‘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

Footage of the SMJR

Hello, I found your forum searching for the SMJR. I've just uploaded a digitised version of old cine film footage of the line to my Youtube channel. I will be selling the original Hillside cine film soon along with a few others I've collected…Continue

Started by G Essex Random Railways Jun 20.

Binton station plans 2 Replies

Hi!I recently discovered this article on Binton station building in the now long defunct magazine ‘Model Railways’ from 1976. It includes a full plan which might encourage someone to model this simple station.Does anyone have access to, or know of a…Continue

Started by Martin Bromage. Last reply by Martin Bromage May 8.

Black & White photos of the SMJ 1 Reply

HelloMy name is Mick Baker and i have recently joined your society.A friend of mine Nigel Hadlow, has taken several thousand black & white photosof railways around the country.With a little help from me with my limited computer skills, i have…Continue

Started by Mick Baker. Last reply by Peter S Lewis Mar 29.

Station Masters

Stationmasters_Revised_January_2022.xlsxChris Hillyard on the Facebook Group "Railways Of Northamptonshire and…Continue

Started by Graham Ward Feb 7.

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Burton Dassett/Edgehill Light Railway


 

 

 

The East & West Junction railway (E&W) proposed a new line from a junction with the Northampton & Banbury Junction Railway at Greens Norton to Stratford Upon Avon.
In 1864 Lady Palmerson came and cut the first sod.
The E&W became a part of the SMJ in January 1st, 1909.

 

Blakesley

Morton Pinkney

Woodford Halse

Byfield

Fenny Compton

BurtonDassett/Edgehill Light

Kineton

Ettington

Stratford Upon Avon

Binton

Bidford

Broom


The Edge Hill Light Railway was built to develop the large ironstone reserves which lay on the Northants / Oxfordshire border. The huge demands of Word War 1 at the time were really making any source of iron ore worth harvesting.  The thrust behind the idea of the line seems to have been the proprietors of the Stratford on Avon and Midland Junction Railway (SMJ) who saw it as a means of increasing traffic on their railway. The Edge Hill Light Railway was built with standard gauge track  throughout, starts from a junction with the SMJ at Burton Dassett sidings approximately half-way between Fenny Compton and Kineton stations on the SMJ and adjacent to the main road between Banbury and Warwick. The shelter on the platform served as an office for the goods depot foreman. The light railway branch led out of a siding on the south side of the SMJ line and quickly curved away to the south-west. Harry Willmott, the SMJ Chairman, later became chairman and Arthur E Diggings of the SMJ was its secretary and subsequent traffic manager of the new line. The promoters acquired mineral rights to over 600 acres around Edge Hill. The chairman of the company in 1922 was Mr Harry Willmott, chairman of the SMJR and the chief officers of the Edge Hill Light Railway were also those of the SMJ.


This 3.5 mile long ironstone line was engineered by Stephens in 1919 with a 1 in 6 cable-worked inclined section in the middle. The line's working life started in 1922 but it never officially opened and intermittent activity ceased in 1925 as the ironstone deposit was uneconomic. Quarries on Edge Hill were worked until January 27, 1925, when the last load was brought down the EHLR to Burton Dassett. Since that date the line has been disused. The line was severed in WW2 for an army ordinance depot  and stock and the remaining line rotted away until torn up for scrap in 1946


The railway and its rolling stock was left to rot for another 22 years before it was dismantled. For more on the Edgehill Light Railway click here  For more images  click here  and here



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