BISHOP AUCKLAND WEST
SAT NAV DL14 7TL
Bishop Auckland West is the terminus station at the eastern end of the line and has a mainline connection to the national network. Access to the station is currently only accessible on foot, a short walk from the national rail station Bishop Auckland. There is limited parking at the main network rail station or alternatively at Morrisons supermarket. There are no toilet facilities at the station. See map below for the walking route between the Northern Rail Station at Bishop Auckland and the Weardale Railway Station
A BRIEF HISTORY OF BISHOP AUCKLAND WEST STATION
First opened in 1843, when the line was extended from South Church to Crook, Bishop Auckland was to develop into an important interchange point. It was like the hub of a wheel with lines radiating to all parts of the railway network including Darlington, Crook & Weardale, Durham, Spennymoor and Barnard Castle. It was unusual in shape being triangular, so it was no problem if a locomotive needed turning. It was occasionally used as diversion route by mainline express traffic to avoid engineering works between Darlington and Durham. A substantial goods yard opened in the 1870's existed towards the centre of the town. Scammel delivery trucks could often be seen scurrying around the busy streets with deliveries.
In the immediate post-war years it was possible to catch Tyneside to Blackpool summer specials via Barnard Castle and Stainmore summit. Line closures in the 1960's left the station a shadow of its former self. Eventually the old station buildings were to be demolished and replaced in the 1980's with a modern style chalet building. This building today also provides accommodation for a snack bar and a station ticket office and shop operated by Bishop Trains. A signal adjacent to the platform marks the point where the Weardale Railway commences.
On 22nd May 2010 a temporary platform and the line to Weardale were formally opened to passengers, with a trial daily community service commencing the following day between Bishop Auckland and Stanhope. This service ran until 2012. From 1 July 2018 heritage services began running back to the station.