‘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"
Following the sad loss of John Jennings, a stalwart of the SMJ and our society, Mike Musson set up a page on his site. The whole sit is well worth a visit as it overlaps with us here at the SMJ society Go take a look…Continue
Many of you will be aware that in common with all other railway companies the SMJR lost many of its employees for all or part of the Great War as the patriotic duty to volunteer was overwhelming. Railwaymen were technically exempt but many chose to…Continue
Thanks for your interesting message. I didn't know that Harold Drinkwater was a signalman at Blakesley. During the 20s my grandfather must have worked with him as he was a PW man and brickie based at Blakesley station. I can't really remember him and your relative Harold must have died before I was born. I'm afraid I can't really help you much with further info about your relatives as I was very young at the time and didn't know them very well. They used to live two doors away from my grandparents, and a dear old couple named Tew lived in between. That's about all I can remember. The name Fairey is familiar as there used to be a toy shop of that name at Towcester and also there was a locally well-known railway photographer named Ken Fairey (any relation?)
I see from a comment you sent Peter Lewis that you have family connections with a signalman at Blakesley. I was wondering roughly when your father in laws' grandad was signalman there. I have done quite a bit of research into the railway at Blakesley including an interview for the website with Bob Salmons who was a signalman there in the 40s and 50s. If you haven't seen it it's on this website (you need to click on the 'History Pages' link at the top of the page. There's also an album of Blakesley photos in the 'Photos + Videos' section which you have probably already seen. I remember a family called Drinkwater who lived in School Lane in the 50s, there was an old lady named Bertha and she had two grown up daughters still at home called Grace and Joy. Perhaps Bertha was the signalman's mother or his widow. Both the daughters married, Grace married a man named Del. A different family of Drinkwatres kept one of the village shops.