Thanet Parkway station added to Southeastern journey planner ahead of July 31 opening

Thanet Parkway station Photo Frank Leppard

Thanet Parkway station has now been added to Southeastern’s online journey planner and tickets for services to and from Thanet Parkway will be able to be bought from 1 July, ahead of its opening on July 31.

As an introductory offer, customers will be offered free parking at the station from the opening day for a limited time.

The new station has been the subject of contention since it was first mooted in 2010. There were widespread objections from Thanet county councillors and residents in the area, who said the two-platform station is not needed when Thanet already has seven stations.

Costs for the project soared from an initial £11.2 million to  £34million. Last November a further £875,000 was granted to Network Rail for the scheme to help overcome cost increases due to the impacts of the COVID pandemic, Brexit, and inflation.

The station, which was initially due to open this May, has two 250 metre platforms that can accommodate 12-car trains, and will offer services to St Pancras International via Ashford International in 70 minutes and mainline connections to London terminals and across Kent and the Medway towns.

There are lifts and stairs to access the platforms, ticket vending machines, waiting shelters, acoustic barriers, parking for 293 vehicles, bus stops, pick-up and drop-off zones, electric charging points, hearing loops, cycle storage, CCTV, seating, landscaping works and passenger help points to provide remote assistance for those who need it.

Parking includes 16 spaces for Blue Badge holders  and a number of charging points for electric vehicles.

Pick up and drop off zones have also been set out, along with a station bus stop which will be served by an electric minibus shuttle to Discovery Park.

The station is accessed from the A299 Hengist Way with a new pedestrian and cycleway to and from Clive Road in Cliffsend village.

Acoustic barriers have been installed to absorb noise impact and provide privacy for lineside neighbours once train services start operating from the station.

Network Rail says  that the station provides the potential for an integrated transport hub in the future.

Platform 1

Cliffsend and Sevenscore level crossings have been upgraded. At Cliffsend the current automatic half barriers are being replaced with full barriers with CCTV controlled from East Kent Signalling Centre in Gillingham.

The station and level crossing works has been jointly funded by the Government’s Department for Transport (DfT); South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP); Government’s Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities; Thanet District Council; East Kent Spatial Development Company; and Kent County Council.

The investment is part of Network Rail’s Thanet Corridor Enhancements Programme which includes upgrades to Dibleys, Ships Meadow and Grove Ferry crossings to permit line speed increases between Ashford, Canterbury West and Ramsgate.

The government funding, which was allocated via the South East Local Enterprise Partnership (SELEP), was redistributed after projects in Sussex and Essex stalled.

Waiting shelter

David Davidson, Network Rail’s Kent route director, said: “It’s fantastic that Thanet Parkway will be opening next month, Kent’s first new station in eight years.

“The opening of this station is testament to the collaborative working relationship between our partners and Thanet Parkway will play a central role in helping boost the local economy and support tourism by providing connections to a wide range of leisure destinations.

“I look forward to seeing the first passengers using Thanet Parkway and would like to thank the many colleagues involved who have worked so hard with our partners in opening this new station.”

Bike storage

Councillor Rick Everitt, Leader of Thanet District Council, said: “Thanet Parkway represents a major statement of confidence in Thanet’s future by national and regional funders. This significant investment could easily have gone elsewhere in the South East. It has come to Thanet because the strength of the business case for this station was widely recognised.

“Thanet Parkway will supplement our existing stations and provide new opportunities for residents who do not currently have easy access to them, without extending existing journey times for those who do not need to use it.

“It means fewer people will need to drive to Ramsgate Station, in particular, and park in nearby residential roads. The new station will make Thanet a more attractive prospect for people looking to relocate to the district.”


Steve White, Southeastern’s managing director, said: “We’re excited to begin services at Thanet Parkway, some 90 years after the people of Cliffsend last had their own railway station.

