‘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 Oct 15.

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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A WD 2-8-0 from Newport shed on what appears to be a loaded freight somewhere on the SMJ.
The bridge should be a clue to someone - there is a small stunted telegraph pole right under the arch which must be significant? The line curves to the left behind the train. It MIGHT be Aston le Walls,taken from the west but I am not convinced, and the telegraph pole is not apparent in pics taken from the other side of the bridge

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Comment by Barry Taylor on March 29, 2013 at 12:18

I'm tempted to plump for Aston le Walls for this one, although not totaly convinced yet. There are not too many photos about of this location from this era, although I do have one of another WD coming under the other side of the bridge. On that one I can't make out the stunted telegraph pole that looks to be under the bridge on the mystery shot, and I think that it should be visible. Also on the mystery shot I cannot see the small loading platform that was just beyond the bridge on the right and that ought to be more visible too. Apart from that Aston fits - the bridge looks right, the curve of the line is OK - and even the two SMJ bridge restriction signs are in the right places (but then they always were on other bridges too) Any other thoughts?

Comment by Dick Bodily on March 27, 2013 at 11:30

It was allocated to Ebbw Junction from Dec 54 to June 57 so that narrows the date down a bit. The headcode is for Class H Through Freight and it looks like a steel train with the loco returning from Woodford to Wales. Around those years the first evening steel train left Woodford yard at about 7.30pm and I don't think that there were any afternoon ones so presumably this picture was taken quite late in the evening on a sunny summers day.

Comment by Barry Taylor on March 27, 2013 at 9:54

Some further thoughts on this one. I think that the train is probably one of the afternoon / evening freights heading to South Wales, which would account for the sun being on the front of the loco - so possibly heading west rather than east. Also on closer examination, the sleepers are concrete. Does anyone know where these sleepers were laid on the SMJ, presumably as part of the 1950's upgrading of the line west of Woodford. I have pics of them variously at Byfield station, Burton Dassett and Aston le Walls - but not at Ettington, Kineton, or Fenny Compton - or were they installed as a rolling programme on most of the line eventually? 

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