National Rail in the United Kingdom is the trading name licensed for use by the Rail Delivery Group, an unincorporated association whose membership consists of the passenger train operating companies of England and Wales. The TOCs run the passenger services provided by the British Railways Board, from 1965 using the brand name British Rail. Northern Ireland, bordered by the Republic of Ireland, has a different system. National Rail services share a ticketing structure and inter-availability that do not extend to services which were not part of British Rail; the name and the accompanying double arrow symbol are trademarks of the Secretary of State for Transport. National Rail should not be confused with Network Rail. National Rail is a brand used to promote passenger railway services, providing some harmonisation for passengers in ticketing, while Network Rail is the organisation which owns and manages most of the fixed assets of the railway network, including tracks and signals; the two coincide where passenger services are run.
Most major Network Rail lines carry freight traffic and some lines are freight only. There are some scheduled passenger services on managed, non-Network Rail lines, for example Heathrow Express, which runs on Network Rail track; the London Underground overlaps with Network Rail in places. Twenty eight owned train operating companies, each franchised for a defined term by government, operate passenger trains on the main rail network in Great Britain; the Rail Delivery Group is the trade association representing the TOCs and provides core services, including the provision of the National Rail Enquiries service. It runs Rail Settlement Plan, which allocates ticket revenue to the various TOCs, Rail Staff Travel, which manages travel facilities for railway staff, it does not compile the national timetable, the joint responsibility of the Office of Rail Regulation and Network Rail. Since the privatisation of British Rail there is no longer a single approach to design on railways in Great Britain; the look and feel of signage and marketing material is the preserve of the individual TOCs.
However, National Rail continues to use BR's famous double-arrow symbol, designed by Gerald Burney of the Design Research Unit. It has been incorporated in the National Rail logotype and is displayed on tickets, the National Rail website and other publicity; the trademark rights to the double arrow symbol remain state-owned, being vested in the Secretary of State for Transport. The double arrow symbol is used to indicate a railway station on British traffic signs; the National Rail logo was introduced by ATOC in 1999, was used on the Great Britain public timetable for the first time in the edition valid from 26 September in that year. Rules for its use are set out in the Corporate Identity Style Guidelines published by the Rail Delivery Group, available on its website. "In 1964 the Design Research Unit—Britain’s first multi-disciplinary design agency founded in 1943 by Misha Black, Milner Gray and Herbert Read—was commissioned to breathe new life into the nation’s neglected railway industry".
The NR title is sometimes described as a "brand". As it was used by British Rail, the single operator before franchising, its use maintains continuity and public familiarity; the lettering used in the National Rail logotype is a modified form of the typeface Sassoon Bold. Some train operating companies continue to use the former British Rail Rail Alphabet lettering to varying degrees in station signage, although its use is no longer universal; the British Rail typefaces of choice from 1965 were Helvetica and Univers, with others coming into use during the sectorisation period after 1983. TOCs may use what they like: examples include Futura, Frutiger, a modified version of Precious by London Midland. Although TOCs compete against each other for franchises, for passengers on routes where more than one TOC operates, the strapline used with the National Rail logo is'Britain's train companies working together'. Several conurbations have their own metro or tram systems, most of which are not part of National Rail.
These include the London Underground, Docklands Light Railway, London Tramlink, Blackpool Tramway, Glasgow Subway, Tyne & Wear Metro, Manchester Metrolink, Sheffield Supertram, Midland Metro and Nottingham Express Transit. On the other hand, the self-contained Merseyrail system is part of the National Rail network, urban rail networks around Birmingham, Cardiff and West Yorkshire consist of National Rail services. London Overground is a hybrid: its services are operated via a concession awarded by Transport for London, are branded accordingly, but until 2010 all its routes used infrastructure owned by Network Rail. LO now possesses some infrastructure in its own right, following the reopening of the former London Underground East London line as the East London Railway. Since all the previous LO routes were operated by National Rail franchise Silverlink until November 2007, they have continued to be shown in the National Rail timetable and are still considered to be a part of National Rail.
