‘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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Byfield Quarries

 

 


 



The Industrial Railway Society was founded in 1949 as the Birmingham Locomotive Club - Industrial Locomotive Information Section. The Society is the leading organization in the United Kingdom devoted to the study of all aspects, and all gauges, of privately owned industrial railways and locomotives, both at home and overseas. Collieries, opencast coal pits, steel works, gas works, peat bogs, Ministry of Defence depots, engineering works, docks, electric power stations, etc., are all covered by the Society. Also details of various railway preservation groups and their locomotives, etc.Thanks for their help with this section.

(Northamptonshire Ironstone Co Ltd until 1928)

The Quarries were situated to the north of the village of Byield. The quarries had a standard guage railway system which ran south to a connection with the Stratford Upon Avon & Midland Junction Railway/LMS about half a mile west of Byfield station. Production started in 1915 but ran only until 1925, to be started once more in 1928, running up until final closure on the 12 th of February, 1965. Upon closure all the equipment was dismantled and the workings systematically erased from the landscape, so much so as it is hard to find any evidence as I type (December 2008)



  • 4ft 8.5’ James 0-4-0st OC P 996 1904 (a) Scr c/1941
  • Northfield 0-6-0st OC P 717 1898 (b) (1)
  • Jeannie Waddell 0-6-0st IC P 464 1888
  • - - reb AE 1898 (c) Scr c/1923
  • 0-6-0 IC MW 1235 1890 (d) Scr c3/1962

Byfield
  • Lance.B.Pain 0-6-0st IC HC 347 1892 (e) Scr 2/1965
  • Byfield No2 0-6-0st OC WB 2655 1942 New
  • (2) Cherwell 0-6-0st OC WB 2654 1942 (f)
  • (5) Sir Berkley 0-6-0st IC MW 1210 1890 reb MW 1909 (g)
  • (3) No3 Avonside 0-6-0st OC AE 1919 1924 (h)
  • (4)

Legend:


  • MW=Manning Wardle,
  • Leeds HC='Hudswell Clarke
  • WB = W.G.Bagnall Ltd., Stafford.
  • AE = Avonside Engine Co. Ltd., Bristol
  • P = Preckett & Sons Ltd., Bristol.
  • (a) Ex James Pain Ltd, Glendon East Quarries. C 1915
  • (b) Ex John Griffiths & sons, Glenburn Colliery, Lancs
  • (c) Ex Great Mountian Collieries Co Ltd. Carms. c/1917
  • (d) Ex P, 1929; earlier Westleigh Stone & Lime Co, Burlescombe, Devon.
  • (e) Ex Furness Shipbuilding Co. County Durham c/1923
  • (f) Ex Park Gate Iron & Steel Co Ltd. Charwelton Quarries. C/1945
  • (g) Ex Cranford Ironstone Co Ltd Cranford Quarries 1959
  • (1) Ex Staveley Iron & Chemical Co Ltd, Derbys. 1960
  • (2) To Bloxham Quarries, Oxford 1918
  • (3) To Oxfordshire Ironstone Co Ltd, Banbury Oxon 1946
  • (4) To Keighley & Worth Valley Railway Yorkshire 1965
  • (5)To Staveley Minerals Ltd. Cranford. 1965
  • (6) To Daventry Borough Council, New Street recreation Ground. 1966




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

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Comment by Simon Dunkley on July 22, 2018 at 13:18

Embedded link to photo:

Comment by Simon Dunkley on July 22, 2018 at 13:16

‘Sir Berkeley’ is, of course, preserved by the Vintage Carriage Trust, and currently (2017) operating on the wonderful Middleton Railway.

This line and the quarry closed when I was 2 days old, and came home from “The Barratt”. I am told it was snowing, so we also know about the weather that day!

Simon (“born in the Barratt”) Dunkley

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