Leeds has been named in the top-three busiest UK rail stations outside London, according to statistics revealed by the rail regulator (ORR).
Network Rail said that the findings reflect the city’s vibrancy and showed why they are working to make future generations proud of the station.
The ORR findings showed the total number of passenger entries and exits over the course of a year. Leeds’ total was 28,847,648, which was a leap up from the previous year’s tally of 27,729,632.
The news comes at a time when there are plans for a new entrance at Leeds Station and the eventual arrival of HS2. The only places outside London which were ahead of Leeds - which was 12th busiest in the UK - were Birmingham New Street and Glasgow Central.
Rachel Lowe, a spokesperson for Network Rail, said: “Leeds is an incredibly busy and vibrant station, reflecting the great city which is serves.
“The new southern entrance which opens in the new year will transform the gateway to Leeds for thousands of passengers and our longer term plans are even more ambitious.
“We know how important good access to rail travel is as a driver of economic success and will continue to work with stakeholders and businesses in Leeds to make sure the city has a station of which it can be proud for generations to come.”
Network Rail set out proposals earlier this year for a £100 million package of improvements that would see the creation of a three-storey entrance, the installation of a new mezzanine floor and an opaque roof.
Leeds Station would eventually have to be transformed to accommodate new high-speed rail lines as part of the HS2 project.
London Waterloo had the most passenger entries and exits last year at 99.2 million, according to the ORR. The 10 busiest stations are all in the capital apart from Birmingham New Street. The total number of entries and exits at Britain’s stations increased by 4.5% to reach 2.8 billion.
The top 20
1. Waterloo, Greater London: 99,201,604 (98,442,742)
2. Victoria, Greater London: 85,337,996 (81,356,330)
3. Liverpool Street, Greater London: 63,631,246 (63,004,002)
4. London Bridge, Greater London: 49,517,854 (56,442,044)
5. Charing Cross, Greater London: 42,978,890 (40,170,074)
6. Euston, Greater London: 42,952,298 (41,911,706)
7. Paddington, Greater London: 35,724,684 (35,093,628)
8. Birmingham New Street, West Midlands: 35,312,788 (34,748,984)
9. King’s Cross, Greater London: 31,346,862 (29,833,456)
10. Stratford, Greater London: 30,974,204 (26,377,506)
11. Glasgow Central, Glasgow: 28,964,760 (27,152,694)
12. Leeds, West Yorkshire: 28,847,648 (27,729,632)
13. St Pancras, Greater London: 28,241,930 (26,046,082)
14. Clapham Junction, Greater London: 26,465,840 (25,287,250)
15. Manchester Piccadilly, Greater Manchester: 24,614,970 (24,476,137)
16. East Croydon, Greater London: 22,766,996 (21,797,194)
17. Cannon Street, Greater London: 22,129,604 (20,689,022)
18. Vauxhall, Greater London: 21,111,416 (19,401,716)
19. Edinburgh Waverley, Edinburgh: 21,106,540 (20,012,302)
20. Highbury & Islington, Greater London: 19,975,522 (15,840,018)