‘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

Newport Pagnell OO gauge - MK Museum

I've added this photo album for Jon , David and anyone else to see. As its not SMJR related I will delete it after a few weeks. here is a linkNewport Pagnell OO gauge - MK…Continue

Started by Dick Bodily yesterday.

Does this show the Scratter at Roade? 3 Replies

A very short clip of a cricket match at Roade. A goods train passes. Could it be on the SMJR?https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fnPSvt-NEeIContinue

Started by Ron Johnson. Last reply by Dick Bodily on Wednesday.

DVD on the SMJ 3 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 Jack Freuville Dec 18, 2021.

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 Dec 3, 2021.

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I am trying to put together a list of all the locomotive types that have ever been recorded on the SMJR routes. (ie. Cockley Brake Junction - Blisworth SMJR, Towcester - Broom Junction, Towcester - Ravenstone Junction). I've used this website, all the standard reference books, plus 'Last Years of the GCR Main line' and my own observations. So far I've got a list of 70!

I need help with the following:-
. diesel classes used on trains to Kineton depot since closure of the SMJR
. can anyone identify what class ex- LYR No 12103 was? because it worked the SMJ!
. can anyone confirm the following classes on the SMJ: Modified Hall, Jinty, Sulzer Type 2 diesel?
. ANYTHING YOU THINK MIGHT NOT BE ON MY LIST!

Among exotics on the list so far are 'Jumbo' 2-4-0s, SR U Mogul, Robinson O4 2-8-0, K3 2-6-0 and Patriot!

Looking forward to hearing from you

Dick

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Nothing new per sey but looking through a book of mine "London Midland Steam Doubleheaded" (ISBN 085153 2489) there are 6 shots of SMJ double headed trains all credited to T E Williams. Is this the Tom Williams alluded to in this thread?
For those who haven't got the book the locos are:
1) 4F's 44423 + an unidentified example leaving Stratford smokebox to smokebox on vans dated 30 June 1957. Both coupling rods appear to be in the exact same position on both locos.
2) 4F's 44015 + 44175 again in Stratford area and again smokebox to smokebox but on open wagons this time. Dated 8 May 1960
3) 4F's 43971 + 44219 passing Clifford sidings dated 8 May 1960 & both running facing the correct direction with a goods of mostly open 16T mineral wagons but also with a couple of bogie bolsterrs in the consist.
4) 4F's 44317 + 44364 leaving Stratford 25 February 1957 again both facing the right way & on open wagons.
5) and 6) WD 90563 leading Ivatt 43106 into Stratford using SMJ metals all the way en-route to Woodford from South Wales. Dated 8 May 1960.

This latter photo brings the the tally to 3 preserved locos known to have worked SMJ metals then. The KWVR 4F, a GWR 2-8-0 that was for sale recently and now the SVR's 43106...
Gary

99% sure you're right, but John Jennings will know for certain if it's the same man.
The WD and 4MT combination is interesting, as I've only heard of 4MTs on the Round the World previous to this, so this is new. Incidentally the now preserved 4MT was a Woodford engine at the time as was the Aussie. It was more likely to be seen on pickup goods or local passenger services on the GCR line, but would have rapidly been running out of that kind of work when photographed.

Dick

Gary said:
Nothing new per sey but looking through a book of mine "London Midland Steam Doubleheaded" (ISBN 085153 2489) there are 6 shots of SMJ double headed trains all credited to T E Williams. Is this the Tom Williams alluded to in this thread?
For those who haven't got the book the locos are:
1) 4F's 44423 + an unidentified example leaving Stratford smokebox to smokebox on vans dated 30 June 1957. Both coupling rods appear to be in the exact same position on both locos.
2) 4F's 44015 + 44175 again in Stratford area and again smokebox to smokebox but on open wagons this time. Dated 8 May 1960
3) 4F's 43971 + 44219 passing Clifford sidings dated 8 May 1960 & both running facing the correct direction with a goods of mostly open 16T mineral wagons but also with a couple of bogie bolsterrs in the consist.
4) 4F's 44317 + 44364 leaving Stratford 25 February 1957 again both facing the right way & on open wagons.
5) and 6) WD 90563 leading Ivatt 43106 into Stratford using SMJ metals all the way en-route to Woodford from South Wales. Dated 8 May 1960.

This latter photo brings the the tally to 3 preserved locos known to have worked SMJ metals then. The KWVR 4F, a GWR 2-8-0 that was for sale recently and now the SVR's 43106...
The caption on the 4th image mentions that the 4F's used on the line came from all over and states: "They came from a wide-ranging number of shed, from Bristol and Gloucester, to Bedford, Northampton and Leicester, etc." mentioning that the two in the photo were Bedford & Bletchley locos repectfully.

The train in photo 5 & 6 consists of 3 brake vans and 28 loaded wagons.

(For those interested consist - for modelling perhaps? - from what I can tell is WD, 4MT, Brake Van (in bauxite), Brake Van (light grey), 20T mineral, 16T min, bulging (!) metal bodied wagon type unknown, 16T, 16T, another of the un-id type, 16T, wooden-bodied open (same height as the 16T min), lower height lwb wooden bodied, 5x16T, another wooden bodies one as per first, 16T, 5x wooden?, the rest appear to be 16T but maybe at least one more wooden on in there then the brake van (bauxite).)
Gary

That was the case with 4Fs until the Towcester - Olney section closed, after which through freights from the Gloucester area to Turvey, Bedford or the Midland main line to St Pancras ended and just about all pickup goods trains were (2E) 4Fs, but with still a great variety of all types of WR shedded engines, including Welsh sheds, as well as 2F engines, on through freights from the Great Central route. For a while Tyseley 4Fs occasionally appeared on pick up goods but you'd have been very lucky to have seen any engine other than a Northampton loco on a typical day at Towcester by the '60s.