“Working with our partners to enable the communities on our network to thrive is important to us, and Thanet Parkway will offer a live example of what can be achieved. All day highspeed services to St Pancras and peak services to London Bridge, Cannon Street and Charing Cross will bring new opportunities to experience the area’s tourist attractions as well as the many business and employment opportunities nearby.”

The history beneath the site: Archaeological excavation begins at site of Thanet Parkway Station

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  1. I fail to see how encouraging 293 cars a day to drive to Cliffsend is helping net zero, or why it is better for the environment having train users park in Cliffsend residential streets as opposed to Ramsgate residential streets, which is what will happen after the free parking period is ended.
    It is a station that majority of Thanet residents didn’t want, but it was foisted on the community by Paul Carter and his clique by KCC

    • I regularly read comments on here that state what the majority of Thanet residents do or don’t want. Could you say where you got this information please. I’ve lived in Thanet for 50 years & I can assure you that nobody has even asked my opinion on this.

        • A quick search revealed a written report on the results of the research by KCC. That states the following:
          45% for
          38% against
          12% neither for or against
          6% didn’t know
          I know that adds up to 101%, that’s KCC for you I guess.
          However, the total number that took part in the survey is only 379.
          So, out of the people that where surveyed only roughly 144 said that they didn’t want this station.
          I don’t know the total number of Thanet residents, but I do know that 144 is far from the majority.
          Do you have any other evidence to support your claim?

    • John, have seen how many people actually live in Cliffsend these days? It’s not the sleepy hamlet it was 20 years ago.

  2. The Network Rail spokesman reckons this new station will support tourism.

    Has he forgotten that this will be an impersonal, unhelpful, unwelcoming destination for any normal tourist, because it will be UNSTAFFED? Or are the modern rail bosses unable to differentiate between humans and robots?

    • Support tourism ! What is the there at cliffsend that tourists will flick to ?

      St Austin’s cross ?

      Whens the first but of banksy going to appear lol

    • Gary, time is running out. You need to get out and capture the landscape with your camera before it all disappears!

      Unless you find forests of Barratt homes easy on the eye.

  3. Remote assistance for passengers.That’s as encouraging as waiting for an ambulance or the Police. All this festering for 20 odd years plan has achieved is more building on top grade agricultural land and turning Thanet’s rural character in a concrete conurbation by sea. Neither does the new housing meet necessary zero carbon ratings nor will it go anyway to solving our desperate housing crisis. Driven by easy profits for the building trade and tax revenue to prop up an ever increasingly useless local authority for the sake of an empathy and humanity free, market economy.

    • Oops! I missed an important bit …
      There will be an electric minibus service between the Parkway and Discovery Park.
      There is currently no bus service connecting Sandwich station with Discovery Park.

  4. I am sure the residents of Cliffsend, Minster, Acol and probably Sandwich will use this station. It’s here now, the money has been spent so just accept it.

    • Erm, Minster has its own station, as does Sandwich, and Acol is a short drive to Birchington. I’m NOT against the station, as Cliffsend is forever expanding, but it won’t be of much use to many other areas.

      • Minster has it’s own station? Not for long as I can’t see them allowing it to stay open after the new station is open. Will Sandwich go the same way?

        • They will *NOT* close any train stations. Unlike buses, scrapping of railway stations never happens anymore… unless YOU can think of a recent example?

    • When thestation was originally mooted, we were told by both local and national politicians of a variety of flavours that THP (as it’s known) was being built in order to reduce journey times between Thanet and London.
      The absurdity of this comment was challenged over and over again. Eventually it was acknowledged that journey times would be improved by a National Rail initiative that would improve track and signalling between Ramsgate and Ashford.
      But now we know the real reason (possibly) – hundreds of new houses for London commuters at Cliffsend.

        • Nothing particularly wrong with commuters having facilities to commute; but since there are no pubs, shops or other amenities anywhere near this station, those commuters will probably be spending all their money in London not in Thanet. They will be occupying former green open spaces and using their homes as crashpads. How will the Isle of Thanet get any benefit from this?

