Leighton Buzzard railway station
Leighton Buzzard railway station serves the Leighton Buzzard and Linslade area of Bedfordshire and nearby parts of Buckinghamshire. Situated in Linslade, the station is 40 miles north west of London Euston and is served by London Northwestern Railway services on the West Coast Main Line; until the 1960s the station was the start of a branch to Dunstable and Luton, with a junction just north of the present station. The station has four platforms. Platforms 1 & 2 serve the fast lines and are used by Virgin Trains services running non-stop to/from London Euston. Platforms 3 & 4 are served by slower London Northwestern railway services to/from London Euston and by Southern services between East Croydon and Milton Keynes Central. Page's Park railway station, terminus for the Leighton Buzzard Light Railway, is on the opposite side of the town; the first station known as Leighton was opened by the London and Birmingham Railway on 9 April 1838 as part of the first section of its line from London Euston to Denbigh Hall.
The line had been planned to pass through Buckingham but opposition from the Duke of Buckingham ensured that it forced east through Linslade. A station with two-facing platforms was opened a ¼-mile south of the Linslade tunnels; these are arranged unusually for a four track main line: the southbound slow line has a tunnel to itself as does the northbound fast line, however the northbound slow and southbound fast lines share a tunnel. This stems from the fact that the line was built as double-track and when quadrupled, the two extra lines could only be placed along both sides, as single-track tunnels. In May 1848, the station became a junction; the London and North Western Railway replaced the first station in February 1859 by another more permanent structure located 8 chains to the south. The new building had an imposing frontage featuring arched windows. Access to the Dunstable branch was controlled by Leighton No. 2 signal box situated to the north of the station, while the actual branch signals were controlled by the main line box to the south.
In 1874, land was purchased to the south of the station alongside the Dunstable branch for the construction of goods sidings, which became known as Wing Yard. The LNWR was absorbed by the London and Scottish Railway in the 1923 railway grouping and, in 1927, it added a crossover between the fast and slow lines; this was to play a significant role in the derailment of Royal Scot No. 6114 "Coldstream Guardsman" at Linslade on 22 March 1931 when the driver took the crossover at 50–60 mph instead of the regulation 15 mph. There had been a diversion in place on the fast lines and the driver had missed the warning signals; the engine overturned and six people were killed including the driver and fireman. The Scotland amateur football team remained unscathed. In 1957-8 the platform buildings were rebuilt and a concrete awning placed over the platform. At the entrance a larger booking / waiting hall, central heating, electric lighting and the cycle storage and loading bay were improved; the Great Train Robbery of 1963 occurred just south of this station, at Bridego Bridge near Ledburn, at a bridge on the southbound stretch towards Cheddington.
Wing Yard was closed in February 1967 and it is now used as a car park, while the branch to Dunstable was closed from June. In 1989, the platforms were lengthened to accommodate 12-coach trains and a £1.8m project to rebuild the station was started. The London and North Western Railway opened a small motive power depot at the south end of the station in 1859; this closed 5 November 1962 and was demolished. The station is served by London Northwestern Railway and Southern, is managed by West Midland Trains. Southbound, three London Northwestern Railway trains depart per hour on weekdays, one of which runs non-stop to London. Additionally, one Southern train per hour runs to East Croydon. Northbound, two trains an hour run to Milton Keynes Central, one from London Northwestern Railway and the other from Southern, one train per hour to Northampton and two trains an hour to Birmingham New Street. There is one train on weekdays to and from Crewe and some services to/from Crewe on Sundays. Leighton Buzzard station is served by several local buses.
The F70 bus route, operated by Arriva, provides a direct Bus rapid transit service to Luton via the Luton to Dunstable Busway, with an onward connection to Luton Airport. There have been past proposals about reopening the route to Luton when little of it had been lost to new construction, as either a rail link or as a guided busway. Although there is now a guided busway between Dunstable and Luton, much of the Leighton Buzzard to Dunstable section was lost to the Leighton Buzzard Southern Bypass. On 22 March 1931, a passenger train was derailed due to excessive speed through a crossover. Six people were killed; the station played host to a tragic event on 11 April 2011 when a 43-year-old woman named Rachel James, from Uxbridge, kissed an elderly passenger aboard the 16.25 Northampton to London Euston service, approaching the station from the north, set fire to herself within the confines of a train toilet with a can of explosive gas. The train stopped at the station and the passengers were evacuated.
