NEWS ROUNDUP: Leeds station still the busiest
|Leeds railway station remained the most used station across Yorkshire during a year that saw Britain’s passenger usage drop 78% compared to the previous year.
This was the lowest level of journeys seen since at least before 1872 and is a result of the pandemic.
|The numbers are revealed in the Office of Rail and Road’s (ORR) estimates of station usage statistics 2020-21, which include the annual total of passenger entries and exits at each of the 2,500+ stations in Great Britain.
Leeds had 5.8 million passenger entries and exits between 1 April 2020 and 31 March 2021 – underlying its importance as a key interchange and destination for the British public during the pandemic – despite an 81% decrease in passenger numbers compared to 2019-20.
The top five most-used stations across the region remained the same as the previous year.
Sheffield recorded 1.9 million entries and exits, York had 1.8 million while Huddersfield and Doncaster had 1 million and 890,238 respectively.
ORR’s stats reveal Stratford railway station in London as the most used station in Britain, recording nearly 14 million entries and exits in 2020-21 (13,985,162).
It is the first time in 17 years that London Waterloo is not the most used station. The London station saw the biggest decrease in passenger usage, with 12.21 million entries and exits compared to the 86 million in 2019-20.
Across Scotland, Glasgow Central remained the most used station with 5.3 million entries and exits, down from 32.5 million in 2019-20. Edinburgh (2.9m), Glasgow Queen Street (2.3m), Paisley Gilmour Street (982,530) and new entrant Partick (634,162) were also in the top 5 most used.
In Wales, Cardiff Central also remained the busiest station during 2020-21 but saw just under 2 million entries and exits compared to more than 12 million last year. Newport in South Wales (543,356), Cardiff Queen Street (472,914), Swansea (468,824) and Bridgend (321,576) completed the top 5 most used.
Only five railway stations in Great Britain had more than 10 million entries and exits in 2020-21 compared with 43 stations in 2019-20.
A music lover who had no space for his massive music collection has converted an old post office into a rock and roll emporium – and is selling off his memorabilia.
On display at Bernard Brittain’s musical shrine are more than 500 vinyl records, amplifiers, tour posters and classic guitars including Fenders and Telecasters.
And taking pride of place in the centre of the homage to the rock and roll is a Triumph Tiger 750 motorbike he has borrowed from a friend.
Bernard, 71, began collecting records in his youth and continued his obsession well into adulthood.
And it was boosted during his days as an agent to the stars, when he organised gigs and tours for some of the biggest names in rock during a 20 year career in the music industry.
Now, after downsizing to a one-bedroom flat in Mytholmroyd, West Yorks., he has converted the old post office below it into a musical shrine and shop.
He said: “I had a three bedroom house, now I’ve got a one bedroom flat above the shop so I haven’t got room for it all.
“I always loved the music and always loved guitars, amplifiers and records.
“I suppose I had a particular time when I couldn’t help but collect stuff, I seemed to be a bit of a hoarder when it came to music.
“I don’t have room upstairs with all the stuff. I cleaned them all and have priced them accordingly.
“It’s unfortunate I’m in the position that I have to sell stuff. It’s more of practicality than money.
“I’m at the point at my age where I don’t need as much stuff.
“In the shop, there is everything to do with 50s music, from Sun records to all the artists that lovers of that era are into.”
Bernard, who was born in nearby Halifax, started playing the guitar in a band at school aged 14.
He joined the Navy at 18 and when he left, worked on oil rigs and as a painter and decorator.
But he managed to forge a career from his passion of music by promoting gigs in the local area, including hiring an arctic truck as a stage for a gig in a pub car park.
He would go to festivals across Britain handing out flyers to spread the word about shows he was arranging, which grew into him organising tours for the likes of Jerry Lee Lewis.
Looking back fondly on his days in the industry, he said: “I was in a band at school when I was 14. I joined the Navy at 18 and started playing more.
“There wasn’t a lot of promotion for rock and roll at the time, so I started putting on a couple of gigs.
“I put a gig on in a pub car park and it had more than 1,000 people in the car park. The pub ran out of beer it was that busy.
“I used to go to the festival and put fliers down for anything I was doing. I started booking bands at various venues and things got bigger and bigger and I ended up doing European tours.”
Bernard moved into his one-bedroom flat three years ago and the former post office below was at the time a chiropodist.
But after devastating floods ravaged the town, it had been empty for more than a year.
He decided to rent the space out and opened his music store on November 1 and has already seen a steady flow of customers.
Bernard is keen to encourage people to start playing guitar, and has put together a starter kit with everything anyone would need to learn.
He said: “It’s hard to hit the ground running in any business venture, but it’s been what I anticipated. It’s been quite steady.
“Some days you get nobody in for hours and then someone comes in and spends £150.
“It’s a catch 22 situation, because as I sell stuff and a space opens up on the wall, I have to buy more stuff to fill it.
“Hopefully it’ll rekindle interest in the 50s and people will like it
“Rock and roll never dies.”
(SWNS | Ashley Pemberton)
Traffic was brought to a halt on the motorway after a herd of COWS decided to take a stroll down the M62.
Christmas shoppers travelling to Leeds on the M62 last Saturday afternoon were stopped in their tracks by the animals.
An amusing clip filmed by motorist Jay McBride, 46, shows at least 10 cows strolling down the deserted motorway after leaping the barrier just before Junction 31.
One cow can be seen attempting to jump the barrier to join the travelling herd before a man in a high visibility jacket is spotted struggling to herd the cows off the road.
Motorists were treated to the amusing sight of the cows causing chaos as they were forced to wait almost an hour for the animals to evacuate the motorway.
(SWNS | Charlotte Penketh-King)
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