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Retford

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About

Retford station originally opened in 1852. However, the present buildings were built by the Great Northern Railway in 1891/ 2  in Italianate villa style favored by the GNR. It was constructed by Messrs Arnold and Sons, Doncaster at a cost of approximately £17,000.

Retford station is served by trains operating between London and York, London and Hull, Lincoln and Sheffield, and Sheffield and Cleethorpes.

What's in the Area?

In 2020 the station received listed building grade II status for the following principal reasons:

Architectural interest:

  • for the very rare survival of the original finishes in the dining room and refreshment room, notable not only for their strong aesthetic quality and fine craftsmanship but for the particularly ornate nature of their design which was not at all common for public refreshment rooms at railway stations;

  • for its remarkably long and well-balanced composition in the Italianate style and decorative ironwork on the impressive platform canopy;

  • for its association with the Goddard family’s architectural practice, whose work has been extensively recognised on the statutory List.

Historic interest:

  • for its well-preserved plan form, including the service rooms in the Stationmaster’s house, and its remarkably complete elevations with their original fenestration and platform canopy, which overall represent one of the most intact medium-sized GNR stations.

Town Lock and the walk to the town centre (15 minutes)

Leaving the station walk straight ahead down Victoria Road then turn right and cross over the River Idle. Walk along Albert Road and a footpath will appear on the left. This leads to the Chesterfield Canal at Town Lock.

The Chesterfield canal was completed in 1777 and ran from Chesterfield through Worksop and Retford to join the river Trent at West Stockwith. It remained in commercial use until the late 1950s carrying coal, stone, agricultural products, and other goods. Perhaps the most famous cargo carried on the canal was the quarried stone for the rebuilding of the Palace of Westminster in the 1830s.

Walk across the lock gate and turn right to walk along the towpath to reach the town centre. Turn left at the Bay Tree cafe and Carolgate, the main shopping street opposite, across Wharf Road.

Bassetlaw Museum located on Grove Street, a short walk from Market Square, is more than a local museum as contains the Pilgrim Gallery built for the ultimately doomed Mayflower 400 celebrations.

Four centuries ago, a small group, who can trace their roots to the Bassetlaw area decided to leave England in search of religious freedom. They sailed first to Holland, and later, in 1620, some of them sailed to America on board the Mayflower. Read about our Pilgrim Roots

Coralgate leads into the Market Square reminiscent of a Northern French market town. The Town Hall of 1866-8 is in François I 16th-century style.

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