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Updated 12 June 2018, 09:46

The Shakespeare Line - the right track for business, studies and leisure

Sporting its new West Midlands Railway livery, class 172 339 heads for Stratford-upon-Avon as it passes Edstone Aqueduct with a service from Stourbridge junction on 14 December 2017. Image © Fraser Pithie 2017. Click on image to see enlarged image

The Shakespeare Line

Welcome to this website, which is provided by the voluntary Shakespeare Line Promotion Group >>

We aim to promote travel along The Shakespeare Line - the railway line between the City of Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon.

We provide here an introduction to the railway line together with an insight into the wide range of features and attractions available along the line.

Stations along this line serve the City’s shopping and business districts, urban suburbs, market towns, rural communities and Stratford-upon-Avon’s international visitor centre and facilities. More >>

A range of website links are provided to give more detailed information. So just follow the links for train times, fares, operations, venues, attractions, visitor and area information etc.

The Shakespeare Line Promotion Group is a member of Railfuture.

The Group aims to :

  • encourage the use of the railway between Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon
  • promote the line's benefits to residents and visitors
  • monitor operational standards of trains and stations
  • liaise closely with train operating companies, Government, Councils, and Regulatory Authorities
  • promote further development of the Shakespeare Line as a major transport asset for Birmingham, Solihull and Warwickshire
  • promote the proposed extension from Stratford to Long Marston - Avon Rail Link >>

All information on this site is provided in good faith, but no liability whatsoever can be accepted for its accuracy. Neither can any liability be accepted for the content of other websites to which links are provided.

Latest news

2018 AGM

Our 2018 AGM will be held at Holy Trinity Parish Church Hall in Stratford-upon-Avon on Wednesday 23 May, starting at 7.15 pm prompt. The hall is located in Old Town. Some parking is available.

The event will commence with a presentation entitled “Stratford then and now” by Andrew Dow, to which all are welcome. This will be followed by a presentation of the results of our recent surveys of rail users. The business of the AGM will commence at 8.30 pm.

Refreshments will be available.


Cheaper rail tickets with Trainsplit

It has long been possible to save money on rail fares by splitting ticket purchases, i.e. by purchasing two or more tickets for a journey rather than one through ticket. However, this has hitherto involved a lot of work comparing fares. A new website - Trainsplit - has now been launched which makes the whole process much easier. It works in a similar way to Opodo, which offers cheaper flights by accepting changes and combining fares for the individual parts of a route, instead of just looking for direct services and through tickets.

Some examples of the savings which can be achieved are shown below.

Journey

Cheapest return fare on Trainline

Cheapest return fare on Trainsplit

Saving

Journey details

Stratford-upon-Avon to Stoke-on-Trent, returning same day

£35

£24.52

£10.48

Dep. 10.24, arr. 12.43

Return dep. 17.07, arr. 19.23

Change in Birmingham

Henley-in-Arden to Glasgow, returning one week later

£133.90

£95.67

£38.23

Dep. 09.41, arr. 15.15

Return dep. 12.00, arr 17.07

Change in Birmingham

Birmingham to Taunton, returning one week later

£79.40

£63.32

£16.08

Dep. 10.17, arr. 12.14

Return dep. 09.51, arr. 11.58

No changes

Both single and return fares are available: the examples above are based on the cheapest return fares. It will be seen that the cheaper fares do not involve any more changes of train than the more expensive options, although this is not always the case. It is possible to customise the search for fares by including or excluding changing points, routes or train operating companies and including a Railcard discount. N.B. The site does not cover Eurostar services.

The use of split tickets is perfectly legal.

Bus services

All buses serving Stratford stop at the Natwest Bank/Oxfam shop on Wood Street, a few minutes' walk from the station in the direction of the town centre. Please check times and routes before travelling, as they can change at short notice. Click here to see current bus timetables for Warwickshire or use the National journey planner - train, bus and coach.