Heathrow Express and Eurostar are not part of the National Rail network despite sharing of stations. Northern Ireland Railways were
Exmouth railway station
Exmouth railway station serves the town of Exmouth in Devon, England and is 11.25 miles south east of Exeter St Davids. The station is the terminus of the Avocet Line from Exeter St Davids; the station is managed by Great Western Railway. The railway to Exmouth was opened on 1 May 1861; the first train started from Exeter Station comprising eleven carriages drawn by the engine Comet. The train with its complement of 150 passengers arrived in Exmouth at 8.16am. New docks designed by Eugenius Birch were opened in 1866 and a short branch was laid to connect them to the goods yard. A branch line with a junction beyond the end of the platforms was opened on 1 June 1903; this ran around the outskirts of Exmouth on a long, curving viaduct, passing through Littleham and on to Budleigh Salterton meeting the Sidmouth branch line at Tipton St Johns where it connected with an earlier line to Sidmouth Junction railway station. This route was used for through carriages from London Waterloo station sometimes called the Atlantic Coast Express and a short while from Cleethorpes, which ran via the Somerset and Dorset Joint Railway and Templecombe railway station.
The line was closed to all traffic on 6 March 1967 following publication of the report The Reshaping of British Railways. The original station consisted of a single platform with a track on either side, it was rebuilt with four platform faces, opening on 20 July 1924. An engine shed was provided from the earliest days on the east side of the station, opposite the platforms, it was closed on 8 November 1963 following the introduction of DMU services on the line. The signal box was closed on 10 March 1968 after which only one train was allowed south of Topsham and only one platform of the four-platform station was required; the station building was replaced with the present building. A single face was opened on 2 May 1986; the eastern side of the station was used for a new road which opened on 10 December 1981. Following the privatisation of British Rail the station was operated by Wales & West from 1997 to 2001 and Wessex Trains from 14 October 2001 until 31 March 2006 when operation of the station transferred to Great Western Railway.
There is a single platform -- on the right. The main station entrance leads to the bus station, but when the station is unstaffed another gate leads directly from the platform into a car park, from where access can be had to the bus station and the town centre, it was reported in the Exmouth Journal during December 2005 that Exmouth station could be rebuilt as part of the redevelopment of the surrounding area. The paper printed rough plans of all four provided for a new twin track station; however local opposition to the redevelopment scheme is high in particular because of the planned new supermarket on the estuary waterfront. Exmouth is served by trains on the Avocet Line from Exmouth to Exeter St Davids running every 30 minutes during the day and every hour in the evening. Beyond St Davids they continue to either Paignton or Barnstaple. Connections are available at Exeter Central for services to Axminster, Basingstoke and London Waterloo. Video footage of Exmouth Station in 2016 and 1970
Barnstaple railway station
Barnstaple railway station is the northern terminus of the Tarka Line and serves the town of Barnstaple, Devon. It is 211 miles 25 chains down-line from London Paddington via Exeter St Davids, it is managed by Great Western Railway, which operates the train service. It was known as Barnstaple Junction from 1874 to 1970 as it was the junction between lines to Ilfracombe, Bideford and Exeter. A railway for goods traffic was operated from Fremington Quay, opening in August 1848. On 1 August 1854 the North Devon Railway opened from Barnstaple to Crediton. Trains were extended via Fremington to Bideford on 2 November 1855; this route was extended to loop back to Okehampton via Torrington and Halwill Junction. The North Devon Railway was amalgamated into the London and South Western Railway on 1 January 1865; the station was enlarged and became known as Barnstaple Junction on 20 July 1874 when the railway opened the Ilfracombe branch line. The line crossed the river on a large bridge to a station at Barnstaple Quay which in turn was replaced by Barnstaple Town on an adjacent site in 1898 when the narrow gauge Lynton and Barnstaple Railway was opened.
