Ormskirk station was built by the East Lancashire Railway's Liverpool, Ormskirk and Preston Junction section, and opened on 2 April 1849. From 13 May 1859, the station was owned by the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway. From 1 January 1923 the station was owned by the London, Midland and Scottish Railway. British Railways nationalised all railways on 1 January 1948 and the station became part of the London Midland Region. A branch line to Rainford Junction via Skelmersdale was opened by the ELR in March 1858 shortly before it was absorbed by the L & YR – this left the main line to Preston just to the north of the station. The line from Liverpool was subsequently electrified in 1913, with the suburban EMUs using a bay platform at the southern end of the station to keep them clear of the busy main line to Preston, which was used as the L & Y's principle route to East Lancashire, the Fylde, Cumbria and Scotland. The original Liverpool terminus of the line (Liverpool Exchange) was closed in 1977, when the route became one of the three branches of the new Northern Line and trains began running to a new underground terminus at Liverpool Central. Since 1996, it has been part of the Merseyrail franchise currently (2016) run by Serco-Abellio.
The current station consists of a single platform. An interesting characteristic is how the electric Merseyrail track and the unelectrified Northern track is on the same alignment, with electric and diesel trains using opposite ends of the same platform. The line is cut by a large buffer separating the track sections. Passengers wishing to transfer from an electric train to diesel train walk a dozen yards or so along the same platform to move between trains. (A similar layout exists at Kirkby.) Prior to the Beeching Report of 1963 and the subsequent restructuring of the rail network, there were two main through platforms, and the electric commuter trains would pull into the southern bay platform. This practice ended following the withdrawal of through trains between Liverpool and Preston via this route – local services from Preston, East Lancashire & Blackpool towards Liverpool were either withdrawn or curtailed here from October 1969 and the last through trains ran on 3 May 1970. From the following day, the line was split here and all trains now use the former Liverpool platform (the Preston-bound Up platform remains in situ, but is disused). The bay platform is now a footpath leading to the bus station. Though only a single line runs into the platform, the route towards Liverpool becomes double just outside the station. The line towards Preston has though been single track since the summer of 1970, except for a passing loop located at Rufford. The former link between Ormskirk and Southport, via the Burscough Curves, was closed in 1962. The Skelmersdale Branch has also been lost, having closed to passengers in 1956 and to all traffic seven years later. It was lifted in 1968, though the Burscough curves remained extant until the mid-1980s.
The station is an interchange between Merseyrail services from Liverpool Central and Northern services from Preston over the Ormskirk branch line and is located 12.75 miles (20.5 km) northeast of Liverpool Central Low Level. The station building and three arch road bridge are both Grade II listed structures. Services to Liverpool Central operate frequently, running every 15 minutes during the day (Monday to Saturday) and every 30 minutes at other times (evenings and Sundays). Services to Preston are irregular, with a total of 12 services in each direction Monday–Saturday, and no service on Sundays.
Ormskirk station has full disabled access. The ticket office and platforms are step free, however the car park has uneven ramp access. There is an induction loop, help point, and lost property. The station underwent a £1.5 million renovation during 2009. Among the refurbishments include a new booking hall, waiting room, toilet facilities, ticket counters and new automatic swinging doors, as well as a remodelled and landscaped path and bicycle route up to the bus interchange. The station is classed as eco-friendly and gets its green credentials by using a system that harvests rainwater, as well as other various energy-saving measures. The station is staffed, 15 minutes before the first train and 15 minutes after the last train, and has platform CCTV. There is a payphone, waiting room, booking office and live departure and arrival screens, for passenger information. The station has a free car park, with 108 spaces, as well as a 2-space cycle rack and secure storage for 28 cycles. The station and platforms have full disabled access but the car park has uneven ramp access. Bus Connection Timetable. Or NextBus for live departures.
Local Taxis: 01695 573 333
Connections: 2A, 3A, 6, 75, 76, 311, 315, 319, 375, 385, 395