- Par railway station
Infobox UK station
name = Par
caption = Looking westwards
First Great Western
locale = Par
latitude = 50.355
longitude = -4.70465
code = PAR
Great Western Railway
Great Western Railway
years = 1859
events = Opened
years1 = 1879
events1 = Line to Newquay opened
platforms = 3
lowusage0203 = 78,175
lowusage0405 = 94,475
lowusage0506 = 111,912
lowusage0607 = 119,859
Par Station is a railway station serving the village and port of Par,
Cornwall, Englandin the United Kingdom. It is the junctionfor the Atlantic Coast Line to Newquay. The station is operated by First Great Western, and served by trains operated by both First Great Western and CrossCountry.
The station opened with the
Cornwall Railwayon 4 May 1859. A newspaper reported at the time that it "is situated on the western side of Par bay, about a mile from the pier head, close to the road to Fowey and Tywardreath, the traffic of which places as well as St Blazey and the neighbourhoods intended to receive here. The departure and arrival stations are spacious edifices, both having verandahs projecting over the platforms, with convenient waiting rooms, ticket office, porter and lamp rooms, and other necessary conveniences. A goods station has not yet been erected, but considering the amount of business likely to be transacted here it is more than probable that a goods shedwill be required before long." ["West Briton and Cornwall Advertiser", Railway Special Edition, 1859.]
The goods shed was approved by the directors on
10 February 1860and was built of stone.
The station was too small to warrant a station master, but the "booking constable" was paid an additional 22 pounds each year by the Post Office to also act as a post master. Two cottages were built just outside the station to house railway staff.
A connection from Par to the
Cornwall Minerals Railwayline to Newquaywas opened on 1 January 1879. This was standard gaugeand so traffic between this and the broad gaugeCornwall Railway had to be transferred between trains at Par until the broad gauge was converted over the weekend of 21 May 1892. New station buildings were erected in 1884. [cite book| last = Bennett| first = Alan| title = The Great Western Railway in Mid Cornwall| publisher = Kingfisher Railway Publications| date = 1988| location = Southampton| id = ISBN 0-946184-53-4]
The Cornwall Railway was amalgamated into the
Great Western Railwayon 1 July 1889. The Great Western Railway was nationalised into British Railwaysfrom 1 January 1948which was in privatised in the 1990s.
19 May 1968an experimental Freightlinerterminal was opened on the site of the now demolished goods shed. Containers were switched between rail and road vehicles; mainly china clay traffic was handled but this did not preclude other goods. It only lasted for a couple of years. [cite book| last = Cooke| first = RA| title = Track Layout Diagrams of the GWR and BR WR, Section 11: East Cornwall| publisher = RA Cooke| date = 1977| location = Harwell]
The line approaching Par from London and Plymouth descends an incline from Treverrin Tunnel, before passing under a road overbridge adjacent to the "Royal Inn", which at one time was the "Station Hotel". Between the bridge and the station approach are two cottages that were originally built as accommodation for railway workers.Ordnance Survey (2005). "OS Explorer Map 107 - Fowey, Looe & Lostwithiel". ISBN 0-319-23708-3.]
The station has three platforms:
* Platform 1 is directly accessed from the station entrance and car park, and the main station buildings are on this platform. Trains arrive here from
London Paddington, Exeterand Plymouthbefore continuing to St Austell, Truroand Penzance.
* Platform 2 is located across the main line tracks from platform 1, and is accessed via a footbridge from that platform. Trains arrive here from Penzance, Truro and St Austell before continuing to Plymouth, Exeter and London Paddington.
* Platform 3 forms the other side of an island platform with platform 2, and is accessed by the same footbridge. Trains arrive and depart here to and from
The main line climbs up as it leaves the station towards St Austell, passing over Par Viaduct and Par Harbour. Trains on the Newquay branch traverse a sharp curve of almost 180 degrees where the line then passes St Blazey Freight Yard and the old platforms of
St Blazey railway station, which also has a signal box which is still open. The line then joins the route of the former Cornwall Minerals Railway north to their destination. A freight spur follows the line of the old minerals railway south into Par Harbour, passing under Par Viaduct and the main line as it does so.Ordnance Survey (2005). "OS Explorer Map 107 - Fowey, Looe & Lostwithiel". ISBN 0-319-23708-3.]
Status: Open, Signal Box Code: PR
It is located at the southern end of Platform 2 and opened in 1879. When the box was first built it was less than half its current length, the original box only contained 26 levers, but the frame was replaced in 1913 when 57 more levers were added. A panel has also been added to control the section beyond Burngullow. The Signal Box is still open today. This signal box controls signals at
St Austelland as far west as the now closed Probus & Ladock station.
Par station has one of the fastest growth in passenger numbers in Cornwall. Comparing the year from April 2006 to that which started in April 2002, passenger numbers increased by 53%. [cite web|title =Station Usage|work =Rail Statistics|publisher =Office of Rail Regulation| url=http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk/server/show/nav.1529|accessdate = 2008-06-30] The statistics cover twelve month periods that start in April.
Par is served by most of the
First Great Westerntrains on the Cornish Main Linebetween Penzance and Plymouth. Some trains run through to or from London Paddington station, including the Night Rivieraovernight sleeping car service. Typical journey times by a through daytime train are around 50 minutes to Plymouth, 70 minutes to Penzance, and about 4 hours to Paddington.cite web | url = http://www.firstgreatwestern.co.uk/Content.aspx?id=3 | title = Train Times | publisher = First Great Western | accessdate = May 18 | accessyear = 2007]
There are a limited number of
CrossCountrytrains providing a service to North Englandand Scotlandin the morning and returning in the evening, and one of the local services to Penzance each weekend runs from and to London Waterloo stationand is operated by South West Trains.
The branch line to Newquay sees a mixture of self-contained services and ones that run through to Plymouth. On summer weekends most of the usual local services are withdrawn and replaced by a mixture of First Great Western trains from London Paddington, and CrossCountry trains from the North of England, although most of the latter do not call at Par, running non-stop from Bodmin Parkway instead. There is no Sunday service on the branch in the winter.
The trains between Par and Newquay are designated as a
community railservice and is supported by marketing provided by the Devon and Cornwall Rail Partnership. The line is promoted under the "Atlantic Coast Line" name.
pubs near Par station take part in the Atlantic Coast Line rail ale trail, including some in neighbouring Tywardreathand St Blazey.
* [http://www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~owend/interests/rail/stnpages/par.html British Railway Stations - Par]
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