Welcome to Davenport


This site is for users of Davenport railway station, Stockport, England - and for all the people of Davenport.  Our aim is to have plenty of useful information for users of the station, and act as a forum for contributions and suggestions.

Please note that this site is unofficial and is not connected with Northern or any rail company. Information here is presented in good faith, but we cannot be responsible if your train (or bus) does not arrive when expected.




Northern Station Information

Network Rail full details for Davenport station

Postal Address of the station:

Davenport Station
Bramhall Lane
Davenport
STOCKPORT
Cheshire
SK3 8SA

Ticket office opening hours: Monday - Friday 06:20 - 12:50
Saturday 07:00 - 13:30
Sunday closed.

When the office is closed, tickets are sold on the train.


About Davenport

Davenport is a mostly-residential, tree-lined, suburb of Stockport, in Greater Manchester, England. Its focal point is its railway station, which is on the Manchester - Stockport - Buxton line, and  it does have a range of facilities within a short distance which make it a particularly good place to live for anyone who does not wish to drive a car.

Minutes from the station there are some good quality shops, including convenience stores, a bank, a pharmacy, a baker, a butcher and a greengrocer as well as a post office/newsagent. Davenport is well-served by buses to Stockport town centre,  and the trains will get you to Manchester Piccadilly station in 20 minutes.

The trains heading away from Stockport offer an instant transfer to the countryside, with pleasant walks along the Middlewood Way and Peak Forest Canal 15 minutes away and the Peak National Park within half an hour.

Stockport's main hospital, Stepping Hill, is a couple of kilometres away, and even the town's cemetery and crematorium are within walking distance. We have a 'green-flag' park, Cale Green Park, incorporating a kids' playground and with Cricket and Lacrosse clubs adjacent, and a good public house, the 'Jolly Sailor' about five minutes walk from the station. A Methodist church is nearby, and the large late-Victorian Anglican church, St George's, is a short walk towards Stockport.



For more information, contributions to the site, suggested web links, and any other comments and questions, please email info@
davenportstation.org.uk

Visitors in 2008: 3395
Visitors in 2009: 4210
Visitors in 2010: 5093
Visitors in 2011: 5455
Visitors in 2012: 5938
Visitors in 2013: 6004
Visitors in 2014: 6712
Visitors in 2015: 5181
Visitors in 2016: 5349

2018 Timetable Consultation page updated, 20 June

RMT plan three-day strike


The RMT union has announced a three-day strike by Northern train conductors, on 8-10 July, justified by a long rant on the RMT website. Arriva Rail North, operators of the Northern franchise, are accused of 'sheer intransigence' but that's not surprising since the requirement to run 50% of services with Driver-Only operation was included in the Department for Transport Franchise Agreement which they have signed in return for the amount of Government Subsidy on offer. Such clauses were also included in the contracts for the Merseyrail and Southern companies, on which strikes are still ongoing. So unless the DfT relax their conditions, it's stalemate.  Meanwhile, Northern managers have been receiving training to act as conductors.

Safety is continually cited as the reason for the RMT action, but the problem with this is that accidents involving passengers getting on and off trains are so rare now that most trains have doors interlocked with the train power, and occur with both driver-only trains and those with guards. So accurate statistical proofs are a matter for constant argument. Passengers will surely feel safer with a Conductor looking after them, but is it an expensive luxury for the taxpayer to fund? Who knows.
22 June 2017




Archive from 1994: but the problem's coming back again (in reverse) in 2018!
21 June 2017

25 May Update

Passengers will need to check their train times at the moment, as problems following the closure of Manchester Victoria station mean that several of our Hazel Grove - Blackpool services are not operating.

A tiny bit of better news: the conductors' strike threatened for 30 May will now not take place.

