Cork Kent railway station
Cork Kent railway station in 2009
|Location||Lower Glanmire Road, Cork, T23 E6TD|
Republic of Ireland
|Owned by||Iarnród Éireann|
|Operated by||Iarnród Éireann|
|1893||Station opened as Glanmire Road|
|1966||Renamed as Kent Station|
Dublin to Cork
|Mallow to Youghal/Cóbh|
Kent Station (Irish: Stáisiún Cheannt) is an Iarnród Éireann railway station in Cork, Ireland. Originally opened in 1893, the station operates as a hub for Intercity services to Dublin and Tralee and commuter services to Mallow, Cobh and Midleton. In 2016, Kent Station was the fifth busiest station in the Republic Of Ireland, as well as the busiest outside of Dublin.
The station opened on 2 February 1893 and the current building was built in the same year; the station replaced two earlier stations that served as separate termini for the Great Southern and Western Railway (GS&WR) and Cork & Youghal Railway (C&Y). The original GS&WR station for the Glanmire line was located directly in front of the portal of the tunnel through which the railway into Cork passed, while the original C&Y terminus was above the tunnel portal; the purpose of the new station was to allow through running of trains after the 1865 takeover of the C&Y by the GS&WR. The station is the only one of the six Cork railway stations that still exists today.
On 24 February 2012, the station briefly shut due to a gas leak.
On 18 December 2013, the canopy over platforms 1 and 2 collapsed in high winds; there was damage to one train and one person suffered minor injuries. In February 2014, €2.8 million was allocated to repair the canopy.
Planning permission was granted by Cork City Council in July 2013 for a new entrance building onto Horgan's Quay and a new bi-directional road linking Railway Street/Alfred Street and Horgan's Quay; the plan also included bus shelters, a car park with 140 spaces and a set-down area accessed from Horgan's Quay for taxis and buses. In February 2014, €3 million was allocated towards implementing phase one including site works and detailed planning. Work began in summer 2014.
In September 2014, Irish Rail submitted a new application for two rather than one entrance building onto the quayside. Planning permission was granted, and Irish Rail put the entrance building project out to tender in early 2015. Construction commenced in summer 2015, and was expected to complete in approximately 12 months. However, works took longer and the entrances were officially opened in November 2017. In parallel, a new road project (for use by buses), commenced in early 2016 with its opening coinciding with the completion of the entrance building contract in November 2017. Bus Éireann now carries passengers from the new entrance to the city centre and beyond.
Engine no. 36
An old steam locomotive has been on permanent display at the station since 1950. "Engine No. 36" dates from 1847 and is on display on a viewing platform in the booking hall. It was restored and moved to its current position by Iarnród Éireann in 2007.
Originally built by Bury, Curtis, and Kennedy of Liverpool at a cost of £1,955, the engine was obtained by the Great Southern and Western Railway to run services from Dublin to Cork, it has a 2-2-2 wheel arrangement, and remained in service until 1874. The engine was displayed at the Cork International Exhibition in 1902, the Railway Centenary Exhibition in 1925, and the bi-centenary of the Royal Dublin Society at Ballsbridge in 1930.
The station offers direct intercity rail services to Heuston Station and stations in Kerry such as Killarney, Farranfore (for Kerry Airport) and Tralee. Cork Suburban Rail services follow the Cobh and Mallow lines. Since July 2009, a commuter line also operates to Midleton.
The station has three terminating platforms, numbered 1 to 3 (in the Cobh direction), and two through platforms, numbered 4 and 5; the only platform not directly accessible from the station concourse, platform 5, is accessed through a subway, unlike most other Irish stations, which use footbridges. Until the mid-1990s, the through platforms were numbered 5 and 6, as there had been a fourth terminating platform adjacent to platform 3; it was removed in 1984.
Since December 2005's timetable change, the through platforms tend to get quite congested as commuter trains often come in together, clogging up limited space. Since the reopening of the Cork & Youghal Railway as far as Midleton, increased use has been made of the terminating platforms 1 to 3. There is also a loop line behind platform 5, which used to be used to facilitate moving locomotives from the end of arriving trains to the other end in preparation for departure; this line used to be a double tracked freight avoiding line that enabled goods trains to bypass the passenger station. It is no longer necessary since all services to the station are operated either by railcars or by Mark 4 sets with a driving van trailer.
In 2017, the Cork to Dublin reached record usage of 3.15 million passengers, up 6.5% from 2016.
As of May 2017, three Bus Éireann services use Kent Station as a terminus:
- 205: Kent Station – Cork City Centre – University College Cork – Cork Institute of Technology
- 226: Kent Station – Parnell Place Bus Station – Cork Airport – Kinsale
- 226A: Kent Station – Parnell Place Bus Station – Cork Airport
Some other Bus Éireann services use a stop across from the station on Lower Glanmire Road, which is listed on timetables as "Lwr Glanmire Rd (Opp Kent Station)"; these include:
- 241: Parnell Place Bus Station – Midleton – Whitegate – Trabolgan Holiday Village
- 260: Parnell Place Bus Station – Youghal – Ardmore
Parnell Place Bus Station is approximately a 750m walk from Kent Station.
- "Kent station" (PDF). Railscot - Irish Railways. Retrieved 31 August 2007.
- "Kent Station reopens after gas leak fears". RTÉ News. 24 February 2012. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
- Ryan, Nicky; Christine Bohan. "Updated: Cork train station reopens after roof collapse". TheJournal.ie. Retrieved 22 December 2013.
- "Investigation Report 2014-R005" (PDF). Railway Accident Investigation Unit. 7 November 2014. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
- "CORK'S KENT STATION ALLOCATED €3 MILLION FOR ROOF REPAIRS – MINISTER KELLY". Department of Transport, Tourism and Sport (Press release). 12 February 2014.
- "Planning application details ref: 1335599". Cork City Council. 16 June 2013. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
- English, Eoin (20 February 2014). "Kent station revamp part of €8.5m public transport plan". Irish Examiner.
- "Planning application details ref: 1436130". Cork City Council. 30 October 2014. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
- "Facelift planned for Cork's Kent Station". Irish Examiner. 2 September 2014.
- "WORK ON NEW-LOOK KENT STATION TO BEGIN IN JULY". Evening Echo. 17 June 2015. Archived from the original on 15 October 2015.
- "€10m revamp for Cork's Kent station unveiled". Irish Examiner. 27 November 2017. Retrieved 30 November 2017.
- Healy, Alan (10 November 2017). "Horgan's Quay entrance to Kent Station ready to open". Evening Echo.
- Roche, Barry (16 February 2015). "€3m Cork railway station upgrade set to in crease numbers using mainline and commuter services". The Irish Times.
- "NEW KENT STATION ENTRANCE ON SCHEDULE". Evening Echo. 23 January 2017. Archived from the original on 2 February 2017.
- "Engine No. 36". Iarnród Éireann (display board at Cork Kent Station).
- O'Brien, Ciara (30 July 2009). "Cork-Midleton rail line opens". The Irish Times.
- "Record number of passengers used Cork to Dublin rail line in 2017". 27 January 2018.
- "Route 205" (PDF). Bus Éireann. 30 August 2015. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
- "Route 226/226A" (PDF). Bus Éireann. 25 September 2016. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
- "Route 241" (PDF). Bus Éireann. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
- "Route 260" (PDF). Bus Éireann. 24 October 2016. Retrieved 6 May 2017.
|Preceding station||Iarnród Éireann||Following station|
Dublin-Cork Main Line