This station is now a smart school. On 1 June 1887 a loop line was laid to connect the station with the Devon and Somerset Railway taken over by the Great Western Railway, which had opened its own Barnstaple station at Victoria Road as the terminus of the line from Taunton on 1 November 1873; the station was further enlarged in 1924. The station saw a reduction in services from the mid-1960s; the first services to be withdrawn were the passenger trains to Bideford on 2 October 1965. Passenger services had been transferred from Victoria Road in January 1960 and the line to Taunton closed on 3 October 1966. Victoria Road remained open for goods traffic, accessed via the loop line from Barnstaple Junction, until 5 March 1970, when it closed entirely; the line to Ilfracombe was closed that year, on 5 October, so the station became plain Barnstaple once more. On 21 May 1971 the track was simplified and the line to Umberleigh was reduced to just one track. A new booking office was opened on 10 November 1981 but goods trains beyond on the Fremington line were withdrawn on 31 August 1982 leaving the station as a terminus.
In 2006 the bridge that carried Sticklepath Hill across the former Bideford and Ilfracombe lines was demolished to make way for a road junction for the Barnstaple Western Bypass, which opened in May 2007. The roundabout here has been built on a raised platform in order to allow for the reopening of the line to Bideford should this be proved viable in the future. Work from the bypass has included a larger station car park and better bus access – a large number of Barnstaple town services, as well as services to Bideford and South Molton now call at the station. During the year ended March 2009, passengers using Barnstaple station exceeded ¼ million. In 2009 the Association of Train Operating Companies included the Barnstaple to Bideford route in its Connecting Communities: Expanding Access to the Rail Network; this recommended some closed lines ought to be rebuilt to restore a railway service to large communities. This same line was rebuilt for one day that same year using OO gauge track in a television project orchestrated by presenter James May, in attempt to build the longest model railway.
Although the track was restored between the two towns the model railway trains were only able to reach the site of Instow signalbox before failing. May stated. May repeated this experiment in 2011, using Hornby R603 rails laid as double track by a mechanical track layer. A competition saw a British team, led by May, racing three trains from Barnstaple to Bideford, against a German team running the route in the opposite direction. All six trains completed the 10-mile run, with the British team claiming a 2:1 victory; the North Devon Railway opened a motive power depot at the station in 1854. A larger building was erected alongside in 1864 by the South Western Railway; this building was re-roofed by the Southern Railway in the 1940s, but closed by British Railways in 1964 and demolished. The cafe at Barnstaple station was opened in 2008 by Mike Day in one of the'closed' areas of the station building, it appeared in a list of the ten best station cafes published in The Guardian just one year later.
The single platform is on the east of trains arriving from Exeter. There is level access to the station car park; the centre of Barnstaple is reached by crossing the Long Bridge over the River Taw 330 yards from the station. A footpath from the station leads onto the cycleway along the abandoned railway line to Bideford which forms part of the South West Coast Path. Engineers sidings remain just before the terminus, with a run around loop accessed from a ground frame; the connection to the second platform remains however the platform itself is no longer in use. Barnstaple is served by fourteen trains each weekday, fifteen on Saturdays and seven on Sundays in the January 2018 timetable. Most services run to Exmouth; the railway between Exeter and Barnstaple is designated as a community railway and is supported by marketing provided by the Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership. The line is promoted under the "Tarka Line" name. Three pubs at Barnstaple are included in the Tarka Line rail ale trail
West of England line
The West of England line is a British railway line from Basingstoke, Hampshire, to Exeter St David's in Devon, England. Passenger services run between Exeter. Despite its historic title, it is not today's principal route from London to the West of England: Exeter and everywhere further west is reached more from London Paddington via the Reading–Taunton line. At Salisbury, the line intersects with the Wessex Main Line; when all sections had been incorporated into the London and South Western Railway, they consisted of the following: Basingstoke to Salisbury Basingstoke to Andover, opened 3 July 1854 Andover to Salisbury, opened 1 May 1857 Branches: Basingstoke and Alton Light Railway opened June 1901, closed 30 May 1936 From Hurstbourne and Andover to Romsey and on to Eastleigh and Southampton: both closed. Link via Longparish opened 1 June 1885. At Andover, junction with the Midland and South Western Junction Railway to Cheltenham Bulford Camp branch Salisbury to Romsey, with a branch to Bournemouth At Salisbury, the Great Western Railway line from Westbury and Bristol had its own terminus: the L&SWR continued the route southeast towards Southampton.