25 May 2017


Changes from 21 May


The Summer timetable came into operation on 21 May: There seem to be few changes to train  times on the Buxton line, but we would recommend checking your train on the Northern website. The same day also saw another leap in Off-peak fares: an off-peak day return to Manchester is now £5.  'Anytime' day return remains £5.90 and, while the only single ticket available is the Anytime Day single at £3.70. A seven-day season ticket is £21.70, less than the cost of four 'anytime' return tickets, or five 'off-peak'.

Another Northern conductor strike is planned for Tuesday 30 May so that staff get an extra long holiday weekend. Read the RMT Union's view and Northern's response.

On the subject of the May 2018 timetable (see below) considerable correspondence has taken place between Friends of Woodsmoor and Davenport stations and Northern Railway managers, and a response is in preparation. Thanks to everyone who has emailed with their own comments, which will be incorporated into the response document. More comments are welcome, particularly from those who see Davenport as a destination (students, for example) rather than a home station.

21 May 2017

Spring is here





Fares shock (3)


Yet another increase in local Off-peak fares will be applied from 21 May: The off-peak return from Davenport to Manchester will increase to £5.00, compared to £3.50 in Summer 2016.  The 'Anytime Fare' remains at £5.90; the policy is (we understand) to bring off-peak return fares to the same discount rate as has been normal outside Greater Manchester. There will also be some increases in the price of 'Wayfarer' tickets and Day Ranger tickets.

While on the subject, it seems that some holders of Greater Manchester concession cards believe they cannot travel free by train within Greater Manchester in the Mon-Fri 16:01 to 18:29 'Evening Peak.' This is not the case: only travel in the Mon-Fri pre-09:30 morning period requires you to buy a ticket.
06 May 2017

Timetable consultation worries


We have received a copy of the 'Stakeholder Consultation' proposed timetable for Northern trains from May 2018, which we find quite disconcerting, as - despite promised to improved services in the new franchise - Davenport and Woodsmoor users will find their journey opportunities much reduced, as although there are extra trains shown, it is proposed that many of them should not stop here, and of those that do, departures to Manchester will no longer be evenly spaced within each hour.  How anyone can think these changes are an improvement, we cannot imagine. We have prepared a summary of the changes which can be downloaded here.
06 May 2017

Refurbished trains




Northern trains have started to appear in the chosen new livery of white with blue ends and various coloured blobs, signifying that they have been given the 'refurbishment' promised in the franchise award.   We recently found ourselves in the first refurnished example of the 'Class 150' trains which run many of our services, and had a chance to check out the interior. Unfortunately for anyone larger or wider than average, the cramped '3+2' seating has been retained, with new upholstery and a general clean-up inside. Facilities for the disabled have been improved, including a new toilet and information displays, but these will be of little benefit to users at Davenport, as the station platforms are not accessible.
06 May 2017

Bus service change


Travellers to the Handforth and Wilmslow areas should note that the 378 bus service from Stockport via Davenport no longer continues beyond  Greater Manchester to Handforth and Wilmslow. All journeys now terminate at Grove Lane. Travel by train, with a change at Stockport, is quite feasible; the connection times are mostly quite convenient and the fares not too expensive (off-peak tickets are valid in the evening peak for these journeys). Concession card holders need tickets only from Cheadle Hulme - such tickets can be bought from Davenport station.
06 May 2017

Another strike

The RMT Union has called another strike of Northern Rail staff, again on a date chosen to cause maximum inconvenience to passengers, Friday 28 April, the day before the Bank Holiday weekend. No doubt there will be the skeleton daytime service that we have seen before.

At the risk of offending our friends on the railway, we really must question the purpose of this action. The new Northern Railway management seem to have no idea yet how they are going to meet the Department of Transport's requirement to run 50% of trains under the control of the driver only, and when they do actually have an idea, there will be many changes and modifications to (existing) trains, stations, and signalling needed - and who will assist disabled people at un-staffed stations? There's no practical possibility that Metrolink-style gap-free boarding can be applied to 'heavy rail' lines.

