Station Name: WIGAN LYR 2nd

[Source: Paul Wright]

Date opened: 26.5.1860
Location: On the east side of the West Coast Main Line overbridge just to the west of the present Wigan Wallgate station.
Company on opening: Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway
Date closed to passengers: 2.2.1896
Date closed completely: 2.2.1896
Company on closing: Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway
Present state: Demolished but a section of the footbridge on the north side of the line was still in situ in 2015.
County: Lancashire
OS Grid Ref: SD579056
Date of visit: 20.3.2015

Notes: The second Wigan Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway (LYR) station was situated on the Liverpool & Bury Railway (L&BR) which was authorised on 31 July 1845. The route of the line took in the towns of Wigan and Bolton and had been promoted by prominent industrialists who wanted a more direct route between the industrial areas of east Lancashire and the port of Liverpool. Since 1830 the Liverpool & Manchester Railway (L&M) had held a monopoly on trade between those areas and it did not offer a direct route. Work on the line began in January 1846 and on 9 July 1847 the L&BR merged with other companies to form the Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway (LYR). The line was opened on 20 November 1848 and a second route between Liverpool and Manchester was created as there was already a line between Bolton and Manchester which had opened on 29 May 1838. A station was provided at Wigan to the south of Wallgate, a main thoroughfare in the centre of the town.

On 9 April 1855 the LYR opened a line from Wigan to Southport. The Southport line connected to the Liverpool and Bury railway just west of the point where the London & North Western Railway (LNWR) Crewe – Preston line (part of the London to Glasgow main line) passed over the LYR lines on a bridge.

The original Wigan station was not well regarded, being described by the Ormskirk Advertiser newspaper as a ‘hovel’. On 26 May 1860 the LYR opened a new Wigan station ¼- mile west of the original.

The station was located to the north-west of Wallgate immediately east of the LNWR line. The station was approached via King West Street (connecting with Wallgate) which was on the north side of the line. The main facilities, including the booking office, were located in a large building on the up side of the line (Bury direction). A curving driveway led from the east end of the up platform and passed over the line providing a link to the down platform (Liverpool direction). There was a large building on the down platform which housed waiting rooms and a telegraph office. Both platforms were provided with canopies that ran for the length of the building and extended over the width of the platform.

Goods facilities were located to the south of the passenger station.

On the west side of the LNWR bridge, on the north side of the line, close to Southport Junction there was a signal box. Called Southport Junction the box controlled the junction and the lines at the west end of the second station.

A hotel called The Railway Hotel was located to the east of the station forecourt.

At the time of opening the second Wigan station would have been served by trains running between Liverpool and Manchester, Rochdale and Bolton and by trains running to and from the Southport Line as shown in the February 1863 timetable below.

On 1 June 1889 the LYR started running passenger trains over a direct route to Manchester which diverged from the original line at Crow Nest Junction near Hindley and re-joined it at Pendleton running via Atherton. The line had opened to goods services on 1 May 1889. The LYR was able to run fast express services between Liverpool and Manchester that were able to compete with those of other companies.

The December 1895 timetable showed 43 up and 44 down services from Wigan Monday-to-Friday as seen in the table below. There was an extra down service on Saturdays there was a good level of service on Sundays.

