Birmingham Snow Hill-Wolverhampton Low Level Line


Birmingham Snow Hill-Wolverhampton Low Level Line

Note omission of Jewellery Quarter.
This station was built brand new in 1995.
It is roughly in the area of Hockley.

The Birmingham Snow Hill to Wolverhampton Low Level Line was part of the Great Western Railway's London Paddington to Holyhead route. As the name suggests, it ran between Birmingham Snow Hill and Wolverhampton Low Level in England. The line was dual-gauged.

The line opened in 1854, two months later than planned, following a bridge collapse near Winson Green, which caused chief engineer Isambard Kingdom Brunel to order strengthening on several other bridges.

Dudley Branch

This particular stretch of line had many intermediate stations and included a branch to Dudley railway station. Travelling towards Wolverhampton, the branch diverged north of Swan Village railway station, and joined the South Staffordshire Line east of Dudley Port railway station. Trains called at Great Bridge South railway station, Dudley Port railway station and Dudley railway station on the branch.

Closure

The line closed in 1972 upon the closure of Snow Hill. All other stations along the route closed with it, but Wolverhampton Low Level remained open until 1981 as a parcels depot. In 1995, the 'Jewellery Line' saw the relaying of tracks as far as a short distance past The Hawthorns before the line branched off, crossing the Rugby-Birmingham-Stafford Line at the also-new Smethwick Galton Bridge and joining the main Birmingham to Worcester via Kidderminster Line, which previously routed into Birmingham New Street.

The rest of the original GWR line was redeveloped in 1999 as part of the Midland Metro tram scheme. Although the lines leave the original trackbed before Wolverhampton Low Level, most other places that were served before the closure of Snow Hill are once again served by the Metro. The Metro runs parallel to the Jewellery Line from an area north of The Hawthorns.

References

* [http://www.railaroundbirmingham.co.uk/Stations/swan_village.php Rail Around Birmingham and the West Midlands: Swan Village Station]
* [http://www.railaroundbirmingham.co.uk/Stations/west_bromwich.php Rail Around Birmingham and the West Midlands: West Bromwich Station]
* [http://www.railaroundbirmingham.co.uk/Stations/hawthorns.php Rail Around Birmingham and the West Midlands: The Hawthorns Station]


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