Penzance railway station

Penzance railway station

Infobox UK station
name =Penzance

locale = Penzance
borough = Penwith, Cornwall
latitude = 50.12226
longitude = -5.53223
manager = First Great Western
code = PNZ
platforms = 4
original = West Cornwall Railway
pregroup = Great Western Railway
postgroup = Great Western Railway
years = Opened
events = 1852
usage0203 = 0.392
usage0405 = 0.403
usage0506 = 0.414
usage0607 = 0.462

Penzance railway station serves the town of Penzance, Cornwall, UK. The station is the western terminus of the convert|305.25|mi|km|0 Cornish Main Line from London Paddington. The current journey time to or from London is about five hours.

Platforms 1, 2 and 3 are within the main train shed; Platform 4 on the south side is in the open air. A large stone at the end of this platform welcomes people to Penzance in both English and Cornish. This side of the station is built on the sea wall near the harbour, the other side is cut into the hillside.

It is the southernmost and westernmost station in England, although not Great Britain as some stations in Scotland are further west. The station is operated by First Great Western as is every other station in Cornwall.

This is the Cornish terminus of the Night Riviera sleeper train to and from London Paddington station.

Bus station

The bus station is situated immediately outside the station entrance; this good example of transport integration arising from the Great Western Railway's operation of most of the early bus services in the area. History has come full circle, with the First Group again operating a large number of both the buses and trains in the area.

The Tourism Information Centre is located in the middle of the bus station.

There is also a bus service that connects the railway station with the heliport, from which there are scheduled flights to the Isles of Scilly.


The station was opened by the West Cornwall Railway on 11 March 1852 as the terminus of its line from Redruth. This wooden station was replaced by the current buildings in 1879. Further alterations were made in 1937 and again in 1983 when new a ticket office and buffet were opened. [cite book| last = Bennett| first = Alan| title = The Great Western Railway in West Cornwall| publisher = Runpast Publishing| date = 1988| location = Cheltenham| doi = 1990| id = ISBN 1-870754-12-3 ]

The arch that is blocked up in the wall that retains the hillside behind the platforms was used by the railway as a coal store. Freight traffic, especially the busy fish trade, was handled in a goods yard where the cars are now parked adjacent to the bus station. An engine shed was also situated here before being moved to the opposite side of the line near the end of the retaining wall, but it has since been replaced by the new Penzance TMD outside the station at Long Rock.

Platform usage

At Penzance, certain trains use certain platforms:
*Platform 1 - Main Platform for FGW HST's, FGW Night Riviera
*Platform 2 - Secondary Platform for FGW HST's, Secondary Platform for FGW DMU Local Services
*Platform 3 - CrossCountry Voyagers, Main Platform for FGW DMU Local Services, South West Trains Services
*Platform 4 - CrossCountry Voyagers.

At weekends, Platform 4 is also used by FGW DMU local services. CrossCountry Voyagers sometimes double up on platform 4, one in front of the other, but not coupled up. The one in front runs an earlier service than the one behind; they can also do this once their services have finished for the day and await to depart to Penzance TMD for overnight servicing.

Local DMU services are stored on platform 3, and in the sidings off platform 4 overnight for servicing. This leaves platforms 1, 2 and 4 for early morning intercity services to use, before the local services start.

Passenger volume

Penzance is the second busiest station in Cornwall after Truro. Comparing the year from April 2006 to that which started in April 2002, passenger numbers increased by 18%. [cite web|title =Station Usage| url=|work =Rail Statistics|publisher =Office of Rail Regulation|accessdate = 2008-06-30] The statistics cover twelve month periods that start in April.


Penzance is the terminus of the Cornish Main Line which sees a mixture of local trains to Plymouth and longer distance services to London Paddington station, including the Night Riviera overnight sleeping car service and the Golden Hind which offers an early morning service to London and an evening return. Other fast trains are the mid-morning Cornish Riviera and the afternoon Royal Duchy.

A handful of trains operated by CrossCountry leave Penzance each morning for Scotland and return in the evening.


anti-nextstation=Falmouth Docks convert|60|mi|km|0
clck-nextstation=St Ives convert|41|mi|km|0

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