This route is known nowadays the Wessex Main Line. Between Salisbury and Exeter: Salisbury–Yeovil opened 2 May 1859 Yeovil–Exeter opened 19 July 1860 Branches: To Yeovil Town joint station with the GWR To Chard joint station with the GWR To Lyme Regis from Axminster To Seaton from Seaton Junction To Sidmouth from Sidmouth Junction To Exmouth from Exmouth Junction near ExeterThe line was downgraded by being singled for long sections west of Salisbury by British Rail; this restricts the number of trains on this section, but passing loops have been added to alleviate this problem. Beyond Exeter, the line continued to Plymouth via Okehampton and Tavistock as the Exeter to Plymouth railway of the LSWR; this line is now closed, with the surviving sections downgraded to branch lines. The section from Exeter to Coleford Junction, near Yeoford, is still in existence as part of the Tarka Line; the Dartmoor Railway still exists as a heritage line and industrial line from Coleford Junction to Okehampton, where the track breaks.
Tavistock lacks a rail connection, the final section of the original main line, from Bere Alston, continues to Plymouth as part of the Tamar Valley Line. Trains between London Waterloo and Exeter run on the South Western Main Line as far as Basingstoke; the West of England Line diverges from this line at Worting Junction, a short distance west of Basingstoke. Network Rail splits the line into two sections: the first section from the line's start at Worting Junction to Wilton Junction is classified as "London & SE commuter"; the secondary route west of Salisbury is predominantly single track, but has three sections of double track and four passing loops. The double track sections and passing loops are: a loop just outside Tisbury station,a loop at Gillingham station, double track from Templecombe to Yeovil Junction, a loop at the former Chard Junction station, 3 miles of double track centred on Axminster, a loop at Honiton station, double track from Pinhoe to Exeter; the line's speed limit is 80–90 mph over its whole length from Basingstoke to Exeter.
Speed is further limited around the junctions. The first section to Wilton Junction has a listed line speed of 50–90 mph, the secondary section to Exeter has a line speed of 85 mph with parts at 70 mph. Passenger services are operated by South Western Railway using Class 159 and Class 158 trains, they run half-hourly from London to Salisbury and hourly to Exeter, calling at Clapham Junction and/or Woking and most stations between Basingstoke and Exeter St David's although some smaller stations east of Salisbury and near Exeter have a reduced service. The Network Rail South West Main Line Route Utilisation Strategy recommended building an extended section of double track from Chard Junction to Axminster, plus a passing loop at Whimple. However, Network Rail's Route Plan is silent on the Whimple loop; the Axminster Loop is centred on Axminster station, does not extend to Chard Junction as proposed. The line between Basingstoke and Exeter is not electrified. Exeter to Plymouth railway of the LSWR Southern Railway routes west of Salisbury Network Rail Business Plan 2006: Route 3 – South West Main Line Network Rail Business Plan 2006: Route 4 – Wessex Routes Network Rail Business Plan 2006: Route 12 – Reading to Penzance Ordnance Survey R.
V. J. Butt; the Directory of Railway Stations. Sparkford: Patrick Stephens. ISBN 9781852605087. J. H. Lucking. Railways of Dorset: an outline of their establishment and progress from 1825. Lichfield: Railway Correspondence and Travel Society. OCLC 31916. Johnston, Howard. "Unlocking the potential to Exeter". RAIL. No. 329. EMAP Apex Publications. Pp. 20–24. ISSN 0953-4563. OCLC 49953699
London Waterloo station
Waterloo station known as London Waterloo, is a central London terminus on the National Rail network in the United Kingdom, located in the Waterloo area of the London Borough of Lambeth. It is connected to a London Underground station of the same name and is adjacent to Waterloo East station on the South Eastern main line; the station is the terminus of the South Western main line to Weymouth via Southampton, the West of England main line to Exeter via Salisbury, the Portsmouth Direct line to Portsmouth Harbour and the Isle of Wight, several commuter services around West and South West London, Surrey and Berkshire. Many services stop at Clapham Woking; the station was first opened in 1848 by the London and South Western Railway, replaced the earlier Nine Elms as it was closer to the West End. It was never designed to be a terminus, as the original intention was to continue the line towards the City of London, the station developed in a haphazard fashion leading to difficulty finding the correct platform.
