Stratford station, east London’s railway station, was more busy than Waterloo last year due to the pandemic that saw passengers numbers drop to their lowest level in 150 years.

Travels declined by 78%, to 388million in the March year, against 1,739million for 2019-20. Since 1872 when the first figures were published, numbers haven’t been this low.

It was also the first time in 17 years that Waterloo, which serves a number of commuter towns south west of London, did not top the list of most-used stations – with journeys falling from 86.9 million in 2019-20 to 12.2 million. 

Stratford Railway Station in East London was busier than Waterloo in the UK last year, as the pandemic caused passenger numbers to plummet to their lowest point in 150 years.

Stratford, a key interchange, recorded nearly 14 million journeys, although this was down by 67 per cent.

Stratford, a crucial interchange, saw almost 14 million trips, but this figure was only 67% lower than it had been.

Stratford, a crucial interchange, saw almost 14 million trips, but this figure was only 67% lower than it had been.

According to the Office of Rail and Road’s figures, which are mostly based on ticket sales and show that five stations had more than 10,000,000 journeys and six did not.

Feras Alshaker, the department’s director of communications said that while leisure travels have almost returned to pre-pandemic levels but there has been an increase in commuter trips.

With 7.4 million passengers, Birmingham New Street was London’s busiest station.

Glasgow Central, with 5.3 million users in Scotland, was the most visited station. Cardiff Central (2.0 million) was Wales’ top choice.

These figures were based on ticket sales.

It was the first time in 17 years that Waterloo, which serves a number of commuter towns south west of London, did not top the list of most-used stations ¿ with journeys falling from 86.9 million in 2019-20 to 12.2 million.

It was the first time in 17 years that Waterloo, which serves a number of commuter towns south west of London, did not top the list of most-used stations – with journeys falling from 86.9 million in 2019-20 to 12.2 million.

“We have seen radical changes, particularly in London in stations that people use the most,” Mr. Alshaker said.

Stratford, Highbury, Islington Clapham Junction Barking, East Croydon and Clapham Junction were the new top 10 – a clear indication of their vitality as crucial stops and interchanges linking workers to Underground and bus travel.

Andy Bagnall is director-general of industry group the Rail Delivery Group. He stated: “The station usage figures demonstrate how people were kept moving during the initial year of the pandemic.

Stratford, Highbury and Islington, Clapham Junction (pictured), Barking and East Croydon replaced Kings Cross, St Pancras, Euston and Paddington in the top 10 busiest stations

Stratford, Highbury, Islington (pictured), Clapham Junction, Barking, East Croydon, Kings Cross, St Pancras and Euston were replaced by Paddington and St Pancras in the Top 10 Busiest Stations

“Some of the entries in the list are indicative of where key workers traveled from, and of how changes have been made to the way people travel following the pandemic.

“Rail companies work together to welcome back people and the increase in passengers continues both to reflect and to support the country’s recovery.”

Six stations did not have passengers in 2020/21, due to suspended services because of the viral crisis.

These were: Abererch and Gwynedd, Beasdale and Highland, Llanbedr and Gwynedd, Sampford Courtenay in Devon, Stanlow and Thornton in Cheshire, and Sugar Loaf and Powys.

Last year, the least used station in Norfolk was Berney Arms. This is despite its passengers usage increasing eight-fold from 42 to 334.

It was the highest percentage increase for any station in comparison to the previous year.