    • The residents of Cliffsend, Minster etc will doubtless carry on driving, just as they always have.
      It would be wonderful if far more people used the train and other transport.

      • Did you see all the history that was destroyed
        Did you ever know the real history of why tdc wasted money..



    • I live in Acol and I cannot imagine using this station unless there is a regular bus service to it that runs from early morning to late at night. The fact that only trains that run between Ramsgate and London stop at this station makes this a limited service.

      I am not suggesting that this station has not got potential but, from my personal perspective, it will not be a major asset unless it provides direct services around the Thanet rail loop and on the Javelin services via Folkestone and is accessible by bike or bus.

      I’m holding off judgement for 5 years or so, by which time ther servies may have improved. Until then I will keep walking to Birchington Station.

  5. I’ve just been looking at the timetable.
    If you want to go to Sturry from THP, you have to take a train back to Ramsgate, then a slow train to Sturry.
    A wonderful service.

  6. People in Thanet complain when houses are built without expanding the infrastructure yet when there is investment in part of the infrastructure they complain 🤷🏻‍♀️🤷🏻‍♀️

    As a relative newcomer I am looking forward to a passenger airport with shuttle connections to the Parkway station for travellers not wanting to use their car.

    • In the unlikely event of Manston reopening, it will be for freight.
      In the even more unlikely event of Manston offering passenger services, a far more useful shuttle bus connection would be to Ramsgate, from whence journeys to several London termini are possible, and journeys to Dover, through the middle of Kent and along the north Kent coast.

    • And just where will these rail passengers have travelled *from*, in order to avail themselves of the (non existent) pax flights from Manton?

    • Newbie

      Where have you heard about a passenger airport with a shuttle service from cliffsend. I missed this news

    • Get used to it. It’s always the same 4 individuals on this platform continuously complaining.

      Honestly they could win the lottery and their favourite pastime would still be to come on here and complain, belittle and attempt to bully others with some form of weird, self entitled narcissism. Because God help anyone having a different opinion to their own. They can’t be wrong, you see..

    • Infrastructure is great but this bit is very far away from the homes being built.
      As for passenger flights at Manston, have you read RSP’s business plan? The only passengers will be frozen animals in cargo holds.

      • No it’s not. It is literally is about a 3 minute walk from the nearest new houses. Go check for yourself with a watch. I have.

  7. Those platforms look a bit shallow. It would appear that South Eastern are not expecting many passengers 🤣 I guess if the trains were 12 carriages long (they rarely are) then you could move down the platform but there doesn’t seem to be much room to pass? Hopefully it’s just the photograph that makes the platform look narrow and unsafe 🤷🏻‍♂️

  8. Good news there are bus stops bad news no bus service. Bus stops will only be used for bus Replacement services when station is closed.with no staff and no live security you and your car are at serious risk as there are no residents nearby unlike the 7 yes 7 existing urban stations in thanet you’ve been warned.

      • As a councillor part of my job is to protect my constituents. I do not believe thanet parkway is a save space especially for vulnerable residents and women on their own.

      • Ah one of the facts = fear mongering crowd.

        Nothing he has said is incorrect.

        I suspect it 3-4 years this station will be mothballed permanently due to issues that everyone can already see

  9. When this was first proposed the estimate was around £ was also located nearer to Ramsgate and might have included a park and ride.
    Each version of the scheme became more expensive and less environmentally friendly.
    The design is poor as it has used 2 platforms and lifts when a single large island platform is the norm for stations built on embankments
    This means that should one lift fail the whole edifice is in trouble.i would not want to be a vulnerable person travelling to that station.
    It is also ugly and dominates the sky line.
    If you are going to issue transport plans KCC,you ought to read them and ensure there is connectivity between the modes of transport.
    To those who say that any old design will do and that we should all accept shoddy designs and planning then nothing will change in Thanet or East Kent.
    It’s poor value for money and will blight local transport planning for decades

  10. Surely it’s slower now from Ramsgate because the train has to stop just as it leaves parking for a short time but it will take you 1 hour to drive back through Westwood

  11. Great to have a new station, really good for those of us without cars. But my goodness it’s the ugliest station ever, a giant Mecanno set. Compare this new station with the beautiful architecture of Margate & Ramsgate stations …. What’s going on with this country? Are we going backwards?

