If you're on wheels, see our Easy Access page for explanation.
Stafford offers the rarity of seats on the overbridge, giving passengers a view of the southern approaches while trains run under their feet.|
A full list of routes covered by Dudley Mall appears at the foot of this
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STAFFORD station was probably rebuilt as part of the West Coast
electrification scheme in the early 1960s, and its challenging concrete just looks dingy and ugly now. That
apart, the station is well appointed with a bright concourse and ticket area, plus a travel centre,
newsagent and snack bar all to hand. Every platform has waiting rooms at the outer ends of each canopy and -
unusually - there are seats on the overbridge to watch the busy procession of trains in comfort (along with
a further waiting room over tracks 4 and 5). Stafford (the place) seems small to warrant this provision,
though the station obviously has heavy commuter use and may also be a transfer point.|
The overbridge is 32 steps up, and while it has no public lifts the goods lifts close by can be used with staff
assistance. There are timetables, overhead monitors, station plans and local street plans dotted around the
station, but don't look for platform 2 - there isn't one. Outside there is pay and display parking at daily
rates (£6.00 in May 2007), plus a very small short-stay collection point. Nearby is an Arriva bus stop
serving several routes. Wheels: SR.|
Stafford also serves the Stoke-on-Trent, Wolverhampton and Birmingham line.
RUGELEY TRENT VALLEY is a generous mile to the north of Rugeley,
but well signed along the B5013 from the roundabout at the west end of Horse Fair. The railway itself is
obvious from a distance but the turn up to the station comes suddenly by the railway bridge. The exit at the
same point is positively dangerous, especially for lone drivers. There is little vision either way - a real
case of keep checking, hit the accelerator and pray. Though the railway itself is important, the station
isn't, with little more than casual parking, a passenger overbridge and a bus shelter. The line out from
Birmingham ends here, though trains may continue to Stafford. The station is definitely not pram or
wheelchair-friendly. Wheels: SR|
Rugeley Trent Valley also serves the
LICHFIELD TRENT VALLEY The access road is a spur off the A38 on
the north-east side of the city. The main station serves the Trent Valley line, with the Burton-on-Trent
line running on a viaduct across one end. The ticket office is on the Trent Valley platform beside the pay-
and-display parking area (totally full when we visited) with two disabled spaces adjacent to it. The Burton
platform runs across the viaduct itself, reached by steps (but not lift or ramp) from each of the lower
platforms, with the upper platform also serving as the passenger bridge to the far side. The Burton platform
itself serves trains in both directions (the thin platform being for railway use). The ticket office
includes seating and there are shelters on the other platforms. Wheels: Trent Valley northbound (to Stafford) otherwise
no easy access.|
Lichfield Trent Valley also serves the Lichfield-Birmingham
TAMWORTH is a two level station, making it an exchange point. If
you're new to it, check your platform carefully for the train you intend catching. There are two ways to get
to Birmingham, according to which platform you are on. Tamworth's modern entrance foyer (platform 1) is on
the lower level and has a ticket office plus seats for about 20 people. Its partner opposite can only boast
a bus shelter. However, stairs and lifts to the upper platforms will take you to quite reasonable waiting
rooms on both sides. The upper platforms act as overbridges for the lower ones, but if you are actually
changing levels, make sure you take the right steps/lift to reach the platform you want. The station access
is directly off the A513 at a roundabout that links Offa Drive to Saxon Drive. There is fee-based parking,
but it was very full when we visited.
Wheels: SR, BN.|
Tamworth crosses the Birmingham-Nottingham line.
Click here to transfer to our guide for that line.
POLESWORTH station lies on the northern edge of the village. A
sign on the right side of Station Road points to Pooley View off to the left, just before the railway
overbridge. An immediate right turn into Orchard Close leads you to the station's easy-access northbound
platform and parking for a handful of cars. Polesworth is another diminished station, with its buildings
gone, its middle platform erased and the middle staircase gap blocked up in the unsheltered steel
overbridge. The bridge is the only access to the southbound platform, ruling out wheelchair access, and the
only refuge from the weather is a pair of bus shelters with most of the glass replaced with rusting sheets
of metal. Passenger services call at roughly three-hour intervals. Wheels: SR.
