The Station concourse in the 1950's.
The Midland Railway's architect Charles Trubshaw designed a large complex containing the passenger station, goods station, and the Midland Hotel which opened in 1890. The station had six platforms and an overall glazed roof of the ridge and furrow pattern; the roof was dismantled in the 1960s and replaced with utilitarian 'butterfly' awnings. The station was also used by the North Eastern Railway. The station began to be called Market Street Station at this time, but local maps and directories do not confirm this.
By 1906, Forster Square had been built just south-east of the station, but the name Forster Square Station was not used until 1924.
In March 1963, the Beeching Report recommended closure of all railways serving Wharfedale, and of several other services out of Forster Square; during 1965 many stations closed, and local services to Leeds ceased. But for some of the lines the decision was deferred, and trains continued to run - in the event, for eight years. In 1972 Bradford Corporation (now City of Bradford Metropolitan District Council), together with several other local authorities in the area, determined to subsidise the Wharfedale and Airedale lines. The lines have remained open, and in the ensuing years a number of stations have been reopened. From April 1974, the new West Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (now known as Metro) took responsibility for these services.
The current Forster Square Station, a modern three-platform station, was built in 1990 somewhat to the north of the former station; the latter was demolished two years later to make way for a £90 million shopping centre. That development was never built, and the site remained derelict for some years and has latterly been used as a car park. Part of the screen arcade that fronted the 1890 station remains, as does the Midland Hotel; and in 2005 these became much more visible when the city centre redevelopment began and Forster House was demolished. It is unclear how visible they will remain as the development continues.
The line into Forster Square was electrified in 1994, as part of the electrification of the Airedale Line and Wharfedale Line, and allowing through electric trains to London via the newly-electrified East Coast Main Line.
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