Up Trains December 1895 Destination Down Trains December 1895 destination
7.40am Manchester Victoria 7.28am Liverpool Exchange
7.50am Manchester Victoria 7.55am Liverpool Exchange
7.55am Manchester Victoria 7.57am Southport Chapel Street
8.23am Manchester Victoria 8.54am Liverpool Exchange
8.37am Manchester Victoria 9.08am Liverpool Exchange
8.46am Kearsley 9.37am Southport Chapel Street
9.26am Manchester Victoria 9.45am Southport Chapel Street
9.34am York 9.58am Rainford Junction
9.38am Manchester Victoria 9.55am Liverpool Exchange
9.45am Manchester Victoria 10.39am Liverpool Exchange
10.21am Manchester Victoria 10.46am Southport Chapel Street
10.32am Manchester Victoria 11.15am Burscough Bridge
10.37am Manchester Victoria 11.28am Liverpool Exchange
11.16am York 12.05pm Southport Chapel Street
11.27am Manchester Victoria 12.14pm Liverpool Exchange
11.35am Manchester Victoria 12.42pm Liverpool Exchange
11.40am Manchester Victoria 12.48pm Southport Chapel Street
12.07pm Manchester Victoria 1.12pm Southport Chapel Street
12.21pm Manchester Victoria 1.30pm Rainford Junction
12.53pm Manchester Victoria 1.50pm Southport Chapel Street
1.35pm Manchester Victoria 2.15pm Liverpool Exchange
1.49pm Bolton 2.31pm Southport Chapel Street
1.52pm Manchester Victoria 3.16pm Southport Chapel Street
2.15pm Bolton 3.30pm Liverpool Exchange
2.35pm Manchester Victoria 3.46pm Southport Chapel Street
2.45pm Manchester Victoria 4.00pm Liverpool Exchange
2.55pm Manchester Victoria 4.39pm Southport Chapel Street
3.07pm Manchester Victoria 4.48pm Southport Chapel Street
4.29pm Manchester Victoria 4.53pm Liverpool Exchange
4.35pm York 5.15pm Southport Chapel Street
5.29pm Manchester Victoria 5.39pm Liverpool Exchange
5.42pm Manchester Victoria 6.11pm Southport Chapel Street
5.48pm Manchester Victoria 6.19pm Southport Chapel Street
6.20pm York 6.24pm Pimbo Lane
6.28pm Manchester Victoria 6.45pm Southport Chapel Street
7.35pm Manchester Victoria 6.56pm Rainford Junction
7.38pm Manchester Victoria 7.16pm Liverpool Exchange
7.50pm Manchester Victoria 7.20pm Southport Chapel Street
8.28pm Bolton 8.18pm Southport Chapel Street
9.17pm Manchester Victoria 8.20pm Liverpool Exchange
9.40pm Manchester Victoria 9.42pm Liverpool Exchange
9.55pm Manchester Victoria 9.45pm Southport Chapel Street
10.00pm Manchester Victoria 10.49pm Liverpool Exchange
    10.53pm Southport Chapel Street

By 1894 the LNWR had rebuilt their Wigan station and in doing so provided much better facilities. Not to be outdone on 29 June 1893 the LYR appointed the contractors R. Neill & Sons to build a new station immediately to the east of the second station at a cost of £30,192, less £608 for materials that the contractor could salvage from the second station. The main entrance to the new station was located at street level on Wallgate. The new station opened on 2 February 1896 and became known as Wigan Wallgate from 2 July 1924.The second station was demolished leaving only a small section of the footbridge which could still be seen in March 2015.

Route map by and timetable from Alan Young.

The 8D Association - Dedicated to promoting the history of South Lancashire and North Cheshire railways. Web Site


  • The Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway - Volume 1 - John Marshall - David & Charles 1969
  • The Lancashire & Yorkshire Railway - Volume 2 - John Marshall - David & Charles 1970

To see other stations on the Liverpool Exchange - Wigan Wallgate line click on the station name: Liverpool Exchange, Liverpool Great Howard Street,
Kirkby Royal Ordnance Factory, Rainford, Rainford Junction,
Upholland 1st
& Wigan (LYR) 1st.

A view looking east towards the second Wigan LYR station in the early 1890s. The up platform of the station can be seen beyond the bridge. In the foreground is the Southport Junction signal box which had been extended over the years giving it a ramshackle appearance. The bridge carried the LNWR main line between London and Carlisle.

The second Wigan LYR station shown on an 1860s town plan.

Looking west at the site of the second Wigan LYR station on 18 May 1980. Formet Liverpool and Manchester Railway locomotive Lion is seen on a transfer working between Southport and Bold Colliery so that it could take part in the 150th anniversary of its former owners railway.
Photo by Bob Avery from his flickr photostream

The site of the second Wigan LYR station looking west on 20 March 2015.
hoto by Paul Wright

The second Wigan LYR station footbridge seen looking south-east on 20 March 2015. The bridge linked the up platform to the down and was located at the east end of the station.
hoto by Les Fifoot

The site of the second station footbridge can be discerned in this photo taken on 20 March 2015.
hoto by Paul Wright

A view looking west down the slope of the second station footbridge seen on 20 March 2015. The up platform station building had been at the bottom of the slope where the flat roofed brick building can be seen. The station forecourt area can be seen to the right of that building.
hoto by Paul Wright

The second Wigan LYR forecourt seen looking east on 20 March 2015. The Railway Hotel shown on the 1860s town plan above was located in the space where the temporary fencing can be seen. The area of stone setts seen to the right was part of an access gateway that led to the up platform.
hoto by Les Fifoot

The site of the second Wigan LYR station looking west on 20 March 2015. The platforms of the 1896 Wigan Wallgate station can be seen to the left.
hoto by Paul Wright




[Source: Paul Wright]

Last updated: Sunday, 09-Aug-2020 15:30:18 CEST
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