‘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

2F WDs working to Bristol 5 Replies

In the 1950s/60s we had a regular working of a 2F Woodford Halse WD to Bristol. I was always intrigued by how they got there. Does anybody know if that was via the SMJR please?Continue

Started by Bob Bishop. Last reply by CLIVE BOARDMAN on Friday.

DVD on the SMJ 2 Replies

HiI’m looking for a copy of the film “The Stratford Upon Avon & Midland Junction Railway” edited by Hillside Publishing some time ago.This company is now out of business and cannot be called upon to get a copy.If possible, I would wish to…Continue

Started by Jack Freuville. Last reply by David Mead Nov 24.

Talk to Welford Local History Society

I live in Welford on Avon which now incorporates the former Binton Station with its recent housing development.The local history society is currently planning its 2022/23 programme of events and talks and would be keen to include a talk on the…Continue

Started by John Read Oct 8.

Broom Junction station site for sale 2 Replies

Great opportunity for an SMJ enthusiast perhaps.  I'm not sure what you could actually do with this site though!…Continue

Started by Simon Stevens. Last reply by Simon Stevens Oct 4.

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I recently acquired a bundle of railway related papers, amongst which is a1955-6 BTC application to Parliament for various powers to construct works etc. Most are related to docks and waterways, but buried in the middle are a couple of references to the SMJ line.

One is obvious - the new curve at Stratford - although it is interesting to note that the process started as early as 1955-6, and also that the Honeybourne line is still referred to as the "Oxford, Worcester & Wolverhampton Railway" !

The other is a little more obscure.

It refers to a "widening on the north east side of the bridge in the parish of Fenny Compton in the rural district of Southam carrying the railway between Broom and Byfield over the road leading from Fenny Compton to Byfield"

It's obvious which bridge this is, but does anyone know the nature of the work and why it was carried out?

Possibly it is something to do with the WR loop line, although the north east side of the bridge seems the wrong side for this.

Interestingly, there is no mention of the other works at Fenny to provide the through junction onto the SMJ which opened in 1960, along with the Stratford curve.

Possibly this did not need approval as it was wholly on railway owned land, and only involved track realignment.

Any thoughts?

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The bridge widening was because the crossing loop was to be considerably extended (towards Kineton) and a third track - Up Reception Loop - added.

The new running junction - for the iron ore trains from Banbury OIC to south Wales - merely replaced the previous back-shunt siding connection between the two railways, within their existing limits of deviation thus needing no parliamentary powers.

You can see this from Tony Cooke's "Track Layout Diagrams of the GWR", Section 29, which covers the whole SMJ (third edition, 1994) - out of print but you might pick it up through second hand dealers (try Googling it...).


Many thanks for this - I should have realised the answer myself, but for some reason in my haste I overlooked the fact that there were in essence two bridges, and not one, under the line !!

I was therefore concentrating on the description "north east side" and expecting the widening to be over on the GW line.

A quick look at various photos showed the changes in the bridge over the SMJ line - quite obvious really.

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