The RMT's position is that the fight is 'all about safety' and not jobs, and a guard -  a conscientious one at least - on the train has a value, and most passengers are, we feel, happy with the current situation, except perhaps when they are trapped on the train while he finishes selling a ticket and returns to the back to open the doors, or doesn't bother to come round causing you to join a queue on arrival. The Government says it costs too much money and driver-only trains have been running in the London area for years.

Meanwhile, the guards lose a day's pay, and the Company loses nothing in the short term, as the Government has promised to underwrite any financial loss due to strikes related to this subject.
21 April 2017

Engineering work, Easter Weekend


Network Rail are working on the line over the Easter Holidays: 'Structures and level crossing improvements' apparently. (Will they take the chance to revove the fallen tree from the roof of our waiting room, we wonder. [Update - No.]) All trains are replaced by buses between Stockport and Buxton on Sunday 16 April and between Hazel Grove and Buxton on Monday 17 April. The timetable is on the Northern website.

Buses on Sunday will pick up / set down at the bus stops at Cale Green Park gates and the stop across the road from there.  Passengers should note that at Woodsmoor the buses call at a stop on Bramhall Lane and at Middlewood the at a stop on the main A6 road near the junction of Middlewood Road.  Bikes are not carried.

There are also engineering works elsewhere, notably around Manchester Viictoria, where work continues to complete the 'Ordsall Chord.'
14 April 2017

TfGM bids to run stations

Plans to 'put passengers first and transform Greater Manchester’s local rail stations into community hubs'  have been unveiled by Transport for Greater Manchester.
 
TfGM has submitted its ‘Case for Change’ to the Department for Transport, in a bid to secure a multi-million pound investment and regional accountability by bringing Greater Manchester’s rail stations under local control. The submission has been made on behalf of the Greater Manchester Combined Authority (GMCA), in line with the 2014 devolution agreement and 2040 strategic vision for transport to drive economic growth and regeneration.

The detailed business case recommends the wholesale transfer of station ownership and management from Network Rail and train operators to Greater Manchester as the best solution to help stations realise their full potential.

Fuller information on the TfGM website. A similar arrangement already exists on Merseyside, but the network there is much more self-contained than ours.
28 March 2017

Strike news

The RMT union (which represents train conductors) has called a 24-hour strike on Northern Railway for Monday 13 March, in protest against the proposed introduction of driver-only operation on some services, which was part of the requirement of the Department of Transport when the new franchise agreement was signed with Arriva. It seems likely that this will go ahead, especially since the DfT are so keen to bring in the new way of working that they are willing to underwrite financial losses by the company due to any industrial action.

Northern intend to run a basic service on some lines, and bus replacements on others: the have set up a page on their website with links to the planned timetables for the day. In the case of our line, this consists of an hourly service between Buxton and Manchester between starting late and finishing early. (Read what RMT say about this 'scab timetable'.)

There also will be fairly frequent trains available all day between Stockport and Manchester, run by other companies (Virgin, etc.) The strike also applies to the Merseyrail company in the Liverpool area, where new trains designed for driver-only working have just been ordered.

The guards say that the proposed change will be unsafe, as the driver will not be able to ensure people's safety before closing the doors and starting the train. Northern say they haven't even started planning how this will work, as it's not due to start for some years and lots of extra equipment (mirrors, cameras?) will be provided at stations. Ticket-sellers would be provided on train when necessary.

What do we think? We think that rail strikes are a terrible idea, as they do nothing to encourage people to use the train, which is the point of this website. On the other hand, the current system where the conductor is expected to work the doors and also sell tickets does not work well. An ideal procedure (from the passengers viewpoint) would seem to be that to reduce delays the driver can release the door locks at a station, but the conductor is in charge of closing them. But the RMT say this is the thin end of the wedge, and the Bureaucrats DfT are desperate to save money on subsidy.

Disabled passengers are likely to lose some of their flexibility to make ad hoc journeys, as there will be nobody to deploy the ramp, even if a station (unlike Davenport) has step-free access, lifts, etc. The driver is not really in a position to help in such matters. 