The station was rebuilt in the early 20th century, opening in 1922, included the Victory Arch over the main entrance, which commemorated World War I. Waterloo was the last London terminus to provide steam-powered services, which ended in 1967; the station was the London terminus for Eurostar international trains from 1994 until 2007, when they were transferred to St. Pancras International. Waterloo is the busiest railway station in the UK, it is the country's largest station in terms of floor space and has the greatest number of platforms at 24. When combined with the Underground and Waterloo East stations, it is the busiest station complex in Europe; the station's formal name is London Waterloo, appears as such on all official documentation. It has the station code WAT, it is in the London Borough of Lambeth on the south bank of the River Thames, close to Waterloo Bridge and northeast of Westminster Bridge. The main entrance is to the south of the junction of York Road, it is named after the eponymous bridge, which itself was named after the Battle of Waterloo, a battle that occurred two years prior to the opening ceremony for the bridge.
Several London bus routes, including 1, 4, 26, 59, 68, 171, 176, 188, 507, 521 and RV1 all stop at Waterloo. Some buses call at stops by the side of the station on Waterloo Road, others at Tenison Way, a short distance from the Victory Arch. Waterloo was built by the South Western Railway, it was not designed to be a terminus, but a stop on an extension towards the City. It replaced the earlier Nine Elms, which had opened on 21 May 1838 and connected London to Southampton since 11 May 1840. By the mid-1840s, commuter services to Wandsworth, Kingston upon Thames, Ditton Marsh and Weybridge had become an important part of L&SWR traffic, so the company began to look for a terminus closer to Central London and the West End. An Act of Parliament was granted in 1845 to extend the line towards a site on York Road, close to Waterloo Bridge; the extension past Nine Elms involved demolishing 700 houses, most of it was carried on a brick viaduct to minimise disruption. The longest bridge took the line over Westminster Bridge Road.
The approach to the new station carried four tracks, with the expectation that other companies would use it. The station was designed by William Tite and opened on 11 July 1848 as "Waterloo Bridge Station". Nine Elms closed for regular services at the same time, but Queen Victoria was fond of the privacy afforded by the old station, so it was kept open for her, a replacement private station built on Wandsworth Road in 1854. Waterloo Bridge was laid out as a through station, as it was expected that services would continue towards the City of London; the L&SWR purchased several properties along the route, before the plans were cancelled owing to the financial crisis following the Panic of 1847. In October 1882, Waterloo Bridge station was renamed Waterloo, reflecting long-standing common usage in some L&SWR timetables; the L&SWR's aim throughout much of the 19th century was to extend its main line eastward beyond Waterloo into the City of London. Given this, it was reluctant to construct a dedicated grand terminus at Waterloo.
Waterloo had none of the usual facilities expected of a terminus until 1853, when a small block was built on the far east side of the station. In 1854, the London Necropolis & National Mausoleum Company opened a private station inside Waterloo that provided services to Brookwood Cemetery; the station was demolished and replaced with a dedicated building in 1902, as part of the reconstruction of Waterloo in the early 20th century. Traffic and passengers to Waterloo increased throughout the century, Waterloo was extended in an ad-hoc manner to accommodate this. In 1860, new platforms were added on the northwest side of the station. An additional dock siding of the main station opened on 17 March 1869. A 5-chain link to the South Eastern Railway line from London Bridge to Charing Cross opened in July 1865, it was diverted from London Bridge to Cannon Street on 1 February 1867, before being withdrawn the following year. The SER opened Waterloo Junction station on 1 January 1869 as a replacement, that allowed LSWR passengers to change and access services to Cannon Street.
