Daily Archives: July 30, 2013

Some Early Lines Princes Risborough to Aylesbury Line

Some Early Lines

Princes Risborough to Aylesbury Line

Aylesbury 1910 spellerweb.netAylesbury, around 1910 with a GCR local train. Originally part of the GWR’s Wycombe Railway from Maidenhead to Princes Risborough, with branches to Oxford and Aylesbury, the High Wycombe to Aylesbury section became part of the Great Western & Great Central Joint Railway in 1906  (spellerweb.net

The Princes Risborough to Aylesbury Line is a rural branch line from Princes Risborough to Aylesbury in Buckinghamshire, England. The line is single track throughout with a maximum speed of 40 mph.


The line was built as a single track broad gauge branch of the Wycombe Railway in 1863. The branch became part of the Great Western Railway when the latter took over the Wycombe Railway in 1867. The GWR converted the line to standard gauge in 1870. The branch was incorporated into the newly formed Great Western and Great Central Joint Railway in 1906. Network SouthEast made the branch part of its Chiltern subdivision in the 1980s.

1The Wycombe railway opened its 7½ mile branch from Princes Risborough to Aylesbury on 24 October 1864. On 27 May 1962 0-4-2T No. 1455 (84C) runs off the branch and enters Princes Risborough with the 2.25pm service from Aylesbury. (L.Sandler


Passenger services are now operated by Chiltern Railways. The line is regularly used by freight services operated by Freightliner and DB Schenker. The trains, referred to as ‘binliners’, carry waste from London to a waste facility near the site of the former Great Central Railway station at Calvert. For this purpose, during Chiltern Railways’ Evergreen 2 project the line was resignalled with two new signals at Little Kimble, one for each direction of travel. These allow two trains to travel in the same direction, thus allowing a passenger service to follow the freight train or vice versa.2Against the backdrop of the Chiltern Hills 0-4-2T No. 1455 (84C) approaches Princes Risborough on 10th June 1962 with the 2,22pm service from Aylesbury Town. (L.Sandler

3There were three intermediate stations on the branch: Monks Risborough & Whiteleaf Halt (opened 11 November 1929), Little Kimble (opened 24 October 1864) and South Aylesbury Halt (opened 13 February 1933). On 3 June 1962 0-4-2T No. 1455 (84C) and autocoach ‘Thrush’ stand at Little Kimble with the 10.35am service from Aylesbury. South Aylesbury Halt was close to passengers on 5 June 1967. (L.Sandler

4During the big freeze in 1963 the branch required the assistance of the Wycombe snow plough seen here on 21 January 1963 as driver Johnny Bloxham poses for the photographer alongside ‘5700’ 0-6-0PT No. 3622 and ‘2251’ class 0-6-0 No. 2289