The unusual suicide method caused great distress to the passengers and closed the West Coast Main Line for several hours whilst emergency services attended to the fire. Butt, R. V. J.. The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt and stopping place and present. Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 978-1-85260-508-7. OCLC 60251199. Clinker, C. R
Northamptonshire, archaically known as the County of Northampton, is a county in the East Midlands of England. In 2015 it had a population of 723,000; the county is administered by Northamptonshire County Council and by seven non-metropolitan district councils. It is known as "The Rose of the Shires". Covering an area of 2,364 square kilometres, Northamptonshire is landlocked between eight other counties: Warwickshire to the west and Rutland to the north, Cambridgeshire to the east, Bedfordshire to the south-east, Buckinghamshire to the south, Oxfordshire to the south-west and Lincolnshire to the north-east – England's shortest administrative county boundary at 19 metres. Northamptonshire is the southernmost county in the East Midlands region. Apart from the county town of Northampton, other major population centres include Kettering, Wellingborough and Daventry. Northamptonshire's county flower is the cowslip. Much of Northamptonshire's countryside appears to have remained somewhat intractable with regards to early human occupation, resulting in an sparse population and few finds from the Palaeolithic and Neolithic periods.
In about 500 BC the Iron Age was introduced into the area by a continental people in the form of the Hallstatt culture, over the next century a series of hill-forts were constructed at Arbury Camp, Rainsborough camp, Borough Hill, Castle Dykes, Guilsborough and most notably of all, Hunsbury Hill. There are two more possible hill-forts at Arbury Thenford. In the 1st century BC, most of what became Northamptonshire became part of the territory of the Catuvellauni, a Belgic tribe, the Northamptonshire area forming their most northerly possession; the Catuvellauni were in turn conquered by the Romans in 43 AD. The Roman road of Watling Street passed through the county, an important Roman settlement, stood on the site of modern-day Towcester. There were other Roman settlements at Northampton and along the Nene Valley near Raunds. A large fort was built at Longthorpe. After the Romans left, the area became part of the Anglo-Saxon kingdom of Mercia, Northampton functioned as an administrative centre.
The Mercians converted to Christianity in 654 AD with the death of the pagan king Penda. From about 889 the area was conquered by the Danes and became part of the Danelaw – with Watling Street serving as the boundary – until being recaptured by the English under the Wessex king Edward the Elder, son of Alfred the Great, in 917. Northamptonshire was conquered again in 940, this time by the Vikings of York, who devastated the area, only for the county to be retaken by the English in 942, it is one of the few counties in England to have both Saxon and Danish town-names and settlements. The county was first recorded as Hamtunscire: the scire of Hamtun; the "North" was added to distinguish Northampton from the other important Hamtun further south: Southampton – though the origins of the two names are in fact different. Rockingham Castle was built for William the Conqueror and was used as a Royal fortress until Elizabethan times. In 1460, during the Wars of the Roses, the Battle of Northampton took place and King Henry VI was captured.
The now-ruined Fotheringhay Castle was used to imprison Queen of Scots, before her execution. George Washington, the first President of the United States of America, was born into the Washington family who had migrated to America from Northamptonshire in 1656. George Washington's ancestor, Lawrence Washington, was Mayor of Northampton on several occasions and it was he who bought Sulgrave Manor from Henry VIII in 1539, it was George Washington's great-grandfather, John Washington, who emigrated in 1656 from Northants to Virginia. Before Washington's ancestors moved to Sulgrave, they lived in Lancashire. During the English Civil War, Northamptonshire supported the Parliamentarian cause, the Royalist forces suffered a crushing defeat at the Battle of Naseby in 1645 in the north of the county. King Charles I was imprisoned at Holdenby House in 1647. In 1823 Northamptonshire was said to " a pure and wholesome air" because of its dryness and distance from the sea, its livestock were celebrated: "Horned cattle, other animals, are fed to extraordinary sizes: and many horses of the large black breed are reared."Nine years the county was described as "a county enjoying the reputation of being one of the healthiest and pleasantest parts of England" although the towns were "of small importance" with the exceptions of Peterborough and Northampton.
