The Cambridgeshire town that used to have 3 train stations but now has none

Wisbech in Cambridgeshire
-Credit: (Image: Cambridge News)

Cambridge is set to welcome its third train station, Cambridge South, in 2025. However, the story is quite different for another location in Cambridgeshire.

Wisbech has seen its number of stations decrease from three to none since the last one shut its doors in 1968. Once home to three railway stations - Wisbech North, Wisbech East, and the Wisbech and Upwell Tramway - Wisbech now finds itself without any. Railfuture East Anglia is currently campaigning for a tram-train network to connect Wisbech to Cambridge.

The proposed network would include a service running every half an hour between Wisbech and Cambridge, as per Railfuture's plans. A petition calling for the reopening of Wisbech rail has already garnered over 4,000 signatures.

Here's a look at the history of the town's former stations.

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Wisbech North

Part of the Midland and Great Northern Joint Railway, Wisbech North railway station was located on Harecroft Road and served as a stop on the line between Sutton Bridge and Peterborough.

It first opened its doors in 1866 under the name Wisbeach, before being renamed Wisbech in 1877, and finally becoming Wisbech North in 1948. The station ceased passenger services in 1959, and freight services followed suit five years later.

Wisbech Station in the 60s
Wisbech Station in the 60s -Credit:Public Domain

Wisbech East

Established in 1848, Wisbech East provided connections to March, Watlington, and St Ives, and was part of the Great Eastern Railway network.

In 1851, two temporary structures were combined under one company when operation was handed over to the Eastern Counties Railway by two companies. The station was eventually closed in 1968.

Wisbech and Upwell Tramway

The first section of the tramway was inaugurated in 1883, following the construction of new sidings and a brick engine shed for trams journeying from Wisbech station (later known as Wisbech North). The station comprised an engine shed and a turntable.

By 1925, only the turntable remained when the London and North Eastern Railway assumed control of the line. The tramway ceased operations in 1966, many years after passenger services were halted in 1927.

Wisbech Rail Reopening Campaign

Railfuture is spearheading the campaign to reinstate rail services in Wisbech. The petition has been submitted to Cambridgeshire County Council and the second phase of a study to ascertain the cost of reopening the line is set to be released this summer.

Campaigners argue that Wisbech is disadvantaged due to its inadequate transport links to Cambridge.