The transformation of Hartlepool Station has hit another milestone today (12 May) as plans for the redevelopment were officially submitted as the first pictures of the overhauled station were revealed.
Hartlepool station is the busiest single-platform station in the UK and the third-biggest station in the region which, pre-pandemic, welcomed up to 650,000 passengers per year. It hosts direct services between London and Sunderland operated by Grand Central and connects Middlesbrough, Newcastle and other key economic centres across the region on the Durham Coast rail line with Northern services.
The scheme will see the station’s redundant second through platform brought back into use, opening up capacity and unlocking the potential for a future growth in services. New lifts and a footbridge will be installed to provide access to the platform.
The £12million in funding needed to make the transformation possible was secured by Tees Valley Mayor Ben Houchen as part of a pot of cash worth £310million secured from Government to invest in local transport priorities.
The station’s redevelopment will also support the ambitions of the Hartlepool Mayoral Development Corporation, which was recently announced by Mayor Houchen. The scheme aims to reshape the town to make it a more attractive place to live and visit, support small businesses and deliver a master plan to maximise future funding.
It is the second of its kind in the region after the South Tees Development Corporation, now known as Teesworks, which is currently driving the regeneration of the former Redcar steelworks site.
The work, supported by Network Rail, Northern Trains Limited and Hartlepool Borough Council, is set to begin later this summer, with an ambitious programme for completion in time for the Tall Ships coming to the town in July 2023.
Mayor Houchen said: “Local people have been crying out for years for the second platform to be reinstated, and I am pleased to be able to make it happen. This is the next step in giving them what they want and making it easier than ever to get to, from and around our region.
“With plans to establish a new Hartlepool Mayoral Corporation now under way, there’s no point transforming the town into an exciting and vibrant centre that people want to visit – and one that’s even better to do business in – if it’s stuck with a major station that’s simply not fit for purpose.
“This upgrade will enhance and futureproof the station, make it able to cope with even more services and complement major overhauls at the likes of Darlington, Middlesbrough and Eaglescliffe.”
Councillor Shane Moore, Leader of Hartlepool Borough Council, said: “We are delighted to receive these plans for consideration by the Council’s planning department.
“It takes us an important step closer to making the railway station fit for the 21st century and ready for the many visitors who will be heading to Hartlepool when we welcome back the Tall Ships next year.
“With the extensive work we’re already doing to transform our town, including the creation of Highlight on the Waterfront, plus the recently-announced Hartlepool Mayoral Development Corporation, I’m tremendously excited for the future.”
Kieran Dunkin, Principal Programme Sponsor for Network Rail, said: “This huge investment will dramatically change the way that Hartlepool station works for passengers, making it easier to use, better connected and ready to respond to the town’s future growth.
“We’ll continue to work with our partners to deliver as many benefits as we can within a single upgrade, and we’ll integrate it with our existing plans at Darlington, Middlesbrough and Eaglescliffe to make sure the benefits are felt across the region.”
Kerry Peters, Regional Director at Northern said: “We are excited to see the initial plans for upgrades to Hartlepool station submitted for planning permission.
“We welcome the investment and long-term benefits the work would bring to our customers.”