Buses now serving Stratford station

August 2017: The following bus services currently serve Stratford-upon-Avon (town) station:

City Sightseeing services and services nos. 19 (to West Green Drive), X19 (in the direction of Alcester, Studley and Redditch) and 229 (to Wilmcote, Bearley and Snitterfield) use stop A.

Buses from the Park & Ride and the 19, X19 and 229 services in the direction of the town centre depart from stop B.

Service 5 (Town circular via the Maybird Centre) departs from stop G.

Services 6 (to (to Banbury via Wellesbourne, Kineton and Tysoe), 7 (to Banbury via Ettington, Kineton and Tysoe) and X7 (to Banbury via Ettington) depart from stop D.

The X20 service to Birmingham departs from stop C. It departs from stop H when running into the town centre.

Stops A and B are on Alcester Road, up the steps from the station forecourt. All other stops are in the station forecourt.

Stratford-upon-Avon Area Transport Strategy

The question of reinstatement was discussed at a meeting of Stratford-upon-Avon District Council on 24 April, within the scope of the Stratford Area Transport Strategy (SATS). A video recording of the meeting can be viewed here. The relevant discussion commences at 13 min 53 seconds and Councillor Roger Vaudry expresses firm support for reinstatement at 1 hour 39 minutes.

A vote was taken on the SATS, but without the projected Eastern Relief Road. It was passed with 28 councillors voting in favour, four against and one abstention.


Kenilworth station reopens

Kenilworth station, closed in 1965, reopened on 30 April 2018. It is served by a Leamington-Coventry train running at hourly intervals from Monday to Saturday.. The first train leaves for Coventry at 06.16 with the last service at 22.25. In the opposite direction, services start at 06.44 with the last train at 22.53. There are currently no Sunday services. This information is provided in good faith, but with no liability on the part of the Shakespeare Line Promotion Group. Please check times before travelling.


More News >>


The Stations & Route

Birmingham Snow Hill (BSH)
Birmingham Moor Street (BMO)
Bordesley (BBS)
Small Heath (SMA)
Tyseley (TYS)
Spring Road (SRI)
Hall Green (HLG) 105 parking spaces, including 8 disabled
Yardley Wood (YRD) 100 parking spaces, including 4 disabled
Shirley (SRL) 79 parking spaces, including 5 disabled
Whitlocks End (WTE) 300+ parking spaces
Wythall (WYT)
Earlswood (EWD) 12 parking spaces
The Lakes (TLK)
Wood End (WDE) 6 parking spaces (extension under discussion)
Danzey (DZY) 10 parking spaces including 3 disabled
Henley-in-Arden (HNL) 62 parking spaces including 12 disabled
Wootton Wawen (WWW)
Wilmcote (WMC)
Stratford-upon-Avon Parkway (STY) 295 parking spaces
Stratford-upon-Avon (SAV) 320 parking spaces, including 7 disabled

The numbers of parking spaces are provided in good faith, but the Shakespeare Line Promotion Group cannot accept any liability whatsoever for their accuracy. The number of spaces may vary due to construction/improvement work. Charges are made for parking at some stations.

National Rail Enquiries

National journey planner - train, bus and coach >>

Train Times & Fares >>

Live Departure & Arrival Boards >>

Station Services & Facilities >>

Book a taxi from your destination station >>

Changes to Train Times & Service Disruptions >>

Save money by splitting tickets - Trainsplit


Train Operators

For train information, please visit the train operators' websites:

Birmingham - Stratford & other West Midland services
West Midlands Trains >>

Stratford & Birmingham to Warwick, Leamington & London
Chiltern Railways>>

Birmingham - Henley - Stratford Heritage Steam Train Service - Summer Sundays only
The Shakespeare Express - Vintage Trains >>

Click here to see a list of excursions scheduled to visit Stratford in 2018.

For details of steam-hauled and other excursions throughout the UK, please visit our News and Notices page.



© Shakespeare Line Promotion Group 2005 - 2018 - all rights reserved.