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Lincoln railway station - Wikipedia

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Lincoln railway station (previously Lincoln Central) serves the city of Lincoln in Lincolnshire, England. The station is owned by Network Rail and managed by East Midlands Railway. East Midlands Railway provides the majority of services from the station, with other services being provided by Northern and London North Eastern Railway.

The station is part of the PlusBus scheme, where train and bus tickets can be bought together at a saving. Lincoln Central bus station, the city's main bus station, is within a couple of minutes' walk from the railway station and is located to the north-east of the station and easily accessed via a pedestrian crossing and pedestrianised plaza.


The station buildings were designed by John Henry Taylor of London in 1848, for the Great Northern Railway company. It is built in a Tudor revival style of yellow brick, with stone dressings and slate roofs, with 6 ridge and 8 side wall stacks. The buildings and footbridge were Grade II listed in 1990.[1]

The station has been the only station in Lincoln since the closure of Lincoln St. Marks in 1985.[2] Like Rotherham Central, the station retained its "Central" suffix for a number of years following St Marks' closure, but since 2019 has been formally known as Lincoln.[3] The station's "welcome" message, recorded by East Midlands Trains, refers to the station as Lincoln Central.[4]

In late-2010, East Midlands Trains announced that it intended to develop an improved customer service area and improve the café and toilets.[5]


From 1934 the LNER station master took on the responsibility for St Marks LMS station[6]

Platform layout and services[edit]


The station has a total of 5 platforms, numbered 1-5:

The station is also home to an East Midlands Railway train crew depot; trains are stabled overnight in any or all of the platforms as operationally convenient.


Train services at Lincoln are operated by East Midlands Railway, Northern Trains and London North Eastern Railway.

Services at the station are as follows:

East Midlands Railway

East Midlands Railway operate the majority of services at Lincoln. Off-peak, they operate an hourly service to Leicester via Nottingham and an hourly service to Peterborough via Sleaford. There are also trains every 2 hours between Newark North Gate and Grimsby Town with 1 train per day continuing to/from Cleethorpes. East Midlands Railway also operate 5 trains per day to Doncaster as well as a single daily service to London St Pancras International.[15]

On Sundays, the service to Leicester runs only as far as Nottingham and there is no service to Peterborough, Doncaster or London. In the Summer months, there are 3 trains per day between Newark and Cleethorpes but no service on this route in the winter.

Northern Trains

Northern Trains operate an hourly service to Leeds as part of their Northern Connect network. This service calls at all stations to Worksop before running non-stop to Sheffield and continuing to Leeds.[16]

On Sundays, this service runs to Huddersfield instead of Leeds and calls at all stations between Worksop and Sheffield.

London North Eastern Railway

London North Eastern Railway operate direct services every 2 hours to London King's Cross via the East Coast Main Line. These services do not operate on Sundays.[17]

Types of trains[edit]

Charter service in Lincoln Central

Development Work[edit]


The old layout and signalling, seen in 1977

View of the station in August 2007 showing the then recently relaid track

Network Rail instituted a major resignalling scheme for Lincoln during the years 2007-2008 which saw:

As a direct result, terminating trains no longer need to shunt from one side of the station to the other to take up their return workings, reducing turnaround times for terminating trains and improve train service punctuality and reliability.

As part of the overall scheme, Lincoln's platforms have been renumbered from 3-7 to 1-5: (the current platform 1 was previously platform 3, 2 was 4 etc.)

The ornate main entrance at Lincoln station.

All four existing signal boxes - High Street, East Holmes, West Holmes and Pelham Street Junction - were closed and replaced by a new state of the art signalling centre near the West Holmes box. Pelham Street and West Holmes boxes were demolished, but the High Street and East Holmes boxes are listed buildings and are preserved.

Current and future development[edit]

Lincoln is included in the Lincoln Transport Hub redevelopment scheme, with aims to improve connectivity between bus and rail services in Lincoln by the construction of a new bus station adjacent to the railway station, alongside improvements to the railway station itself, including a new pedestrianised plaza outside the main entrance on St Mary's Street. Construction of the Transport Hub commenced in August 2016 and was completed in January 2018.[19]

There are also plans for improvements to the railway station itself, alongside the construction of a new footbridge over the railway line from Tentercroft Street into the city centre to increase the connectivity of the city centre on foot and by cycle.[citation needed]

In addition to this, there is currently construction of a coffee shop within the station premises.

Future services[edit]

For many years, Lincoln had not been served with a direct rail service to London. However, the awarding of two new rail franchises saw this remedied.

On 14 August 2007, it was announced that National Express East Coast (NXEC) would take over the InterCity East Coast franchise in December 2007. As part of the commitment, NXEC planned to introduce a two-hourly service between Lincoln and London King's Cross, starting in 2009. This service would have alternated with a two-hourly service to York.[20][21] The InterCity East Coast Franchise was passed to East Coast in November 2009. In late 2009 East Coast along with NetworkRail published details of the ECML proposed new timetable, including the Lincoln-London services. In spring 2010 it was announced that this new service would be cut back. East Coast, citing financial restraints during the credit crunch, announced instead just one direct train in each direction per day, with extra services running only as far as Newark North Gate station, meaning Lincoln passengers will still have to change trains there.[22] On 22 May 2011 East Coast started direct Lincoln-London Kings Cross services, albeit in a much reduced number than they had originally planned. There is one train a day to London leaving Lincoln at 07:30 Monday-Friday and 07:33 on Saturday, there is no East Coast Service to London on a Sunday. The return service leaves London at 19:06 Monday-Friday, 18.08 on Saturday, and 19.08 on Sunday. The operation passed over to Virgin Trains East Coast in early 2015 and as of June 2018 the King's Cross service is now operated by London North Eastern Railway. LNER have started running two-hourly trains between Lincoln and King's Cross.[23]

In addition to the London North Eastern Railway service, East Midlands Railway operate one train per day Monday-Saturday from Lincoln to London St Pancras, with a return journey in the evening.

