Blenheim and Woodstock branch line

Blenheim and Woodstock Branch
Shipton-on-Cherwell Halt
Blenheim and Woodstock

The Blenheim and Woodstock branch line was a 4-mile (6.4 km) railway branch line that linked Kidlington and Woodstock, Oxfordshire. It ran from Kidlington railway station parallel with the Cherwell Valley Line north to Shipton-on-Cherwell, where it turned west through Shipton-on-Cherwell Halt towards Blenheim and Woodstock.


Built for the 8th Duke of Marlborough,[1] the line opened on 19 May 1890[2] and was privately owned until 1897 when it became part of the Great Western Railway, although the line was operated by Great Western Railway from its inception.[3] In 1929 Shipton-on-Cherwell Halt was opened, primarily to serve the Oxford and Shipton Cement Company limestone quarry and cement works. The last train ran on 27 February 1954 and track lifting was completed in January 1958.[3]

Train servicesEdit

The original service was four trains each way between Oxford and Blenheim and Woodstock. By around 1910, this had become ten trains a day and it remained at this level for many years. By 1938, the passenger service had been pruned back to nine trains a day, not all trains running through to Oxford.[3] The number of trains serving the station was cut in the late 1930s, and again in 1952 down to only six trains a day.[4] These cuts in the frequency of trains along the Woodstock branch line produced two-hour waits at Kidlington for a connection.


British Railways closed the branch line in March 1954 with the last train adorned with a wreath.[4] The track was lifted in 1958.


  1. ^ Crossley, Alan; Elrington, CR (eds.); Baggs, AP; Blair, WJ; Chance, Eleanor; Colvin, Christina; Cooper, Janet; Day, CJ; Selwyn, Nesta; Townley, Simon C (1990). "Woodstock: Introduction". A History of the County of Oxford. Victoria County History. 12: Wootton Hundred (South) including Woodstock. London: Oxford University Press for the Institute of Historical Research. pp. 326–333. ISBN 978-0-19722-774-9. Retrieved 2 February 2016.CS1 maint: extra text: authors list (link)
  2. ^ MacDermot, ET (1931). History of the Great Western Railway. II: 1863–1921. Paddington: Great Western Railway. pp. 366, 606. OCLC 55853736.
  3. ^ a b c Lingard, Richard (1973). The Woodstock Branch. Oxford: Oxford Publishing Co. ISBN 978-0-902888-23-4.
  4. ^ a b Searle, 1983, p. 129.[full citation needed]


  • Butt, R. V. J. (1995). The Directory of Railway Stations: details every public and private passenger station, halt, platform and stopping place, past and present (1st ed.). Sparkford: Patrick Stephens Ltd. ISBN 978-1-85260-508-7. OCLC 60251199.
  • Jowett, Alan (2000). Jowett's Nationalised Railway Atlas (1st ed.). Penryn, Cornwall: Atlantic Transport Publishers. ISBN 978-0-906899-99-1. OCLC 228266687.

External linksEdit