- Birmingham to Worcester via Kidderminster Line
The Birmingham to Worcester via Kidderminster Line is a commuter
railway linefrom BirminghamSnow Hill to Worcester via Stourbridgeand Kidderminster.
It is one of the
Snow Hill Lines
It is not electrified, and services are operated by
Class 150and Class 168 diesel multiple units.
The line serves the following places:
*6 tph to from B'ham to Stourbridge;
*4 tph continue to Kidderminster
*2 tph continue to Worcester
Passenger services are provided by
London Midlandbetween Birmingham and Worcester and beyond, and by Chiltern Railwaysbetween Birmingham and Kidderminster only. The latter runs services to London Marylebonein the morning rush hour, which start from Kidderminster rather than Snow Hill, and reverse journeys during the evening.
A triangular junction at Worcester allows a variety of service patterns (see map). Some trains terminate at Shrub Hill, whereas some reverse there before going to Foregate Street. Other trains take the direct curve to Foregate Street avoiding Shrub Hill. Some trains continue beyond Foregate Street to Great Malvern.
Trains along this route occasionally also serviced Birmingham New Street, where they terminated. This link was axed, to much local consternation. Now passengers have to struggle with luggage across Birmingham City centre, or change at Galton Bridge.
Two other services are timetabled to use the line each day - one
CrossCountryservice to Birmingham New Street(via Smethwick Junctionand Galton Junction) in the morning and a reverse service in the evening. Neither of these call at any of the stations along the route. During congestion or mainly during engineering works, the line sees much more frequent service as a diversionary route. The line from Worcester Shrub Hill continues to Cheltenham Spa railway station, which is the next calling point for most Cross Country services, and thus offers a convenient alternative when the Lickey Inclineis closed.
Several charter trains can often be seen on the line due to the existence of the
Severn Valley Railwayat Kidderminster, which has a mainline connection.
Between Worcester and Kidderminster Viaduct, the line speed is 75 mph (top speed of the Class 150 units) except in the following places:
*Droitwich area - 65 mph
*Droitwich Junction - 40 mph
*Worcester Tunnel Junction - 25 mph
*Curve near Foregate Street station - 15 mph
*Rest of Worcester area - 40 mph
From the viaduct to Birmingham, line speed is generally 60 mph, except:
*Stourbridge North Junction - 15 mph
*Curve near Cradley Heath to Old Hill - 50 mph
*Old Hill to Rowley Regis - 40 mph
*Galton Junction - 30 mph
*The Hawthorns station - 50 mph
Line speed then gradually drops around the Jewellery Quarter area for approach to Snow Hill. In the tunnel between Snow Hill and Moor Street line speed is 20 mph.
* [http://www.stourbridgelineusergroup.info/stations.htm Stourbridge Line User Group - guide to stations]
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