Atherstone station lies about 100 yards to the northwest of the town centre, just where the eastbound slip road from the A5 comes down to it, and the station is clearly
signed. In 1985 Atherstone won an award for the preservation of its station building, but times have moved on. A small car park (about 16 cars) gives level access to the southbound platform, but only a modern high steel overbridge (high to clear the electric train power catenary) will get you to the other side. The station building is now in separate hands - though it does back on to the platform, where it has been treated to mindless graffiti. Two bus shelters are the only theoretical shelter from the elements, but these have been grimly vandalised and are useless. Trains call every 2-3 hours. Wheels:
part of the West Coast Main Line modernisation scheme. The new platform is reached by an extension to the passenger overbridge and a new lift down to the new platform. Outside, there is substantial pay and display parking with daily rate (£3.00 in 2003) as the minimum fee. Wheels: BL, SR.
||NUNEATON station lies on the north side of the town centre, just to the west of the A444. It is at the confluence of lines from Birmingham, Stafford, Leicester, Coventry and Rugby and this complexity has created a sizeable station. The buildings have not been 'modernised' (in the stripped to bus shelters sense) and the station thus retains a full set of waiting rooms, refreshments, even a model shop, and extensive platform canopies to give shelter. An overbridge gives normal pedestrian access between platforms, but passenger lifts have been added as well. In 2003-4 the rail approaches were remodelled to allow a new platform (6/7) to be added to relieve the pressure on this busy station as|
Nuneaton also serves the
The next station on the Trent Valley Line is Rugby, but there is also a connection from Nuneaton via Bedworth to Coventry (see below) - from where you can also continue to Rugby if you wish.
Bedworth station is on Bulkington Road, about 5 minutes from the town centre. It's a very basic station accessed by smooth ramps with strong handrails (but wheelchair users might usefully wear gloves as some of the plants are thorny). Each platform has a rather grim-looking open-front bus shelter with 10 tip-up seats. The station has no ticket office, but there is a car park for about 20 spaces - entrance in Railway Terrace.
COVENTRY is one of the major Midlands stations. It has four
platform faces and all platforms are protected by long canopies. The platforms are linked by two parallel
passenger bridges - one for pedestrians, and one for lift users. Although these seem to be linked, they
actually connect only above platform 4. The concourse has the main ticket office, a full range of other
services, and leads directly to platform 1 (with steps off to the left to get to the overbridge). Outside,
there are buses departing from one face of the building, taxis from another, and car parking (not free) is
adjacent. Apart from the unexpected separateness of the overbridges (shown by the thick line on the plan),
the station is straightforward for all users, including prams, trolleys and wheelchairs.
Coventry is part of the Birmingham-Coventry-London line.
RUGBY station lies to the north east of the town centre, and is
not quite the station it was in the high tide of railways, but it is still a major station sitting at the
junction of the two routes to Stafford (via Birmingham and via the Trent Valley). The original building
still has a full range of facilities including waiting areas, snacks, newspapers, and drinking bowls for
your dogs, and most of the platform is covered by a canopy. Access is by an underpass from Railway Terrace,
emerging as a ramp up to the platform beside the ticket office and travel centre. There is a second
underpass heading to the far side of the station, but this was locked when we visited. There is a taxi rank
in Railway Terrace, buses call, there is 20 minute short term parking and two car parks for long stays.|
Since our visit, Rugby station has been undergoing extensive remodelling as part of the general speeding up of train services on the West Coast Route. A new platform came into in use on the south side of the station in 2007 and became the new platform 1. This means that the other platforms will also be renumbered. Two more platforms will be completed in 2008, and a new entrance and ticket office is also in the scheme. Wheels: RS
Rugby also serves the Birmingham-Coventry-London
Notes and sketches are intended only to give a general impression at the time of our
visit, and should not be relied upon for more than that. Dudley Mall accepts no liability for errors, but will
correct any significant ones notified to us through email@example.com or by post to Dudley Mall, 62 Gervase Drive, Dudley, West Midlands DY1 4AT.|
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