Wednesday, September 24, 2008

When GMEX was Manchester Central

While I was a student at York (the year was probably 1980) a couple of friends returned from a trip to Manchester enthusing about what they had found - a huge disused station with a train shed on the scale of St Pancras. It was standing empty and just being used as a car park.

This was Manchester Central. Today it is better known as GMEX, the venue of the Labour Conference this week.

Subterranea Britannica (from which I have borrowed the photograph) has the history of the station:

From Manchester Central trains ran on the CLC network to Liverpool, Chester and Stockport. The Midland railway ran express trains to London St. Pancras.

These trains continued until 1968 when they were diverted to Manchester Piccadilly but after a few years discontinued. One of the most famous trains to run in the second part of the 20th Century was the Midland Blue Pullman introduced in 1960 which ran from the station until 1966 by which time the West Coast Main line had been electrified.

1 comment:

James Graham (Quaequam Blog!) said...

Actually, the GMEX has been re-renamed Manchester Central now. But confusingly, the Metrolink station outside it is still called GMEX.