A further extension on the southeastern side of Waterloo, to provide more services, opened on 16 December 1878. A further extension to the north, beyond the Windsor Station, opened in November 1885. For each extension, the long-term plan was that the expansion was "temporary" until the line was extended past Waterloo, therefore these addi
Great Western Railway (train operating company)
First Greater Western Limited, trading as Great Western Railway, is a British train operating company owned by FirstGroup that operates the Greater Western railway franchise. It manages 197 stations and its trains call at over 270. GWR operates long-distance inter-city services along the Great Western Main Line to and from South West England and South Wales, as well as the Night Riviera sleeper service between London and Penzance, it provides commuter/outer-suburban services from its London terminus at Paddington to West London, the Thames Valley region including parts of Berkshire, parts of Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire. GWR was due to begin operating the Heathrow Express service under a management contract on behalf of Heathrow Airport Holdings from August 2018; the company began operating in February 1996 as Great Western Trains, as part of the privatisation of British Rail. In December 1998 it became First Great Western after FirstGroup bought out its partners' shares in Great Western Holdings.
In April 2006, First Great Western, First Great Western Link and Wessex Trains were combined into the new Greater Western franchise and brought under the First Great Western brand. The company adopted its current name and a new livery in September 2015 to coincide with the start of an extended franchise, due to run until April 2020; as part of the privatisation of British Rail, the Great Western InterCity franchise was awarded by the Director of Passenger Rail Franchising to Great Western Holdings in December 1995 and began operations on 4 February 1996. Great Western Holdings was owned by some former British Rail FirstBus and 3i. In March 1998, FirstGroup bought out its partners' stakes to give it 100% ownership. In December 1998, the franchise was rebranded as First Great Western. On 1 April 2004, First Great Western Link commenced operating the Thames Trains franchise, it operated local train services from Paddington to Slough, Henley-on-Thames, Didcot, Newbury, Worcester, Hereford and Stratford upon Avon.
It operated services from Reading to Gatwick Airport, from Reading to Basingstoke. On 1 April 2006, the Great Western, Great Western Link and Wessex Trains franchises were combined into a new Greater Western franchise. FirstGroup, National Express and Stagecoach were shortlisted to bid for this new franchise. On 13 December 2005, it was announced. First planned to subdivide its services into three categories based on routes. Following feedback from staff and stakeholders, the decision was taken to re-brand and re-livery all services as'First Great Western'. In May 2011, FirstGroup announced that it had decided not to take up the option to extend its franchise beyond the end of March 2013. FirstGroup stated that, in the light of the £1bn plan to electrify the Great Western route from London via Bristol to Cardiff, it wanted to try to negotiate a longer-term deal. CEO Tim O'Toole said: "We believe we are best placed to manage these projects and capture the benefits through a longer-term franchise."By not taking up the option to extend its original franchise contract for a further three years, FirstGroup avoided having to pay £826.6m to the government.
In March 2012 Arriva, FirstGroup, National Express and Stagecoach were shortlisted to bid for the new franchise. The winner was expected to be announced in December 2012, with the new franchisee taking over in April 2013; the ITT ran from the end of July until October 2012. The winner would have been announced in March 2013, taken on the franchise from 21 July 2013 until the end of July 2028; the new franchise would include the introduction of new Intercity Express Trains, capacity enhancements and smart ticketing. The award of the franchise was again delayed in October 2012, while the Department for Transport reviewed the way rail franchises are awarded. In January 2013, the government announced that the current competition for the franchise had been terminated, that FirstGroup's contract had been extended until October 2013. A two-year franchise extension until September 2015 was agreed in October 2013, subsequently extended until March 2019. A further extension to April 2019 was granted in March 2015.
The refurbishment of first class carriages in 2014 included interiors that featured a new GWR logo and no First branding. The whole company was rebranded as Great Western Railway on 20 September 2015 and introduced a green livery in recognition of the former Great Western Railway; the new livery was introduced when HST interiors were refurbished, on sleeper carriages and Class 57/6 locomotives. Great Western Railway is the primary train operator in Devon, Somerset, Berkshire, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire. Great Western Railway operates commuter services between London and destinations such as Slough, Reading, Oxford, Bedwyn, Hereford and Banbury. There are services between Reading and Basingstoke. Trains run on various north-south routes from Cardiff and Worcester to Taunton, Salisbury, Southampton and Brighton. Many of these run via Bristol; the company runs trains on local routes including branch lines in Devon and Cornwall, such as the Looe, Newq
Exeter Central railway station
Exeter Central railway station is the most central of the stations in the city of Exeter, United Kingdom. It is 171 miles 30 chains down the line from London Waterloo; the station is smaller. Great Western Railway manage the station and operate trains on the routes to Barnstaple, Exmouth. South Western Railway run trains between London Waterloo via Exeter Central. From 1860, when it opened by the London and South Western Railway, until 1933, when it was rebuilt, it was known as Exeter Queen Street; the London and South Western Railway opened its Exeter Extension from Yeovil Junction on 19 July 1860 and its station at Queen Street in the city centre became the terminus for services from London Waterloo station. From 1 May 1861 it was the terminus for trains on the new Exeter and Exmouth Railway; this was operated by the LSWR but the physical junction between the two lines was at Exmouth Junction, 1.1 miles east of Queen Street. The final piece of the LSWR's network in Exeter was opened on 1 February 1862 when a steep line descended from the west end of Queen Street station to reach the Bristol and Exeter Railway's station at Exeter St David's, opened in 1844.
