‘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

Would the GCR have gone via Towcester? 14 Replies

Looking through Mac Hawkins book on the GCR then and now, he mentions that the GCR were thinking of running a line connecting Brackley to Northampton and had provisionally made a mound ready for a platform to be later constructed but they dropped…Continue

Started by Gary. Last reply by Andrew Emmerson on Sunday.

EWJR Portland Cement Wagon 13 Replies

Hello All,I found this item on ebay, although it's a model, what I'd like to know is, was it actually based on the real thing? As you can see it has the initials EWJR and return empty to Ettington, which all fits in with the real world.It was listed…Continue

Started by Jim Goodman. Last reply by Jim Goodman on Sunday.


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 Andrew Emmerson on Saturday.

Byfield station woodwork colour 1 Reply

Hi, as anyone any idea what colour the doors would have been on the station building. I have a vague recollection that they were a maroonish/brownish colour, similar to the signal box.Thanks in advanceCliveContinue

Started by Clive. Last reply by Andrew Emmerson on Saturday.

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Comment by Dick Bodily on June 19, 2011 at 13:35

Hello Barry again

Have spoken to Rex who tells me he saw the down working passing through Byfield station on its way with empties to the ironstone exchange sidings, whereas my picture is of the return laded train en route for Blisworth. This would seem to suggest that it was most likely a round trip from the Blisworth end for the Super D. Rex remembers the Nuneaton working you mentioned through Banbury and adds that its ultimate destination was Oxford with coal for the town's gasworks.

Best wishes


Comment by Dick Bodily on June 9, 2011 at 16:17

Hello Barry,

Good to hear from you,

That's quite possible as I only saw it travelling towards Blisworth (as illustrated) on the daily Byfield ironstone.  If this was a substitution at Byfield for a failed loco it might also explain the unconfirmed report of a Stanier Mogul on the SMJR as Nuneaton had several of these. Mind you it would have made more sense to substitute a  loco off Woodford shed rather than Banbury. Stanier Moguls regularly came through Northampton on freights as well, so its equally likely that it was on a round trip to Byfield. I know Rex Partridge saw it at Byfield on the same day, but I don't know if he saw it come in from the Blisworth directiion, so next time I speak to him I shall ask.


Comment by Barry Dunwoody on June 8, 2011 at 23:23
These locos were always known as "Duck-8's" in Banbury. In the late 1950's Nuneaton locos - these, Black-5's and Crabs - all worked freights into Banbury. Could it have got to Byfield via Woodford on the GC link?
Comment by Dick Bodily on June 6, 2011 at 9:59
I had always assumed that the engine seen on a Byfield to Blisworth iron ore working on 29th Dec 1960 was a Bletchley engine commandered at Blisworth for a return trip, possibly having arrived on a chalk tipper train from Totternhoe Quarry on the Leighton - Dunstable line. The plot thickens as I've recently discovered that the engine 49415 was allocated to Nuneaton 2B at the time.

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