Despite living relatively nearby, I have just recently learnt about Pilning station. That I have been unaware of it until now is not particularly surprising, as there are only two services a week. (it attracted some news coverage as the second service is being moved an hour earlier, making the schedule even less useful).

Further, these are not comprised of an inbound and outbound pair (say, one train to Bristol and one back)- instead, they both run in the same direction, east. This is because the westbound platform was rendered inaccessible by the removal of the passenger footbridge. Is Pilning unique in this regard, at least within the context of British railways?

Clearly any station which features only a single service a day would be another example. But conceivably there may be others with more regular service, yet still just in one direction (maybe some sort of loop arrangement, or due to a similar loss of a platform). @Berend points out the obvious case of a terminal station; I'd like to exclude those from consideration.

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    Any station at the end of a line? ;-)
    – Berend
    Nov 6, 2019 at 19:29
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    Another is Polesworth. Since Why do some stations have just one train a week? was fairly easy to find, I won't post an answer. There are several stations on the UK rail network that are served by one train a week or just one daily service in one direction. Nov 6, 2019 at 19:58
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    I can't help but think this wouldn't belong better on a different SE site, but I have no idea which, so instead I'll just offer up the "Heathrow Terminal 4" tube station which technically at least only has trains headed in a single direction.
    – Doc
    Nov 6, 2019 at 20:09
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    Maybe the key is that all departing and arriving passengers are going in the same direction. At a terminal, departing passengers travel one direction (e.g. north), and arriving passengers travel the opposite direction (e.g. south). That would also be the case for a station near a terminal, where trains pass through going both ways, but you can only board northbound or disembark southbound (so that the trains do not carry local traffic). Nov 6, 2019 at 21:23
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    This is a question for Geoff Marshall. Nov 6, 2019 at 23:13

1 Answer 1


Answering the question as it was clearly intended (ie ignoring termini where trains reverse). So a formal definition would be something like a station where you can arrive only from one direction and depart only in the same direction (that is away from where you can arrive from). I will include metro systems but not trams, as you have to draw a line somewhere and there are TONNES of tram stops that qualify...:

  • Pilning — footbridge removed due to electrification
  • Polesworth — footbridge removed due to West Coast Main Line upgrades
  • Teesside Airport — footbridge closed for safety reasons. There are murmurs of bringing the station back into regular use thanks to the attempt to increase the popularity of the adjacent airport, but this would take time.
  • Hubberts Bridge — perhaps temporary, new addition as of 2020. Platform demolished due to it slowly slipping into a forty-foot drain beneath. The rebuilding work was completed in 2021 I believe
  • Heathrow Terminal 4 (London Underground) — on a single-track loop at the end of a line
  • If you count this as a separate station to the high-level station, Liverpool Lime Street Low Level, which is on a one-way loop. Similarly if you count them as separate stations to the Northern Line stations, the Wirral Line stations at Moorfields and Liverpool Central.

I haven't spotted any more so far!

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