Some Early Lines
Old Railway Companies
Ashby & Nuneaton Joint Railway
The Ashby & Nuneaton Joint Railway was the only joint MR/L&NWR project. Market Bosworth station, now used as a garage, was, at this time, also the southern limit of the Battlefield Line, which aimed to extend along the track-bed beyond the station towards Shenton and Bosworth battlefield.
The London & North Western Railway proposed a line from Ashby to Nuneaton via Market Bosworth in conjunction with the Nuneaton – Wigston line opened in 1864, but the Midland Railway had already obtained powers for an identical line in 1846, which had lapsed at the time of the purchase of the Leicester & Swannington Railway. Now, however, it revived the plans the result being a joint project, authorised on 1 September 1873, was worked by both partners, becoming part on the London, Midland & Scottish Railway in 1923. Three miles of track-bed between Shackerstone and Market Bosworth are now part of the preserved ‘Battlefield Line’.
Midland Railway train behind 0-4-4 tank No. 2081 at Market Bosworth in around 1905
The Battlefield Line is the last remaining part of the former Ashby and Nuneaton Joint Railway which was opened in 1873. It runs from Shackerstone via Market Bosworth to Shenton in Leicestershire and is operated by the Shackerstone Railway Society.
Shackerstone Station is at the northern end of the line, and is the headquarters of the railway with museum, Victorian tea room souvenir shop, loco shed and main rolling stock located here. There is ample free parking, and the Ashby Canal is just a stones throw away.
Our remarkable railway captures the very essence of a country line, with steam, diesel and railcar train services along with small stations meandering along a single track line. It really does convey something of the feeling and atmosphere of heady days past.
For anyone who retains a sense of nostalgia for times gone by, you’ll be pleasantly surprised at this place – one of Leicestershire’s best kept secrets, not just a train ride but a journey into history as well.