The new Northern franchise started in April 2016 had service improvements on the Lincoln line - the service frequency to Sheffield & Retford was increased to twice hourly during the week, and to hourly on Sundays in 2019, whilst the Lincoln to Sheffield service was incorporated into Arriva Rail North's Northern Connect regional network and extended to Leeds via Barnsley.[24]

In 2006, open-access operator Renaissance Trains proposed the introduction of a service operating between Cleethorpes and Stratford, which would call at Lincoln, under the name Humber Coast & City Railway to begin in 2008. The service never began operation, and all trace was removed from the Renaissance website in 2009, implying that the service was no longer being pursued.

Nottinghamshire County Council, the Department for Transport and Network Rail are in discussion about various improvements to the line towards Nottingham including a doubling of service.[25]

In April 2019, the new East Midlands Railway franchise was awarded, which included several key improvements for services in Lincoln. These included an increase of London St Pancras to Lincoln services to 2 trains per day, as well as the introduction of hourly services between Doncaster and Peterborough via Lincoln from December 2021 instead of the current hourly Peterborough to Lincoln service and 5 trains per day between Doncaster and Lincoln. Other improvements as part of the new franchise include hourly services will be introduced between Nottingham and Grimsby Town via Lincoln with limited extensions to Cleethorpes, which would be achieved by extended the existing Leicester to Lincoln service to Grimsby Town. The existing Newark North Gate to Grimsby service would instead terminate at Lincoln.[26][27] On 9 May 2019, following the end of the standstill period, Abellio confirmed they planned to extend the Leicester service to Grimsby Town.[26]

Accidents and incidents[edit]


  1. ^ a b Historic England, "Lincoln Station and footbridge and platform building and yard walls (1388752)", National Heritage List for England, retrieved 14 September 2017
  2. ^ Catford, Nick (6 November 2006). "Lincoln St Marks". Disused Stations. Retrieved 24 March 2016.
  3. ^ "Lincoln". National Rail Enquiries. Retrieved 22 October 2019.
  4. ^ Stephen Carlyle-Hearn Announces Welcome to Lincoln Central, retrieved 23 October 2019
  5. ^ "Impact>Station Improvements coming soon" (PDF). East Midlands Trains. September 2010. Retrieved 1 October 2010.[permanent dead link]
  6. ^ "Rail Co-ordination in Lincoln". Nottingham Journal. England. 3 August 1934. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  7. ^ "Mr. F.R. Carter". Lincolnshire Chronicle. England. 24 November 1899. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  8. ^ "Obituary". Sheffield Daily Telegraph. England. 21 January 1905. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  9. ^ "Railway Changes". Yorkshire Post and Leeds Intelligencer. England. 22 August 1921. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  10. ^ "Retiring Stationmaster's Many Posts". Grantham Journal. England. 6 February 1932. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  11. ^ "Lincoln Stationmaster". Leeds Mercury. England. 5 April 1937. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  12. ^ "After only five months…". Lincolnshire Standard and Boston Guardian. England. 26 March 1938. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  13. ^ "Lincoln's New Railway Chief". Boston Guardian. England. 6 May 1938. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  14. ^ "New Stationmaster for Lincoln Eastern". Nottingham Journal. England. 14 April 1949. Retrieved 6 June 2021 - via British Newspaper Archive.
  15. ^ Table 18, 26, 27, 53 National Rail timetable, May 2020
  16. ^ Table 30 National Rail timetable, May 2020
  17. ^ "New Lincoln-London Direct Azuma Trains Launched by LNER". Visit Lincoln. Retrieved 24 January 2021.
  18. ^ "Massive investment for Lincoln's railway this summer". Network Rail. 13 June 2007.[permanent dead link]
  19. ^ "New Bus Station". Lincoln Bus. Lincoln Bus. Retrieved 18 January 2018.
  20. ^ "From Lincoln to London in just two hours with new rail link". Lincolnshire Echo. 15 August 2007.[permanent dead link]
  21. ^ "National Express awarded contract for growth on InterCity East Coast". Department for Transport. 14 August 2007. Archived from the original on 19 December 2007.
  22. ^ "Train times and live updates".
  23. ^ Dyson, Molly (13 May 2019). "LNER to put Azuma trains into operation this week".
  24. ^ "Northern franchise improvements". Archived from the original on 24 July 2019. Retrieved 15 September 2016.
  25. ^ "125MPH TRAINS TO CUT JOURNEY TIMES". Nottingham Evening Post. 12 April 2008.[permanent dead link]
  26. ^ a b Modern Railways June 2019 p.9
  27. ^ East Midlands Franchise Improvements Map Department for Transport; April 2019
  28. ^ Earnshaw, Alan (1990). Trains in Trouble: Vol. 6. Penryn: Atlantic Books. p. 42. ISBN 0-906899-37-0.
  29. ^

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Media related to Lincoln Central railway station at Wikimedia Commons