Travel & Tourism

Greater Manchester train station named ‘worst’ in UK – with three others in top 10

81% of services are delayed or cancelled here, on average.

Emily Sergeant Emily Sergeant - 4th June 2024

One of Greater Manchester’s many train stations has been named the ‘worst’ in the UK, according to a new analysis.

And unfortunately, it’s joined in the top 10 by a handful of others in the region too.

It’s pretty fair to say at this point that the country’s rail network, train services, and stations have been far below the standards that passengers expect for quite some time now – with constant delays, last-minute cancellations, short-formed services, and ongoing strike action, by both station staff and train drivers, being commonplace for the past few years.

Most-recently, a new analysis named Avanti West Coast as Britain’s most ‘unreliable’ train operator, as it was found to have a massive 15.36% of its trains cancelled or delayed, on average – but now, it’s the train stations that have found themselves in the firing line.

That’s because, new figures released by On Time Trains has seen Kearsley train station, just outside of Bolton, ranked as the country’s lowest performing’ station over the four weeks leading up to 28 May.


The company analysed station’s performances based off the frequency and length of delays, plus how often trains are cancelled.

When it comes to the Bolton-based station’s punctuality and cancellation rate, On Time Trains found that 81% of the trains due to stop at Kearsley were either delayed or cancelled entirely over the one-month period, and most delays recorded exceeded the two-minute mark.


Top 10 ‘worst performing’ UK train stations

  1. Kearsley
  2. Taynuilt 
  3. Crianlarich
  4. Moses Gate
  5. Penrith
  6. Farnworth
  7. Ince and Elton
  8. Connel Ferry
  9. Bescar Lane
  10. Blackrod

Bolton hasn’t escaped lightly with just Kearsley in the top spot either, as unfortunately for the Greater Manchester borough, three of its other stations have also made the top 10 list.

Moses Gate takes the fourth spot on the list, while Farnworth has found itself in sixth place, and the top 10 is rounded out by Blackrod.

Moses Gate station, just outside of Bolton, which also makes it into the top 10 / Credit: Platforms (via Visit North West)

Some of the other Northern stations ranking in the top 10 include Penrith, and Ince and Elton.


Speaking in reaction to its poor performance in the recent results, a spokesperson for Northern commented: “Recently, our performance and reliability have not been up to scratch, and for that we are sorry.

“We are very actively managing higher levels of staff sickness, and on Sundays, which rely on crews volunteering to work additional hours, we have seen a reduction in train crew making themselves available on parts of the network.

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“In addition, the ongoing industrial relations issues have their own impact, but we are working hard with our colleagues and other train operators to improve service reliability.”

Featured Image – Wikimedia Commons