In summer, the county hosted "a great number of wealthy families... country seats and villas are to be seen at every step." Northamptonshire is still referred to as the county of "spires and squires" because of the numbers of stately homes and ancient churches. In the 18th and 19th centuries, parts of Northamptonshire and the surrounding area became industrialised; the local specialisation was shoemaking and the leather industry and by the end of the 19th century it was definitively the boot and shoe making capital of the world. In the north of the county a large ironstone quarrying industry developed from 1850. Prior to 1901 the ancient hundreds were disused. Northamptonshire was administered as four major divisions: Northern, Eastern and Southern. During the 1930s, the town of Corby was established as a major centre of the steel industry. Much of Northamptonshire remains rural. Corby was designated a new town in 1950 and Northampton followed in 1968; as of 2005 the government is encouraging d
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
Stewartby railway station
Stewartby railway station is a station on the London Northwestern Railway, which serves the Bedfordshire village of Stewartby in England. It is the nearest station to the Marston Vale Millennium Country Park. Stewartby station, in common with others on the Marston Vale Line, is covered by the Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership, which aims to increase use of the line by involving local people. An hourly service runs in each direction Monday to Saturday; when first opened in 1905 by the London and North Western Railway, the station was a halt serving the small village of Wootton Pillinge, a rural community that, in 1897, had become the site of B. J. H. Forder's brickworks; the plant was served by sidings close to and alongside the halt which were controlled by a signal box. By 1910, the Wootton Pillinge Brick Company was selling 48 million bricks per year and in 1923, it merged with the London Brick Company; the brickworks developed across the railway line and as the wagon capacity of the old sidings was exceeded, they became an extension for a larger group of sidings developing at Wootton Broadmead.
The Wootton Pillinge signal box was closed and a new box was opened called "Forder's Sidings" which controlled heavy movements from the works. In 1926 the LBC began to build a "garden village" for its employees at Wootton Pillinge. Following the building of the village, the London and Scottish Railway renamed the station to Stewartby; the Stewartby brickworks was connected to the Marston Vale Line via a 2 ft 11 in narrow gauge railway operating on overhead electrification. This is believed to have been installed in the 1930s and lasted until 1960. After reaching a peak production level of 738 million bricks in 1973, demand for bricks declined and the LBC signed an agreement the following year to re-use its empty clay pits as landfill transported from London. One or two daily container trains began transporting 1,000 tons of waste from Hendon to handling facilities at Stewartby. Simpson, Bill. Oxford to Cambridge Railway. 2. Poole: Oxford Publishing Co. ISBN 0-86093-121-8. Simpson, Bill; the Oxford to Cambridge Railway: Forty Years On 1960-2000.
Witney: Lamplight Publications. ISBN 1-899246-05-3. Train times and station information for Stewartby railway station from National Rail
Birmingham New Street railway station
Birmingham New Street is the largest and busiest of the three main railway stations in the Birmingham City Centre, England. It is a central hub of the British railway system, it is a major destination for Virgin Trains services from London Euston, Glasgow Central and Edinburgh Waverley via the West Coast Main Line, the national hub of the CrossCountry network – the most extensive in Britain, with long-distance trains serving destinations from Aberdeen to Penzance. It is a major hub for local and suburban services within the West Midlands, including those on the Cross City Line between Lichfield Trent Valley and Bromsgrove, the Chase Line to Walsall and Rugeley Trent Valley; the station is named after New Street, which runs parallel to the station, although the station has never had a direct entrance to New Street except via the Grand Central shopping centre. The main entrance to the station was on Stephenson Street, just off New Street. Today the station has entrances on Stephenson Street, Smallbrook Queensway, Hill Street and Navigation Street.
