‘Key destination’: Newcastle station named most popular in North East

Newcastle station welcomed 1.5 million people over the past year.

Newcastle Central Station

Newcastle railway station has been named the busiest station in the North East.

Passenger usage dropped by an incredible 78% during 2020-21, with the lowest number of journeys being made since before 1872 as a result of the pandemic.

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Numbers have been revealed by the Office of Rail and Road’s (ORR) which estimated that Newcastle had 1.5 million passenger entries and exits between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021

The figures underline Newcastle's importance as a key interchange and as a destination at a time when the future of the North East's railway is under the spotlight.

Elsewhere in the North East, Darlington overtook Durham in the rankings, with 537,674 entries and exits to 472,580.

Middlesbrough and Hartlepool made up the rest of the Top 5.

ORR’s stats reveal Stratford railway station in London as the most used station in Britain, recording nearly 14 million entries and exits in 2020-21.

It is the first time in 17 years that London Waterloo is not the most used station.

The London station saw the biggest decrease in passenger usage, with 12.21 million entries and exits compared to the 86 million in 2019-2020.

Feras Alshaker, Director of Planning and Performance at the Office of Rail and Road said: “Throughout 2020-21 the railways remained an essential service for those people who needed to travel during a year which was impacted by the pandemic.

“Newcastle has consistently appeared as one of the most used stations outside of London and it is clear it remained a key destination for many passengers through the pandemic.

“We have seen hundreds of railway stations with very few passenger entries and exits.

"However, we know that recent figures show leisure journeys are nearly back to pre-pandemic levels, and there is a slower increase in commuter journeys.”