‘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

2F WDs working to Bristol

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 on Friday.

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.

Salvaged track bolts 2 Replies

Does any know if the bridges were numbered? Similar to how the canals number thier's. Because a few weeks ago I was magnet fishing under the if I bridge behind the bellebaulk housing estate in Towcester and pulled out a number of chair bolts and I…Continue

Started by John Godwin. Last reply by Russ Firth Oct 3.

SMJ photos

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After I'd posted myt comment on 'Slow, Moulding and Jolting', I saw the other entries and realised that local people had got other names for the line. Whilst is seems clear that they do not have a poetic ear, I bow to local knowledge and humbly accept that locally it was known as the Slow Miserable and Jolty. In the University City of Oxford it was named as I put it. I always thought it was a wonderfully mysterious railway and very romantic. The LMS ran express goods over it from St. Panctas to Bristol!. All these old contractor's ines, built as cheaply as possible but yet foll;owing very useful cross-country courses, were failures commercially but wonderfully evocative and generally magic. The King's Sutton Junction to Andoversford Jc line through Stow-on-the-Wold, the Midland & South Western Junction from Andoversford Jc to Andover (and Southampton) marvellous railways. My friend SId Mumford, born about 1920, was very keen on the SMJ and was very attracted to Cockley Brake Jc. for its remoteness which is magicalness. He was a Special Class signalman at Oxford. Great railways, great people, great days.

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Adrian
Don't worry! We like a nice SMJ debate here! You drop as many bomb-shells as you like, you're just helping to keep the memory of the SMJ alive!
Andy
Andy Thompson said:
Adrian
Don't worry! We like a nice SMJ debate here! You drop as many bomb-shells as you like, you're just helping to keep the memory of the SMJ alive!
Andy
Adrian

According to Peter's researches it was known as your version by an old lady from Stratford as well.

All the best

Dick
Dick said:
Adrian

According to Peter's researches it was known as your version by an old lady from Stratford as well.

All the best

Dick
adrian vaughan said:
Dick said:
Adrian

According to Peter's researches it was known as your version by an old lady from Stratford as well.

All the best

Dick
That's what we want to hear Adrian. You must have a million railway stories - if you can dig out some SMJ ones (or dig out some from others by starting a debate) then carry on!!

Andy
Speaking of the magicalness of the SMJ, my source wrote that ..."it was a slow line"!! In fact, she said, it was so slow that whilst the train was in motion , you could get out, pick moon- daisies at the side of the track, and get back on again!!
Peter S Lewis said:
Speaking of the magicalness of the SMJ, my source wrote that ..."it was a slow line"!! In fact, she said, it was so slow that whilst the train was in motion , you could get out, pick moon- daisies at the side of the track, and get back on again!!
adrian vaughan said:
Peter S Lewis said:
Speaking of the magicalness of the SMJ, my source wrote that ..."it was a slow line"!! In fact, she said, it was so slow that whilst the train was in motion , you could get out, pick moon- daisies at the side of the track, and get back on again!!
In Stratford it was often also known as The Slow, Mournful Journey. (Usually by staff employed by its larger neighbour the GWR but I won't mention the Gas Works!). In the fifties and sixties I also heard it called the "Smudge".
In and around West Northants, Towcester and Blakesley, some 60 yrs ago the SMJ was often referred to as the Save Me Jesus - perhaps a bit non pc by todays standards!
I like that one a lot - best ever.

A.

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