New Street is the sixth busiest railway station in the UK and the busiest outside London, with 43.7 million passenger entries and exits between April 2017 and March 2018. It is the busiest interchange station outside London, with nearly 6.8 million passengers changing trains at the station annually. In 2018 New Street had a passenger satisfaction rating of 92%, the third highest in the UK; the original New Street station opened in 1854. At the time of its construction, the station had the largest single-span arched roof in the world, In the 1960s, the station was rebuilt. An enclosed station, with buildings over most of its span and passenger numbers more than twice those it was designed for, the replacement was not popular with its users. A £550m redevelopment of the station named Gateway Plus opened in September 2015, it includes a new concourse, a new exterior facade, a new entrance on Stephenson Street. Around 80% of train services to Birmingham go through New Street; the other major city-centre stations in Birmingham are Birmingham Moor Street and Birmingham Snow Hill.
Outside Birmingham, in Solihull, is Birmingham International, which serves Birmingham Airport and the National Exhibition Centre. Since 30 May 2016, New Street has been served by the West Midlands Metro tram line, when the adjacent Grand Central tram stop opened outside the station's main entrance on Stephenson Street as the new terminus of Line 1, following the opening of the city-centre extension from Birmingham Snow Hill. New Street station was built by the London and North Western Railway between 1846 and 1854. Samuel Carter, solicitor to both LNWR and the Midland Railway, managed the conveyancing, it was built in the centre of Birmingham, replacing several earlier rail termini on the outskirts of the centre, most notably Curzon Street, which had opened in 1838, was no longer adequate for the level of traffic. Until 1885 the LNWR shared the station with the Midland. However, in 1885 the Midland Railway opened its own extension alongside the original station for the exclusive use of its trains creating two stations side-by-side.
The two companies stations were separated by a central roadway. Traffic grew and by 1900 New Street had an average of 40 trains an hour departing and arriving, rising to 53 trains in the peak hours; the London and North Western Railway had obtained an Act of Parliament in 1846, to extend their line into the centre of Birmingham, which involved the acquisition of some 1.2 hectares of land, the demolition of 70 or so houses in Peck Lane, The Froggery, Queen Street, Colmore Street. The Countess of Huntingdon's Connexion chapel, on the corner of Peck Lane and Dudley Street, which had only been built six years before, was demolished; the station was formally opened on 1 June 1854, although the uncompleted station had been in use for two years as a terminus for trains from the Stour Valley Line, which entered the station from the Wolverhampton direction. On the formal opening day, the LNWR's Curzon Street station was closed to regular passenger services, trains from the London direction started using New Street.
The station was constructed by Messrs. Fox, Henderson & Co. and designed by Edward Alfred Cowper of that firm, who had worked on the design of The Crystal Palace. When completed, it had the largest arched single-span iron and glass roof in the world, spanning a width of 211 feet and being 840 ft long, it held this title for 14 years until St Pancras station opened in 1868. It was intended to have three spans, supported by columns, however it was soon realised that the supporting columns would restrict the workings of the railway. Cowper's single-span design, was therefore adopted though it was some 62 feet wider than the widest roof span at that time. George Gilbert Scott praised Cowper's roof at New Street, stating “An iron roof in its most normal condition is too spider-like a structure to be handsome, but with a little attention this defect is obviated; the most wonderful specimen is that at the great Birmingham Station... ” When first opened, New Street was described as the "Grand Central Station at Birmingham".
