‘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

Funny Story about Kineton Military Railway 1 Reply

An improbable, funny, but absolutely true story relating to the Kineton military railway.Long after my Army days I still retained an affection and passing interest in Kineton ammunition depot where I served during the 1960s. Coupled to a 'love' of…Continue

Started by Dave Hayward. Last reply by Dave Hayward Apr 28.

Blisworth - Towcester ETS working

Electric train staff equipment had been brought into use between Blisworth and Towcester by 9 August 1910 (date of SMJR minute 451 (TNA file RAIL 674/3)) and presumably the new signal box at Blisworth appeared at the same time. In that this was so…Continue

Started by Richard Maund Apr 20.

Blisworth 1920

SMJ board minute 1474 of 13 April 1921 (TNA file RAIL 674/4) approved that “the following expenditure be charged to Capital” for year 1920: “Blisworth: Signalling and alterations to Permanent Way, Improvements and additional signalling: £800”. In…Continue

Started by Richard Maund Apr 20.

Evesham Redditch & Stratford-upon-Avon Junction Railway 8 Replies

Did this railway (as opposed to the East & West Junction Railway) go into receivership - if so, when. And when did it come out of receivership?Continue

Started by Richard Maund. Last reply by Richard Maund Feb 11.

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Blisworth

 

 

 

Blisworth
Towcester
Wappenham
Helmdon
Banbury



In 1833 Robert Stephenson was appointed chief engineer of the the first railway into London, the London & Birmingham line. One of the most difficult sections was to be at Blisworth. Stephenson had to cut his way through1.5 miles of rock. Underneath the top layer of stone was a layer of clay, under which was found large amounts of water. Steam engines were used to pump out the water While this was going on, 800 men were busy digging and blasting and by the time the cutting was finished, over 3,000 barrels of gunpowder had been used. It was calculated that over a million cubic yards of material was dug out at Blisworth Cutting.


The London and Birmingham Railway, under Robert Stephenson, bypassed Northamptonshire’s capital town, Northampton due to the limitations of the technology of the day over the counties inclines.

The company first opened a station at Blisworth in 1839. In 1842, a new "first class" station was planned. 'First Class' meant, ‘all trains would stop there’, Ford Lane, Blisworth became Station Road and the location of Blisworth station. Blisworth became a junction station when in 1845 a branch line on to Peterborough was completed via Northampton, and in 1866 a single-track, 4 mile branch line was built to Towcester with grand ideas to run onto South Wales. Starting as the Northampton and Banbury Junction Railway, this short branch was to become the SMJ.


Blisworth station closed in January 1960 and today both branches lines have also long since gone. The ‘Walnut Tree Inn’, formerly the Blisworth Hotel, the station hotel remains and over-sees what once was Blisworth station.

The main railway line is now part of the West Coast Main Line, having been electrified in the 60s.


An 8F at Blisworth 1964



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Find more photos like this on "The Unofficial SMJ Society" at www.smj.me

Find more photos like this on "The Unofficial SMJ Society" at www.smj.me

 

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