10 March 2017

Up on the roof


'Storm Doris' on 23 February brought down a large part of the horse-chestnut tree in the garden of Davenport Lodge on to the roof of the station waiting-room, which fortunately does not appear to have been damaged, but removing the tree could be tricky.
07 March 2017

New local history article

We have uploaded a new feature to our local history section: 'Tasmania Cottage and its Neighbours' in which we try to trace the history of some buildings in the historic Adswood Lane West area, including the (recently closed) Adswood Hotel, and try to explain why some buildings are named for places in Tasmania.  Some of the answers have eduded us: any comments or elucidation would be particularly welcome.
07 March 2017

Looking ahead

A short summary of the progress of the new Northern company's plans may be in order. The change of franchise last year was accompanied by a requirement to acquire more trains, new and second-hand, to introduce a new, improved, timetable. The first stage of this was to commence in December 2017. However, the fleet increase by that date depended on the completion of the electrification work on the Great Western line out of London, releasing some 1980s-built Class 150 diesel railcars to add to the Northern fleet, as well as the completion of the Manchester - Blackpool electrification which would allow second-hand electric trains transferred from the London area to work Blackpool services.

However, it's clear that those projects are not running smoothly, so Northern management have taken the decision to delay the major timetable changes until May 2018. There is still no detail available about how the franchise requirements are to be accomplished; from the skeletal information available, there are few timetable improvements likely at Davenport and Woodsmoor stations, although we can hopefully expect to see Class 319 electric trains on services terminating at Hazel Grove. Possibly we might even see them running to Buxton as well, as the owners of the 319s, leasing company Porterbrook, have hatched to plan to fit some of them with diesel-powered generators to become allow them to continue beyond the electric wires. This is known as the '319 flex' project.

Update: We wondered whether such a set-up would manage the hills to Buxton, but an informed reader writes to tell us that our line was actually a parameter in the design, and that 'the trains are designed around the 1-in-60 climb up to Buxton after a United-City Derby.'  Good news.

Brand new trains are on order, but these are likely to be used on long-distance 'express' services, leaving the old 1980s stock, refurbished internally, to soldier on in to the uncertain future. What Northern will not tell us is whether anything will be done about the cramped narrow 3+2 seating layout of the Class 150 units (and indeed also the 'new' 319s)  which many people cannot sit in without coming into contact with the adjacent passenger. Trains of this type used by Arriva Trains Wales have been re-fitted with 2+2 seating, a great improvement.

The Government's requirements for the new franchise also require at least 50% of services to be converted by 2019 to 'driver-only operation' - the driver being in full charge of the train including the opening and closing of the doors. A conductor would sell tickets and look after passengers, but a train could still run if a conductor was not available. This has, predictably, led to threats of industrial action by the conductors' union, the RMT, starting with a 24-hour strike on 13 March.

As for stations, we understand that Transport for Greater Manchester have ambitions to take over the leases on station buildings within Greater Manchester from Northern, by analogy to what has been done in Merseyside. Why this would be an improvement, we are not sure.

01 March 2017

Steam through Davenport




A steam-hauled excursion passed through Davenport on 25 February, heading to Buxton via Hazel Grove and Chinley.
25 February 2017



It's pleasing to see that the Council have laid some improved footpaths across the green between Kennerley Road and Davenport Park; it's now possible to reach the seats without wallowing in mud. The path leading to the Davenport Park houses was partly funded by the Davenport Park Committee; the one past the seats was (it is rumoured) laid by the contractors due to a misunderstanding.
Update 7 March 2017

St George's Vicarage - saved?


The following message is from John Fidler, organiser of the petition reported below:

As of 17:15 on, Monday 30th January 2017, the online and hard copy petition  signatures to save St. George's Vicarage, Stockport totalled 502 - a fewmore  than when we submitted the petition to Stockport Council earlier that afternoon. 

