Waterloo retains top spot as Britain’s busiest station

14 January 2020

Figures published today by the Office of Rail and Road (ORR) confirm that Waterloo Station remains in top spot for the total number of passenger entries and exits with an incredible 94.2 million in a year.

At the other end of the scale, there were three stations with fewer than 100 entries and exits. The least used stations were Denton and Stanlow & Thornton with each only having an estimated 46 entries and exits during the entire year while Reddish South had 60.

Only one station from outside of London makes it into the top 10 busiest, with Birmingham New Street breaking the capital’s dominance and moving above Euston to take 5th place in the busiest stations overall. Two new stations opened in 2018-19, bringing the station total to 2,566. These stations were Kenilworth and Maghull North and attracted 170,912 and 399,066 entries and exits respectively.

Around Great Britain, Glasgow Central retains its position as the busiest station in Scotland and stays at 11th place in the overall list, with passengers using it 32.8 million times, followed by Edinburgh with almost 23.9 million. In Wales, Cardiff Central held on to the top spot with more than 14 million entries and exits, making it 34th overall.

A total of 42 stations had more than 10 million entries and exits during the year. The station with the biggest percentage increase was last year’s least used station, Redcar British Steel, up 800% from 40 to 360 entries and exits in 2018-19. Lochluichart station in Scotland experienced the biggest percentage decline, down 71.5% from 632 to 180 entries and exits.

Notes to editors

  1. The figures cover the period between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019
  2. The statistics together with an interactive dashboard and animated charts are available at: https://dataportal.orr.gov.uk/station-usage
  3. As Britain does not have a fully gated rail network, it is not possible to accurately record passengers joining or leaving the network. Therefore, these estimates of station usage are largely based on ticket sales. This places a number of limitations on the data, which users should be aware of. Further information can be found on the website.