Most summers along the Shakespeare line, Vintage Trains used to run steam trains between Birmingham Snow Hill and Stratford-upon-Avon. They now also have a licence to run trains on the mainline from the Tyseley Locomotive Works to Birmingham Moor Street during the Christmas season. It is quite the sight to see a steam train going over the Bordesley Viaduct! Look out for it in Digbeth.

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The Shakespeare Express and The Polar Express





Most summers along the Shakespeare line, Vintage Trains used to run steam trains between Birmingham Snow Hill and Stratford-upon-Avon. They now also have a licence to run trains on the mainline from the Tyseley Locomotive Works to Birmingham Moor Street during the Christmas season. It is quite the sight to see a steam train going over the Bordesley Viaduct! Look out for it in Digbeth.


In September 2015, the Shakespeare Express was at Birmingham Snow Hill Station at platform 1. When I got to platform 3, saw the steam locomotive 5043 Earl of Mount Edgcumbe decouple and head towards the Jewellery Quarter tunnels, before it returned and recoupled at the other end. Didn't have the best views from platform 3 to be honest!

The steam locomotive is seen puffing away towards the tunnels that leads to Jewellery Quarter Station.

The carriages at platform 1. They filled the length of the platform.

I didn't have the best view from platform 3. One of the carriages as passengers walk past!

Earlier that day I saw The Shakespeare Express passing through Hall Green Station. The front of the engine was attached to the carriages. So the back end was heading towards Stratford-upon-Avon. They would probably have to decouple it again at Stratford-upon-Avon, so the engine would be facing the front towards Birmingham Snow Hill!

The name plate of the special service is seen at the front.

Most of the stations on the Shakespeare line opened in 1908 and are of the Edwardian period.

 

The Polar Express run by Vintage Trains started in the last week of November 2018 and will run throughout the Christmas season until late December 2018. Should be every Thursday to Sunday.

Steam puffing away into platform 4 at Birmingham Moor Street Station.

There was photographers on both platforms. And probably on all the days that it is due in at Moor Street Station. As well as from the Moor Street Car Park view. The Poppy Appeal train from Chiltern Railways was at platform 3.

Rood Ashton Hall or as it is known during this Christmas season as the Polar Star slowly comes into the platform.

There is a view from the ramps down from the Bullring to Moor Street Queensway.

Into the concourse then down the steps to Moor Street. Before that a few views as the Polar Star comes to a stop.

Seen with Chiltern Railways 68012 at platform 3. Platform 5 is the only platform yet to be restored at the station.

I have also seen the Polar Express from a train I was on the next day passing through Bordesley Station. Was a bit awkward getting photos from the train as it passed. Later saw some views of the Polar Express returning to Tyseley over the Bordesley Viaduct through Digbeth. Quite a sight to see!

At the back was as diesel locomotive D1755 47 773.

I also noticed from my train that they have done up the Tyseley Locomotive Works around the Tyseley Warwick Road platform area for Christmas.

The Polar Express seen from the Bordesley Viaduct in Digbeth. The train was stationary on the viaduct, probably waiting for it's slot to go into Birmingham Moor Street Station. These views of 4965 Rood Ashton Hall / Polar Star from Oxford Street in Digbeth.

Was a bit difficult to see it from this side, heading from Bordesley Street. So walked under the viaduct for a look on the other side of Oxford Street.

On this side of Oxford Street, Rood Ashton Hall seen with a pub that the Peaky Blinder Pub was due to take over (used to be an Irish pub called O'Rourkes).

Had to walk further down Oxford Street and close to the Digbeth High Street.

These views of the back of the train. D1755 / 47 773 seen from Milk Street in Digbeth.

When you are up there, you don't realise how far down from the viaduct it is! The area is close to the Custard Factory, and various pieces of graffiti / street art.

Photos by Elliott Brown