Here the LSWR connected with the Exeter and Crediton Railway and over that line reached Plymouth, Padstow and Ilfracombe Most trains to these destinations changed locomotives at Queen Street and many had carriages added or removed too. A locomotive shed was situated at the station but it was replaced by a new maintenance depot at Exmouth Junction in 1887; the space was used for enlarged carriage sidings. The original station had just a single platform with two tracks which were covered by a large train shed. A second platform and train shed was added in 1874 and two sidings were laid to give a total of four tracks between the platforms; the LSWR became a part of the Southern Railway in 1923 and two years the eastbound platform was lengthened from 600 feet to 1,210 feet, taking it beyond the New North Road bridge at the east end of the station. A fire damaged the original wooden buildings on the westbound platform in 1927 and work on rebuilding the station started in 1931; the train sheds were demolished and new brick buildings were opened on 1 July 1933 when the station was renamed'Exeter Central'.
At this time there were four platform tracks – east-facing terminal platforms 1 and 4 and through platforms 2 and 3 – and two additional through lines in the centre of the station. On 1 January 1948 the SR was nationalised to become the Southern Region of British Railways but in 1963 the Southern Region lines west of Salisbury were transferred to the Western Region and by 1967 services from London Waterloo were reduced with few running beyond Exeter St David's; the entrance at the east end of the station from New North Road was closed in 1966. Goods yards had been provided on the north side of the line, both behind the eastbound platform and on the other side of the Queen Street bridge. General goods traffic was withdrawn on 4 December 1967 but cement traffic continued until January 1980; the eastbound through line was taken out of use on 9 November 1969, as was the'down through' on 13 October 1984. On 2 July 1984 the entrance from New North Road was reopened and a new ramped footbridge installed to give direct access from there to the east end of both platforms.
Sectorisation in the 1980s saw Exeter Central become the most westerly station managed by Network SouthEast but it was transferred to Regional Railways sector which operated the services to Exmouth. Privatisation therefore saw it pass to Wales & West and Wessex Trains; the three-track locomotive shed. The original 170-foot shed was extended to 234 feet in 1872 and further modernised facilities were brought into use five years later. Despite these alterations the space was too small to handle all the locomotives working in and out of the station so a new maintenance depot was opened at Exmouth Junction in 1887. A few sidings and the turntable was retained at Queen Street; this turntable was 42 feet long but in 1888 it was replaced by a 50 feet example. In the 1860s there was just a single track to the East but two tracks to the West; the first signal boxes were brought into use in 1875 when three controlled the extensive layout:'Queen Street A' and'Queen Street B' at the east end of the station, with'Queen Street C' situated at the west end between the two platforms.
These signal boxes were all closed in the 1920s. The C box was replaced by a new one at the west end of the eastbound platform on 13 September 1925; the A and B boxes were replaced by a new, larger box on the north side of the line beyond the New North Road bridge on 15 November 1927. This was named'Queen Street A' and the C box was renamed'Queen Street B'; the B box was closed on 23 February 1970 and the A box was renamed just'Exeter Central'. This too closed on 6 May 1985 when control was transferred to the new panel signal box at St David's. With this change came resignalling; the signals are interlocked so that trains cannot start from either St David's or Central until their route is clear right through to their platform at the other station.