Direct London trains restored to Wakefield Kirkgate after 32 years
Grand Central today confirmed the timetable for its new West Riding service that will restore direct trains between Wakefield Kirkgate and London for the first time in over 30 years.
The new West Riding service which will start on the 23rd May will offer three direct Intercity style services a day between Wakefield Kirkgate and London King’s Cross with a fastest journey time to the Capital of 2 hours and 34 minutes. The fastest return journey from London to Wakefield Kirkgate will take 2 hours 11 minutes. The former British Rail service from London to Wakefield Kirkgate, which ended in May 1978, took 2 hours and 51 minutes to complete the journey.
Trains will depart Wakefield Kirkgate for London at the following times on Weekdays: 07:42 (arr 10:06), 11:13 (arr 13:46) and 16:11 (arr 18:46)
Return services direct to Wakefield Kirkgate from London will depart King’s Cross at: 10:50 (arr 13:01), 14:20 (arr 16:47) and 19:48 (arr 22:22)
In preparation for the start of the new West Riding service at the end of the month Grand Central recently began test train running and the company’s distinctive orange and black high speed class 180 trains have become a regular sight as they call at Wakefield Kirkgate.
Grand Central has also recruited 30 additional members of staff in roles ranging from Train Driver to Customer Service Assistant and support staff to operate the new service, most of whom have been recruited from along the new West Riding route.
Note to Editors
- Grand Central currently operates its North Eastern service of four return weekday services linking Sunderland, Hartlepool, Eaglescliffe, Northallerton, Thirsk, York with London King’s Cross. The Company is an Open Access Operator; is privately owned; and has no links with the Franchised Operators specified by the DfT.
- In February of 2009 the Office of Rail Regulation granted Grand Central access rights to operate three return services between London King’s Cross and Bradford Interchange. The primary purpose of Open Access Operators is to provide direct links between communities where none formerly existed.
- Grand Central signed a lease in August 2009 for three Class 180 trains that will operate the West Riding services.
- Grand Central offers competitive and easy to understand fares which can be bought at the same price whether obtained On Line, On Train or At Staffed Station. Seat Reservations are free of charge and passengers to/from London can partake of a free tea or coffee on board.