‘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"


SMJ Forum

Burton Dassett Cableway 1 Reply

Please find attached a copy of the OS 6" map 1888 - 1913 series that illustrates the subject cable-way (called a tramway on the map) and also the Burton Dassett sidings. This cable-way is mentioned by Arthur Jordan in hos book on the SMJ at pp45, he…Continue

Started by Dave Hayward. Last reply by Mark Reader on Monday.

Greetings from Bidford & a question re. Arrow river bridge at Broom 6 Replies

Hello everyone, I've just signed up. I'm a lifelong railway enthusiast originally from Dorset; my earliest memory is of being on the train from Wareham to Swanage. I see a few familiar names on here so some of you may know me from the Scalefour…Continue

Started by Simon Stevens. Last reply by Simon Stevens Jan 22.

Banbury Merton Road Shed and Britannia Works Tramway 8 Replies

By any chance does anybody have a reasonable photograph of Banbury Merton Road Loco Shed? If so I would like to include into some private research I am intending to share with a small informal group of enthusiasts, it would be greatly…Continue

Started by Dave Hayward. Last reply by Colin Franklin Dec 30, 2020.

Michael Mccarthy 2 Replies

I too have received this unusual email, I would think that it a scam. This is the second time I have received it and will always delete it.Continue

Started by Paul Loveday. Last reply by Nicholas Hemming Dec 30, 2020.

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Hello all, Been doing some research lately and came across a wedding certificate that lists my Grandfathers occupation as a "Platelayer" now im attempting to find out who for, any ideas if a list of employees of the SMJ is available ?  Also its possible it could have been the Buckinghamshire Railway. Would be gratful of any help.

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My Grandfather's occupation was listed as "Linesman" in 1926, and I have been trying to find out when he joined the SMJ / LMS railway, but with no luck yet.

Lee and Nigel,

I think there is a distinction between linesman and platelayer. I believe a linesman walked the line between two stations each day knocking in loose keys and reporting faults whereas a platelayer was more of a PW  man who might have been sent to where work had to be done that the linesman didn't tackle (in later days travelling on a platelayers trolley). I know that even as late as in early BR days there were two separate linesmen who walked the sections either side of Blakesley. My grandfather was a bricklayer during SMJ and LMS days. He often used to ride on a bicycle type trolley to where he was working, usually repairing brickwork on culverts. He spend quite a lot of time on one job near the GCR main line and his work party used to use the passage of the always punctual 'Sam Fay' express ( not the 'Sir Sam Fay' loco incidentally) as  a signal to knock off as they didn't often have a watch between them. 

I think you are referring to a lengthman Dick (hence talk of someone 'walking his length'). As I understand it, a lineman was someone who maintained the cables carrying telephone and signalling circuits - usually carried on telegraph poles in those days - repairing broken cables, fractured insulators etc I imagine. 

Yes you are right Paul, my mistake

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