New figures from the Office of Road and Rail show the strong performance of West Yorkshire’s new rail stations.
Significant investment (£26.7m) from the West Yorkshire Combined Authority supported the opening of Apperley Bridge, Kirkstall Forge and Low Moor stations.
The first set of comprehensive figures covering all three stations shows Apperley Bridge was used by 372,000 passengers while Kirkstall Forge was used by 150,000 passengers last year, growth of 6.3% and 58.9% respectively. Low Moor, which opened in March 2017, has also had a strong start with 133,060 station users in its first year of operation. The Combined Authority will continue to work with Northern and Network Rail to achieve its ambition for two services an hour at Low Moor to deliver the station’s full potential.
The ORR report highlights Leeds continued status as the busiest station in the North with over 31m people passing through in 2017/18.
Cllr Susan Hinchcliffe, Chair of the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and Leader of Bradford Council, said: “It is great to see the impressive use of these new stations and proves that investment in the transport network in our region delivers positive results. These attractive, integrated transport facilities link local communities and businesses and provide greater opportunities to sustain economic growth that will benefit the whole region.
“We will continue to work with partners to further increase usage at these stations and to make the case for investment across our transport network.”
Cllr Judith Blake, who leads on transport for the West Yorkshire Combined Authority and is Leader of Leeds City Council, said: “Against the backdrop of continued regional disparities in funding, these timely figures highlight the strong return that can be secured through investment in the North of England transport network.
“This report highlights Leeds station’s status as the busiest in the North of England. It is essential that investment in this gateway for the region matches our ambitions for further growth and supports its development ready for the arrival of HS2 and Northern Powerhouse Rail.”