Shrewsbury to Chester Line

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Shrewsbury-Chester Line
Principal stations (from south to north)

for Welsh Marches Line
for Heart of Wales Line
for Cambrian Line
for Wolverhampton to Shrewsbury Line
Wrexham General
for Borderlands Line
for West Coast Main Line
for Wirral Line
for North Wales Coast Line
for Mid-Cheshire Line

The Shrewsbury to Chester Line, also known as the Severn - Dee Line (after the rivers on which Shrewsbury and Chester stand), was built in 1846 as the Shrewsbury and Chester Railway. The engineer for the line was a Mr Robertson while the contractor was Thomas Brassey in partnership with William Mackenzie and Robert Stephenson[1].

It became part of the Great Western Railway's main line from London Paddington to Birkenhead Woodside until nationaliation when it was part of the Western Region until later transferred to the London Midland Region of British Railways. It runs from Shrewsbury in England to Chester, also in England. Of the intermediate stations, Gobowen is in England but the remainder are in Wales.

The towns served by the lines are listed below.

Passenger trains along the line are operated by Arriva Trains Wales. At Chester, there are connections to Crewe, Northwich, Warrington, Manchester, Liverpool and along the North Wales Coast Line to Holyhead. At Shrewsbury, connections are provided with lines to Welshpool, Aberystwyth, Pwllheli, Swansea, Hereford and the Welsh Marches Line, Cardiff, Wolverhampton, Birmingham, Crewe and Manchester.

Growth in services

Arriva Trains Wales in December 2005 introduced a new timetable to the line, providing an hourly service between Shrewsbury and Chester, Monday to Saturday, from early morning until around midnight (involving eight additional trains serving Gobowen). This improved service includes a through train every two hours between Holyhead and Cardiff throughout most of the day. The line has seen passenger numbers double during 2003/2004 and increase by 300 percent since 1999.

In 2006 the Wrexham Shropshire and Marylebone Railway Company (WSMR) was formed, with the aim of providing direct services to and from London.


  1. Helps, Arthur The Life and Works of Mr Brassey, 1872 republished Nonsuch, 2006. p. 107 ISBN 1845880110

Railway lines in Central England:
Main lines:  Cross-Country Route   Midland Main Line   West Coast Main Line
 Birmingham-Peterborough via Leicester Line   Birmingham-Worcester via Bromsgrove Line  
 Birmingham-Worcester via Kidderminster Line   Cherwell Valley Line   Chiltern Main Line  
 London-Aylesbury Line   Trent Valley Line   Welsh Marches Line   Wolverhampton-Shrewsbury Line
Commuter lines:  Birmingham-Rugeley "Chase" Line   Birmingham-Stratford Line   Birmingham-Walsall Line  
 Coventry-Nuneaton Line   Cross-City Line   Leicester-Loughborough "Ivanhoe" Line  
 Northampton Loop Line   Robin Hood Line   Rugby-Birmingham-Stafford Line  
 Stourbridge Junction-Stourbridge Town Line   Walsall-Wolverhampton Line 
Rural lines:  Cotswold Line   Crewe-Derby Line   Derwent Valley Line   Leamington-Stratford Line  
 Marston Vale Line   Nottingham-Lincoln Line   Nottingham to Grantham Line  
 Oxford-Bicester Line   Princes Risborough-Aylesbury Line   Shrewsbury-Chester Line

Railway lines in Wales:
Main lines:  Gloucester-Newport Line   North Wales Coast Line   Shrewsbury-Chester Line   South Wales Main Line   Welsh Marches Line 
Valley lines:           Butetown Branch            City Line            Coryton Line            Ebbw Valley Line            Maesteg Line 
          Merthyr Line            Rhondda Line            Rhymney Line            Vale of Glamorgan Line 
Rural lines:  Borderlands Line   Cambrian Line   Conwy Valley Line   Heart of Wales Line   West Wales Line