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Merseyrail announces 7 ½ minute service to get racegoers to Aintree

15 March 2019

Our popular 7½ minute service to Aintree and our much-loved flip flops are making a comeback for this year’s Grand National.

For three days in April, all eyes will be on Liverpool for the most iconic event in the nation’s horseracing calendar. This year’s Randox Health Grand National will run from Thursday 4 April to Saturday 6 April.  

Merseyrail will be bringing back its popular 7 ½ minute service for the big event. A special train timetable will also be in operation to ensure there is minimal disruption to regular commuters going about their journeys during the three day racing weekend.

As Radio City welcomes the crowds with music and entertainment, Merseyrail’s famous flip flops will be making the rounds for commuters whose feet need some tender loving care after the day’s events.

All passengers are advised to check for timetable changes which may affect their journey and to get their tickets in advance.

Our 7 ½ minute service - Trains to and from Aintree

On Thursday 4 and Friday 5 April, a 7 ½ minute service will run between Aintree and Liverpool Central and Moorfields stations at the following times:

  • From approximately 12:00 – 13:30 before the races
  • From approximately 16:20 – 20:00 after the races

On Saturday 6 April, a 7 ½ minute service will run between Aintree and Liverpool Central and Moorfields stations at the following times: 

  • From approximately 11:30 – 13:30 before the races
  • From approximately 17:35 – 20:00 after the races

What timetable changes mean for our passengers

During the three day festival there will be some other timetable changes to some Merseyrail lines. If you’re joining the racegoers, please find the details below and plan your journey ahead. 

Ormskirk line timetable changes

  • Trains travelling from Liverpool towards Ormskirk will depart 8 minutes earlier than usual until 20:00.
  • Trains travelling from Ormskirk towards Liverpool will depart 2 minutes earlier until 20:00.
  • There will be a 30 minute service at Town Green and Aughton Park stations between 07:00 and 20:00, for train times see below.[JA1] 

Kirkby line timetable changes

  • Trains from Kirkby to Liverpool will terminate at Sandhills, where passengers can board another train to Liverpool to complete their journey. This will apply to all services between 11:28 – 13:13 and 16:28 – 19:28 on Thursday and Friday, and 10:58 – 13:13 and 17:28 – 19:28 on Saturday.
  • Trains from Liverpool to Kirkby, will start at Sandhills. Passengers should board any train for Southport at either Liverpool Central or Moorfields and change on to a Kirkby service at Sandhills. This will apply to all services between 11:50 – 13:35 and 16:50 – 19:35 on Thursday and Friday, and 11:20 – 13:35 and 17:50 – 19:05 on Saturday.

Southport line timetable changes

Trains from Brunswick towards Southport will leave stations 4 minutes later than usual at all stations until 20:30.

Ellesmere Port line timetable changes

The 16:33 and 17:33 from Moorfields to Ellesmere Port will not run on Thursday and Friday.

Andy Heath, Managing Director at Merseyrail, says:

“Merseyrail is getting ready to escort thousands of race-goers to and from the world’s biggest horse racing event. We will be running a special train timetable so that we can continue to deliver a timely service across the Liverpool City Region for regular commuters as the racing festival gets underway at Aintree.

“Our passengers will be depending on us to get them to the starting line on time. This year sees the return of our popular 7 ½ minute service between Liverpool city centre and Aintree, and our much-loved flip flops for the return journey. We are advising passengers to get their tickets in advance where possible.

“The Grand National Festival is an iconic event for the City Region and the local economy, and we are pleased to continue our commitment to enabling tens of thousands of race-goers to travel to this fantastic occasion.

“Unfortunately, due to the limited number of trains on the Merseyrail network, it’s only possible for us to both meet the demand for services to Aintree station and across the rest of the network if we make these minor changes to timetables on other lines.

“I would like to thank our customers for their patience each year when we make these necessary timetable amends to support The Grand National Festival. We can’t wait to give the crowds travelling to Aintree a warm welcome on to our network.”