Dick

Gary said:
The caption on the 4th image mentions that the 4F's used on the line came from all over and states: "They came from a wide-ranging number of shed, from Bristol and Gloucester, to Bedford, Northampton and Leicester, etc." mentioning that the two in the photo were Bedford & Bletchley locos repectfully.

The train in photo 5 & 6 consists of 3 brake vans and 28 loaded wagons.

(For those interested consist - for modelling perhaps? - from what I can tell is WD, 4MT, Brake Van (in bauxite), Brake Van (light grey), 20T mineral, 16T min, bulging (!) metal bodied wagon type unknown, 16T, 16T, another of the un-id type, 16T, wooden-bodied open (same height as the 16T min), lower height lwb wooden bodied, 5x16T, another wooden bodies one as per first, 16T, 5x wooden?, the rest appear to be 16T but maybe at least one more wooden on in there then the brake van (bauxite).)
T E (Tom) Williams was a Stratfordian and an accomplished railway photographer. He knew and corrsponded with many of the well known names of the era, R C Riley, Maurice Early, Dick Blenkinsop and others.He was the wine and spirits manager for local brewers Flower & Son and a detailed potted biography is addended at the end of one of my railway files not currently on this site but as it deals with what went on at Stratford GW in the period in question some of you might like a copy if you e-mail me direct I will send it on. It was Tom that taught me most about railway photography and I still have a roll film camera that I bought off him in 1959! Tom was first and formost a GWR man and one of the breed that only reluctanly would press the shutter if the sun was not shinning. This is now a frustration as I know some of the gems he didn't take because he thought they would be around in the sun some day soon. Although hardly a week went by without him pressing the shutter somewhere on the ex GW lines in the area he only took shots on the SMJ as an afterthought or fortunately when there was a special or during the 1959 engineering works. I have a copy of every one of his SMJ line images and they number 107 in total. Tom's black and white negatives are now at York as sadly he passed away at an early age. He did take colour slides using a Leica and Kodachrome and they were superb. Doubtless there will be a handful of SMJ line shots but unfortunately I do not know where his colour slides are now located. The 4F on the last train was a 21A loco as the tour originated in Birmingham
CORRECTION. 4188 was a BESCOT loco. please see the photo I have posted of the last tour. JJ
Hi Dick,

L&Y 12103 was a class 27 loco
some details here:http://www.railuk.info/steam/getsteam.php?number=52103&grp=&...
Hope that helps....
A brilliant bit of work.

Do we have an idea on how many locos that used the SMJR actually survive?
I know of 3.
Gary

Thanks for extra info about L & YR loco.

What are your 3? The 4F, the 8F and the 4MT?

Dick

Gary said:
Hi Dick,

L&Y 12103 was a class 27 loco
some details here:http://www.railuk.info/steam/getsteam.php?number=52103&grp=&...
Hope that helps....
A brilliant bit of work.

Do we have an idea on how many locos that used the SMJR actually survive?
I know of 3.
Almost Dick,

I have:
4MT 43106 on SVR
4F 43924 on KWVR and
28xx 2874 on WSR - unrestored.

The latter is stated as having run over SMJR metals in "Heritage Railway" magazine Issue 120 pp22.

Which is the 8F?

G

P.S. If you have some logs with numbers on you could send I don't mind trawling through the preserved steam books to see how many tie up.
Gary

48305 a Northampton engine and regular on SMJ mineral trains around 1959-60ish. Now at GCR Loughborough

Also appeared on SMJ
B12 61572 at NNR
Midland Compound 1000 at York
'Evening Star'

and who knows what else? For instance 'Hardwicke' was I believe allocated at Northampton or Bedford at one time and other Jumbos certainly made it onto the SMJ lines. There must be another GWR engine somewhere that made it onto the SMJ

Dick

Gary said:
Almost Dick,

I have:
4MT 43106 on SVR
4F 43924 on KWVR and
28xx 2874 on WSR - unrestored.

The latter is stated as having run over SMJR metals in "Heritage Railway" magazine Issue 120 pp22.

Which is the 8F?

G

P.S. If you have some logs with numbers on you could send I don't mind trawling through the preserved steam books to see how many tie up.
Excluding all of the GW locos that used the triangle at Stratford to turn you can add 4-4-0 9015 (24.5.55) and 2-6-2 6111 (date to confirm) to the list (both on railtours) that photos survive of. I agree that 2874 was seen on mineral workings on at least three occasions. I am pretty sure that 92212 can be counted but please wait until I have checked it unless someone else already has!

John J
John,
6111's tour details are here :http://thesmjr.ning.com/page/rail-tours.
I think I have seen a picture of 92212 in one of the SMJR books - sadly the one I think it is in is 180 miles away at my parent's house...
ATVB
G

John Jennings said:
Excluding all of the GW locos that used the triangle at Stratford to turn you can add 4-4-0 9015 (24.5.55) and 2-6-2 6111 (date to confirm) to the list (both on railtours) that photos survive of. I agree that 2874 was seen on mineral workings on at least three occasions. I am pretty sure that 92212 can be counted but please wait until I have checked it unless someone else already has!

John J

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