‘The Stratford Upon Avon & Midland Junction Railway’ (or S.M.J.) was a small independent railway company which ran a line across the empty, untouched centre of England. It visited the counties of Northamptonshire, Warwickshire, Oxfordshire and a little of Buckinghamshire, only existing as the SMJ from 1909 to 1923. In 1923 the S.M.J.became a minor arm of the London Midland and Scottish (L.M.S.), then in 1948 'British Railways' 

Gone but not forgotten: "the damsel is not dead, but sleepeth"


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SMJ Forum

MORTON PINKNEY LEVEL CROSSING 12 Replies

There was a public level crossing between Blakesley and Morton Pinkney, complete with a gatehouse.Does anyone know how this was operated?Presumably the gates must have been manual and kept closed against road traffic.Early Working Timetables mention…Continue

Started by Barry Taylor. Last reply by Ian Merivale on Monday.

SMJ rides again? Broom to Stratford Greenway Proposal

From Bidford on Avon Parish council comes news of the Avon and Arrow Greenway Project whose latest newsletter is here: August 2020 AAGP…Continue

Started by Simon Stevens Sep 14.

Bidford-on-Avon station photos 2 Replies

Hello folks - I'm interested in sourcing any historical photos of Bidford-on-Avon station and wondering if anyone here could help point me in the right direction? (There are a few on…Continue

Started by Greg Wye. Last reply by Greg Wye Aug 30.

Stored coaches 4 Replies

This query arises from a discussion on another site (Disused Railway and Stations around Northamptonshire).There has been recent reference to coaches stored on the SMJ and a statement in Bylines March 12th issue that there were over three hundred…Continue

Started by Alan Brant. Last reply by Ian Mathews Aug 16.

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Hello

I’m intrigued by the statement found in Wikipedia

08/12/1944 Wellington LN845 –C of 11 OTU overshot a forced landing at RAF Stratford and ran onto the railway at the end of the runway. The aircraft was only lightly damaged until it was hit by a locomotive! F/Sgt C R Wagstaffe RNZAF and his crew were unhurt.

If you look at a map RAF Atherstone or Wellesbourne is about 3 km from the SMJ line; that’s quite some “overshooting”

Best regards

Jack

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RAF Atherstone's runway did end adjacent to the SMJ line - OS map aerial view so there could be a grain of truth in the story

Thanks Simon

I got confused with the other RAF airfield at Wellesbourne

My two passions in one place - trains and aeroplanes...

According to the narrative in "Royal Air Force Bomber Command Losses Vol 7" by W R Chorley.

"T/o 1955 Wescott for a night cross country. Reported to have landed roughly at 2200, at Stratford-upon-Avon airfield, touching down at least a third of the way along the duty runway, which featured a downhill gradient. This, combined with a light wind, caused the aircraft to run off the airfield and finish up with its nose overhanging the rail line. Not long afterwards the local station master chartered an engine and proceeded along the track, in order to assess the situation. Unfortunately, on reaching the scene, the driver of the locomotive was too late in applying the brakes and ran into the Wellington, which, until this point, had only been lightly damaged."

Pilot was apparently Flight Sergeant C R Wagstaffe RNZAF

Hi Gary

Thanks for this very interesting information.

I read somewhere that following this accident a signal was installed on the SMJR line and that this signal was operated by the airfield control tower; a seemingly unique case in Air / Rail interface

If you’re interested, I have a couple of photos of a Boeing 747 straddling the railway lines at Brussels National airport; I can readily send you these

Best regards

Jack

Belgium

Not as dramatic from a railway point of view but very tragic, three USAF Flying Fortresses on an in formation training flight from Snetterton collided above the SMJ between Blakesley and Moreton Pinkney on 11th October 1944. Two came down near Adstone and Woodend with the loss of their crews apart from one airman who parachuted to safety, the other limped back to an airfield with the loss of one crew member. As far as I know there was no disruption to the railway. There is a memorial to this disaster at Woodend Green.

I would indeed be interested thank you.

Jack Freuville said:

Hi Gary

Thanks for this very interesting information.

I read somewhere that following this accident a signal was installed on the SMJR line and that this signal was operated by the airfield control tower; a seemingly unique case in Air / Rail interface

If you’re interested, I have a couple of photos of a Boeing 747 straddling the railway lines at Brussels National airport; I can readily send you these

Best regards

Jack

Belgium

I used to know someone who lived at Wood End and they had a bucket of bits that kept turning up in the fields from this tragedy. I have a couple of pieces at home which act as a reminder of such troubled times.



Dick Bodily said:

Not as dramatic from a railway point of view but very tragic, three USAF Flying Fortresses on an in formation training flight from Snetterton collided above the SMJ between Blakesley and Moreton Pinkney on 11th October 1944. Two came down near Adstone and Woodend with the loss of their crews apart from one airman who parachuted to safety, the other limped back to an airfield with the loss of one crew member. As far as I know there was no disruption to the railway. There is a memorial to this disaster at Woodend Green.

Hi Gary

Since these photos of Brussels airport are not SMJ related, do you wish me to put them on this site or send them to you by mail; in which case could I have your E-mail; mine is jfreuville@gmail.com

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