    • If you think that looks bad, check out the raw concrete walls at Stratford station, it looks like the view from the cafe at Turner Contemporary! The days of the ornate and beautifully tiled Victorian stations is sadly long over.

      I largely welcome the station… but, trains going towards Margate and beyond will terminate in Ramsgate, requiring a change of trains! If they want to entice people, they need to bring back the through trains from Dover that we had pre-pandemic.

      • your not wrong about Stratford–its horrific–like something youd expect in Soviet East Europe–thought they might brighten the walls with advertsing–but no!

    • Dave,if you haven’t got a car , it’s virtually impossible to get to thanet parkway station as there is no bus service . 95 per cent of thanet residents have to drive past an existing station to get to new white elephant station

      • I moved here from another extremely deprived part of the country. Not from London. From the North. In the North we would have cherished the facilities available to us in Thanet.

        The biggest difference, other than facilities, that I have observed since moving south, is the attitude and outlook of the people. It is just so grumpy and negative down here.

        Whatever your views on whether this should or should not have been built, or indeed on anything else that has already happened, could you, as a councillor, not at least try to be positive and optimistic about something in Thanet?

        Be part of the play not always part of the Greek chorus! Find your inner Pollyanna!

        • Newbie – how right you are in your observations- Mr Lewis is a prime example of why Thanet never seems to move forward – same old Councillors on a roundabout .

          • Where have you been?
            We most certainly don’t have the “Sam old” councillors!
            We’ve had Labour, UKIP (the only Local Authority to do so), Toy then Labour again. Plus smattering of Greens nd independents.

        • Newbie

          So in your opinion if people dont agree with you they are moaning. Sounds abit like a dictatorship

          • What a strange comment. Are you OK? I was just observing that the vast majority of comments were negative and that I was finding this sad, particularly as an attitude from those we vote in to represent us in order to make things better for the community. Your weird comment is perhaps a perfect example of the unhappy and unnecessary belligerence I have witnessed since moving south. Is it something in the water??

          • Newbie, have you ever visited the site where this station has been built? If not then you should hurry up before its beauty vanishes forever. When you realise that all the farmland, sea views, green spaces are being gobbled up you will understand the negativity in this thread.

        • There is very little to be positive and optimistic about , regarding this new railway station.

  12. I have concerns around how many RTA’s will occur when the Traffic Lights change to Red on this busy road. Many people will not be prepared for this.
    Please be careful everyone

    • Beachbum

      It wont only be at the traffic lights but also at sevenscore and lord of the manor roundabouts.

      These roundabouts will now become U turn roundabouts for the station.

      Drivers from ramsgate gate will have to use sevenscore to get back to ramsgate. People from the monkton side will need to use lord of the manor to come back to the station.

      Bonkers road planning on two very busy roundabouts

  13. Has anyone else noticed that only the St Pancras trains will stop there for most of the day with the stopping services to Ashford, Canterbury & Dover not calling at the station other than a few peak time services?

    It’s hard to believe that 35 million could be spent on an unstaffed station that 2 out 3 trains will not stop at for most of thr day.

  14. “Network Rail says that the station provides the potential for an integrated transport hub in the future”

    All part of the future with Smart(15 minute)Cities.

    Google it, if your interested.

  15. 15- minute towns/cities sound like an excellent idea. The idea is to have areas where basic necessities such as doctors’ practices, dentists, libraries etc, as well as shops, are within easy walking distance.

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