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Walsall Train Station
Member Name: loopy-lou33
Walsall Train Station
Advantages: Good location. Good service.
Disadvantages: Platforms a bit dark.
I don't drive, so rely on the public transport network to take me where I want to go. One service I find particularly useful is the rail link between Walsall, where I live, and Birmingham New Street Station.
Walsall station is a small station, with three platforms. Most of the trains run along the main line that has Birmingham at one end and Stafford at the other. You can also occasionaly catch a direct train to London from Walsall at this station, as well as trains to nearby Wolverhampton.
The entrance to the station, as well as the ticket booth, are located in the Saddlers Centre, which is the main shopping centre in Walsall. There is also access to the platforms via nearby station street. You can buy tickets from the booth directly, or from a ticket vending machine located nearby. The ticket office opening times are as follows:
Weekdays and Saturdays: 05:45-00:05
There is good access to the platforms for wheelchair users or those with pushchairs, as there is a long ramp that runs down from the ticket office area to the platforms. There are also steps for those who wish to use them.
There is a seated waiting area, but it is quite stark and dingy. The area by the platforms themselves is, and always has been, very dark and would benefit from better lighting. Fortunately, you don't need to wait long, as the trains run very regularly. There are four trains an hour running south to Birmingham, and two running north. Some of the trains stop at all of the stations on the line, whereas others, described as "semi fast" only stop at one or two stations on the way.
The station is advertised as having toilet facilities, but I can't confirm or deny this, as I certainly have never seen them or had reason to use them! I know for definite that Marks and Spencers, which is next to the ticket office, has excellent toilet facilities, and I would be more inclined to use these if I really needed to go to the loo.
Because the station is small, it has not restaurant or cafe, although it does have a small shop next to the ticket booth that sells sweets and newspapers. The Saddlers centre has a couple of cafes within close proximity to the station, including Firkins and Druckers, for hungry travellers! There is also a Mc Donalds about 5 minutes walk away in Walsall town centre.
Information access is very good, with easy access to timetables, and lots of boards with up to date train arrival times flashing up to inform passengers of the latest information.
In conclusion, Walsall station may be small, but it is an appropriate size for the area it serves. It is located in a good central location, with easy access to shops and amenities. The main line has many places of interest to stop off at, including Stafford, Rugely, Perry Bar and Birmingham. The trains usually run on time and are clean and comfortable.
I usually buy a family ticket that gets me and the kids on all the trains and buses in the midlands area for £8.50.
Summary: A great way to travel.
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