We just received good news that the architect-developers, Purcell, and their  client, the Chester Diocesan Board of Education, have withdrawn their demolition  application today (as our petition suggested) before Stockport Council could determine the case.

Objections to demolition had been received from Historic England, the Victorian  Society and the Ancient Monuments Society, besides, in this petition:275 concerned Stockport citizens (55% of all petitioners) of whom well over half live near to or regularly pass by the Vicarage site;
47 neighbouring Mancunians;
At least nine eminent architectural historians expert in Victorian and Edwardian architecture;
20 prominent architects and conservation officers;
Numerous members of the Victorian Society nationwide (from Lerwick in the Shetlands to St. Helier in Jersey; and
The Stockport diaspora, including renowned authoress and media star, Baroness Joan Bakewell.
The Stockport Heritage and Building Preservation Trusts have asked Stockport Council to intervene now and call a meeting with the  architect-developers and the Diocese to discuss appropriate and sufficient enabling development to repair and restore the Vicarage. Or suffer the service  of a Repairs Notice to stem the awful longstanding neglect of the listed building.

31 January 2017


Steam specials


There was a steam-hauled excursion run by the Railway Touring company advertised to pass through Davenport on Saturday 4 February. However, it has been cancelled due to insufficient bookings. There's another planned for Saturday 28th February using locos 76084 and 45690: Preston - Stockport - Buxton - Burnley - Preston - Manchester. Will that one run? Who can say. Information and booking via the Railway Touring Company website. The cheapest adult ticket is £99, which rises to £249 should you wish to enjoy the full meals service. Perhaps the lack of bookings for the earlier tour is not so surprising?

Further afield, there is to be a very interesting experiment on the line from Leeds to Appleby over three days, 14 - 16 February: the normal Northern Railway train service, with added extras, will be worked between Skipton and Appleby by a seven-coach train hauled by new-build steam loco 60163 Tornado, with normal Northern Rail tickets valid in three of carriages, although no standing will be allowed. Tickets for the other four carriages are now available by only pre-booking. Full details are on the Northern website.
30 January 2017

St George's Vicarage




A planning application (No. 64183  on the Council database)  has been made by developer Purcell to demolish the listed, but derelict, Vicarage by St George's Church and replace it by two rows of 'Arts and Crafts' houses inspired, according to the archirects, by Letchworth Garden City and Port Sunlight. The picture above is the view from Bramhall Lane, from their 'Design and Access Statement.'

Nice, isn't it. We are not sure. There is an online petition which you may possibly wish to sign, proposing that the vicarage be retained and rebuilt as part of a housing development. Oddly, it is man living in Amercia who has cared enough to raise this petition. Some might be moved to think that the owners of the building have been negligent in allowing it to get in the the present state, even though they claim to have spent over £200,000 on security measures. Other developers have looked and the place and been refused their plans or walked away; one thing is sure, it should not remain as it is.

24 January 2017


New local history feature

We have compiled for our local history section a short history of Davenport's Post Office on Bramhall Lane, which has been serving the community in the same building for over 110 years, with some history if its near neiggbours. As always, comments and corrections are welcome at info@davenportstation.org.uk. In particular, does anyone recall shopping at John Williams & Sons grocery (now Spar) in the 1960s?

5 January 2017

More for your money


It's not just the fares that have increased - so has the size of tickets issued by train conductors - a return ticket is now 15 inches long!

Fares shock (2)

Annoyingly, Northern Railway's off-peak fares within Greater Manchester, already increased in September 2016, were hiked up again from 2 January, meaning that an Off-peak return to Manchester has risen from £3.50 to £4.50 since summer 2016, on top of the evening peak restrictions imposed in 2014.  Northern say that this is to 'bring them into line with other areas.' This will mean that if you are travelling to Manchester and back five times (or more) in a week, even if all your travel is off-peak times, it will be cheaper to buy a Weekly Season ticket. 

02 January 2017


To the News Archive for earlier items