2008-02-05. 
  8. ^ Earnshaw, Alan (1991). Trains in Trouble: Vol. 7. Penryn: Atlantic Books.  
  9. ^ Taxis used between rail platforms BBC News - 17 August 2007
  10. ^ "Newport Unlimited Annual Review 2005-06". Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  11. ^ a b c Clark, Rhodri (July 2011). "Newport station roof leaks".  
  12. ^ "Station revamp ahead of Ryder Cup". BBC News. 2009-07-27. Retrieved 2009-07-27. 
  13. ^ "Lasting benefits from £22m newport station upgrade". Retrieved 2010-09-16. 
  14. ^ Doe, Barry (2011-05-04). "The Fare Dealer".  
  15. ^ "'"Newport £22m railway station futuristic roof 'leaking. BBC News. 26 April 2013. 
  16. ^ "Great Western electrification and IEP to go ahead". 1 March 2011. Retrieved 2013-01-22. 
  • South Wales Main Line - Newport ISBN 1-874103-76-3
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