The internal layout of tracks and platforms was designed by Robert Stephenson and his assistants. The main entrance building on Stephenson Street incorporated Queen's Hotel, designed by John William Livock, opened on the same day; the Queen's Hotel was built in an Italianate style and was provided with 60 rooms. The hotel was expanded several times over the years, reached its final form in 1917 with t
Bletchley railway station
Bletchley is a railway station that serves the southern parts of Milton Keynes and the north-eastern parts of the Buckinghamshire district of Aylesbury Vale. It is 47 miles northwest of Euston, about 32 miles east of Oxford and 17 miles west of Bedford, it includes junctions of the West Coast Main Line with the Bletchley-Bedford Marston Vale Line and the disused Bletchley-Oxford Varsity line. This is one of the six railway stations serving the Milton Keynes urban area, it is the nearest main line station for Bletchley Park, the World War II codebreaking centre, serves Stadium MK, the home of Milton Keynes Dons F. C. at present a 30-minute walk. Fenny Stratford station, on the Marston Vale Line is closer; the London and Birmingham Railway, now part of the "West Coast Main Line", was opened from Euston as far as Denbigh Hall on 9 April 1838, where a temporary station was built. The line was opened in September 1838, there seemed no apparent need for a station in the Bletchley area at all, it was not until 1846 that Bletchley station was built following the opening of the line from Bedford.
A major intercity station, that role passed to Milton Keynes Central in 1982 when the latter was built, long after the east–west route had been downgraded, taking Bletchley's importance as a junction with it. Today, no Virgin Trains stop at Bletchley; the eastward route opened in 1846, the first station at Bletchley was built. The westward route opened in 1850; this east–west route subsequently became the Oxford – Cambridge "Varsity Line". On 14 October 1939, an express passenger train was in a collision with another train. Five people were killed and more than 30 were injured. There are six platforms in use here. Platforms 1 and 2 serve the fast lines used by Virgin West Coast expresses that do not stop here and normally see little or no use, they are only used if the slow lines are out of service for engineering work or other exceptional events. Platforms 3 and 4 serve the slow lines and are used by London Northwestern Railway services between Euston and Northampton and Birmingham New Street, along with Southern's Milton Keynes Central to East Croydon trains.
Platforms 5 and 6 are located on the eastern side and are the only ones that give access to the Marston Vale line to Bedford. Bedford trains start and terminate in platform 6, but can use platform 5 if required. There are carriage sidings to the north of the station, whilst the high level flyover carrying the former Varsity Line towards Oxford crosses the main lines to the south; the main buildings and station entrance are located on the west side of the complex, off Sherwood Drive. There are ticket barriers controlling access to the platforms; as well as being on the national north–south West Coast Main Line, Bletchley is on the east–west former Cambridge–Oxford Varsity line, though as of November 2018 only the central section, the Marston Vale line, between Bletchley and Bedford and the section between Oxford and Bicester Village are open for passenger services. Bletchley, in common with other stations on this line, is covered by the Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership, which aims to promote the line by encouraging local users to take an active interest in it.
As of 2018, the route of the beyond Bletchley to the west through Winslow to Bicester is closed. The high level crossing over the WCML named the "Bletchley Flyover" and comprising seven 56 ft spans and built in 1959 as part of the British Rail Modernisation Plan, by-passes Bletchley station. At the time it was expected to carry as many as 80 trains a day and though it remains in place it is not in use. There is a funded, plan to re-open this route to passenger traffic via Bicester to Oxford by 2025 and an unfunded plan to re-open the entire route between Oxford and Cambridge. In the view of Milton Keynes Council, a key element of the plan is to build high level platforms at Bletchley so that passengers may transfer between the lines; as part of a project to regenerate Bletchley as a whole, Milton Keynes Council has proposed the creation of a new eastern pedestrian access to the station by extending the existing platform overbridge across the tracks to reach Saxon Street. The proposed eastern entrance is to open out into a new station square and a transport interchange where an at-grade pedestrian crossing across Saxon Street would give access to the town centre and bus station.
In the longer term it is planned to construct an underground concourse to link the eastern and western station entrances. Following approval on 29 November 2011 of the western section of East West Rail between Oxford and Bedford via Bletchley, the route was expected to open in 2019; the plan provides for new high level platforms to be built on the flyover as the line has no direct route through the existing station without reversing. On 7 July 2014, the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership announced that the Government had allocated £64.6 million funding for various projects that includes a £1.5 million contribution towards the cost of this work. However, as of October 2018, work on the high-level platforms or the Saxon Street entrance had yet to begin. In July 2017, Network Rail began a public consultation on the details of its proposals for the Bicester–Bedford section of East West Rail; the consultation documents provide detailed drawings for the high-level platforms but do not include any details about the station itself.
