The Shakespeare Express makes two round trips each day calling at the following stations:
- Birmingham Snow Hill
- Birmingham Moor Street
- Stratford-upon-Avon (The town station)
Southbound Journeys A & C use the Shakespeare Line, passing through Henley-in-Arden.
For details of the Shakespeare Line, see below or visit the website of the Shakespeare Line Promotion Group
Northbound Journeys B & D use the Bearley-Hatton branch, connecting to the former GWR main line from London, now used by Chiltern Trains and Cross Country express trains. This exciting mainline sprint results in some spirited running up to 75mph depending on the loco.
See the surprised looks of the drivers on the M40 as they are overtaken by a steam train running alongside the motorway!
However in certain circumstances northbound trains may also use the Shakespeare Line.
To view the detailed route guide for The Shakespeare Express, please click:
A selection of photographs taken along the Shakespeare Line from Birmingham to Stratford-upon-Avon.
The origins of the Shakespeare Line Promotion Group can be traced back to the 1960s when the North Warwickshire Line Defense Committee was formed to fight the British Rail plan to close the railway between Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon. This was defeated, as was a scheme in the 1980s to single the line south of Shirley and remove the track entirely between Henley-in-Arden and Bearley Junction. The name was changed to the current title following rebranding of the line by the council-led steering group in 2002.
The SLPG exists to:
- Encourage the use of the train services between Birmingham and Stratford and also those from Stratford towards Leamington Spa.
- Promote the line’s benefits to residents and visitors.
- Monitor operational standards of trains and stations.
- Liaise closely with train operating companies, government, local authorities and regulatory bodies.
- Promote further development of the Shakespeare Line as a major transport asset for the Birmingham, Solihull and Warwickshire areas.
- Gain improved facilities and stations.
- Achieve better integration of rail and bus services.
- Promote the proposed extension from Stratford to Honeybourne via Long Marston.
We are currently focusing on gaining extra stops on services between Solihull and Stratford, an earlier service into Birmingham on Sundays to meet demand created by shopping and a later late-evening service from Birmingham to Stratford to provide a post-cinema/theatre connection.
The Group has been actively supporting the campaign to reopen the closed six-mile link south of Stratford to Honeybourne, which would reconnect the route with the Cotswold Line, permitting a through service to Worcester, Oxford and points west and south via Stratford. The possibility of reinstatement has been the subject of positive comment in the Inspector’s Report on the recently-adopted Core Strategy for Stratford-upon-Avon, which will govern development in the district for years to come.
We are always ready to welcome new members. Please visit our website at www.shakespeare line.com, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or contact:
166 Windy Arbour