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Updated 25 July 2018, 11:19

About The Shakespeare Line & Supporters

Class 150 unit at Yardley Wood

Class 150 unit formerly used on the line at Yardley Wood : Brian Wilson

On This Page

We give :

An introduction to the Shakespeare Line

The history of the former Shakespeare Line Steering Group

The Shakespeare Line Promotion Group

The Hatton-Bearley Branch

Why not join the Shakespeare Line Promotion Group? With a larger group representing the railway line's users then we will have greater influence in achieving quality improvements to the line.

Support the Avon Rail Link southern extension to the line, which will serve new communities and provide a southern through connection to the National Rail network.

The Shakespeare Line

Welcome to the ShakespeareLine.com website, which aims to promote travel along The Shakespeare Line - the railway line between the City of Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon.

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.

The Shakespeare Line offers residents and visitors quick, convenient and economical travel for business, leisure and educational purposes.

Shoppers, in particular, find the trains a quick and easy way to get to the Birmingham and Stratford markets and for other shopping outings. The route is relatively unusual as it is used by regular modern diesel services and seasonal heritage steam train operations.

Over 2 million passengers per annum use the stations between Stratford and Small Heath, with many of those people using Birmingham Moor Street and Snow Hill stations travelling to and from other Shakespeare Line stations.

In addition, many thousands of adults and children each Summer enjoy the unique experience of mainline steam train travel on the famous Shakespeare Express.

This website is designed to provide an initial focus of information on the benefits of using the route, together with an insight into the wide range of features and attractions available along the line.

It is effectively an introduction and a gateway to other websites where more comprehensive information can be obtained on a selection of topics.

It is not, itself, an advertising website. However, it does provide a selection of easy links that you may wish to follow up. So just click for times, fares, operations, venues, attractions, visitor and area information etc.

We are sure you will find ShakespeareLine.com informative and practical.

If you are a visitor, you can find out what to do, where to go and how to get there.

If you are a resident, you will find details of convenient local travel options and perhaps even learn something new about your area.

So please browse this website, use the links and please do let your friends know what The Shakespeare Line has to offer.

Shakespeare Line
Steering Group

The origins of the Group go back to the 1990s when a number of interested parties considered the needs for maintaining and developing the potential of the then North Warwickshire Line', between Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon.

Commissioned research confirmed untapped passenger opportunities, including domestic and international tourism, among the target markets. Notwithstanding the international visitor centres at each end of the line, there is a lot in between.

The resident populations along the Stratford to Birmingham corridor, are from a mix of urban suburbs, market towns and rural locations – all requiring reliable and attractive travel facilities for commuting, business, educational and leisure purposes. The Line is unique in that the route is used by both scheduled rail services and mainline heritage steam trains

The combination of these factors resulted in a diverse range of member organisations, each contributing their particular expertise and working together to develop the line. This in terms of the quality of product (trains, stations, associated facilities) and encouraging high levels of passenger service awareness, support and usage.

The designation was changed subsequently to The Shakespeare Line to reflect and identify with the historic and cultural past of the area. The Group appointed a Development Officer, to work with stakeholders and others and achieve both short and longer term line development objectives.

Steering Group Members were :-

  • Birmingham Alliance
  • Birmingham City Council
  • Birmingham Railway Museum Trust, Vintage Trains, Tyseley Locomotive Works
  • Central Trains
  • Centro
  • Chiltern Railways
  • Marketing Birmingham
  • Network Rail
  • Shakespeare Line Promotion Group
  • Stratford-upon-Avon District Council
  • Warwickshire County Council

For many people, the Shakespeare Line offers convenience and rapid direct links over other forms of transport. therefore it has become first choice for local residents and visitors alike.

In addition, the Group had strong working relationships both collectively an individually, with a wide range of public and private sector organisations on regional and national bases. Areas of involvement include Transportation Strategy and Policy, Regional Economic Development, Tourism and Heritage Maintenance.

Shakespeare Line Promotion Group

The Shakespeare Line Promotion Group (SLPG) has its origins in the group that was formed to fight the proposals to close sections of the North Warwickshire Line in the 1960s. Due to that group's efforts the line was saved and now is a thriving rail route and has attracted substantial infrastructure investment.

The SLPG continues to play a significant role in initiating, encouraging and supporting positive change, for existing and potential rail users, along the diverse corridor between Stratford-upon-Avon and Birmingham.

THE SLPG promotes services on the Hatton-Bearley branch, because it provides a route to/from Stratford. In particular, SLPG is trying to get more services for the stations at Claverdon and Bearley.

The Group aims to :

  • encourage the use of Birmingham and Stratford-upon-Avon railway
  • 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 the Birmingham, Solihull and Warwickshire areas
  • promote the proposed extension from Stratford to Long Marston - Avon Rail Link >>

To find out more about the Group, please contact :

The Secretary


166 Windy Arbour




Shakespeare Line Promotion Group Enquiry >>

The Shakespeare Line Promotion Group is a member of Railfuture.

SLPG Membership Leaflet

Please click on the link below to download a membership application form, which should be printed out and sent to

The Membership Secretary


202 School Road

Hall Green


B28 8PD

Membership leaflet

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