Bedford railway station
Bedford railway station is the larger of two railway stations in the town of Bedford in Bedfordshire, England. It is on the Midland main line from London St Pancras to the East Midlands and the terminus of the Marston Vale line from Bletchley through Bedford St Johns; the original station was built by the Midland Railway in 1859 on its line to the Great Northern at Hitchin. It was on land known as "Freemen's Common" 200 yards south of the current station on Ashburnham Road; the London & North Western Railway had a station on its line between Bletchley and Cambridge. The Midland crossed it on the level and there was a serious collision when an LNWR train passed a red signal.. Following this accident, the Midland built a flyover in 1885; the extension to St Pancras opened in 1868. The connection to Hitchin ceased public services during 1961, but the line north of Bedford to Wigston Junction is still referred to as the Leicester to Hitchin line. At this time the station was altered, with the replacement of a level crossing by the Queen's Park overbridge.
In 1890 fast lines were added to the west to allow expresses to bypass the station. Serious damage occurred during World War II; the current station was built to replace it and was opened by Sir Peter Parker on 9 October 1978. The station was moved about 110 yards north. Although the intention was for what remained of the old awnings to be transferred to the Midland Railway at Butterley in Derbyshire it proved impossible to save them. Nothing remains of the original station buildings. Services over the Marston Vale line to/from Bletchley were transferred here from the old LNWR St Johns station in May 1984. A new connection, which runs along the formation used by the abandoned line to Hitchin, was laid from the Marston Vale branch up to the main line to permit this; the original St Johns station closed on 14 May 1984 with a replacement halt on the new chord opening the same day. Bletchley trains henceforth used a bay platform on the eastern side of the station and still do currently; the track layout around the station is set for significant changes as Network Rail aims to make operations easier and faster, in conjunction with electrification northward to Sheffield and westward to Bletchley and Oxford.
The majority of the work will be north of the station. The station is managed by Thameslink. East Midlands Trains London Northwestern Railway ThameslinkEast Midlands Trains semi-fast services along the Midland Main Line between London St Pancras and Nottingham call at the station, as do London-Corby services; these services use Class 222 Meridian diesel-electric multiple units. Morning and evening peaks see some Nottingham services extended to Lincoln via Newark Castle and Corby services extended to Melton Mowbray, plus some Derby and Sheffield services calling; the weekend sees trains operating in the summer months these extend to/from Scarborough. The station is the northern terminus of Thameslink who operate Thameslink route services to Brighton through St Albans and London St Pancras. Services from the station call at Luton Airport Parkway and Gatwick Airport. Additional services terminate at Gatwick Airport or Three Bridges; these services use Class 700 electric multiple units. Thameslink runs a few services a day to Sutton on the Sutton Loop line, via both Wimbledon and Mitcham Junction.
London Northwestern Railway operates local services to Bletchley via the Marston Vale Line using Class 150 Sprinter and Class 153 Super Sprinter diesel multiple units. There is no Sunday service on this line; the typical off-peak service in trains per hour is: 2tph to Brighton via Gatwick Airport 2tph to Gatwick Airport via Redhill 2tph to London St Pancras International 1tph to Corby 1tph to Nottingham via Leicester 1tph to Bletchley In common with other stations on the Bedford to Bletchley Marston Vale line, Bedford station is covered by the Marston Vale Community Rail Partnership. The partnership aims to increase use of the Marston Vale line by getting local people involved with their local line; the station has the following facilities: 2 waiting rooms Cafe/newsagent/bar and coffee bar Telephones Post box ATM FastTicket machine Toilets Car park with 614 spaces Fully wheelchair accessible Ticket barriersThe station is in the PlusBus scheme, where train and bus tickets can be bought together to save money.
The station will be the eastern terminus for some time of East West Rail, a plan to reopen the railway from Oxford and Aylesbury. As of November 2018, extension to Cambridge and East Anglia via Sandy is planned but not funded. Bedford St Johns railway station Marston Vale Community Rail PartnershipTrain times and station information for Bedford railway station from National Rail