Chiltern Railways is a Train Operating Company running stopping trains between London Marylebone and Birmingham, through the Chiltern Hills. The route is reasonably scenic for the south-east of England, which is just as well, as the commuter-style trains are considerably slower than Virgin Trains' express services to Birmingham New Street from Euston. The company's bold Mission Statement is 'To be the best passenger railway in the UK'. As long as the Island Line exists, this is unlikely to be fulfilled. The company is owned by construction business the John Laing Group, which also has interests in the Docklands Light Railway, Midland Metro, and Brisbane's Airtrain in Queensland.

Chiltern Railways operate 34 sets of class 165 diesel multiple units, and 13 new class 168 'Clubman' sets. the class 165 sets are presently being refurbished. The track section from Princes Risborough to Bicester North was made double track in 1998, thus bringing provision up to the standard of most other commuter lines. Chiltern trains operate through the zones of validity of both London Underground's Travelcard and the West Midlands-based Centrocard, which allow unlimited travel within the appropriate areas. Services from Birmingham Snow Hill to Kidderminster and South Ruislip to London Paddington are restricted. On the following map, north-west is at the top.


   Kidderminster
         |
Stourbridge Junction
         |
   Cradley Heath
         |
    Rowley Regis
         |
     Smethwick
   Galton Bridge
         |
    The Hawthorns
         |
  Jewellery Quarter
         |
 Birmingham Snow Hill
         |
Birmingham Moor Street
         |
    Small Heath
         |
      Tyseley
         |
    Acocks Green
         |
       Olton
         |
      Solihull
         |
    Widney Manor
         |
      Dorridge
         |
      Lapworth
         |
       Hatton
         |
  Warwick Parkway
         |
      Warwick
         |
   Leamington Spa
         |
      Banbury
         |
   Kings Sutton
         |
  Bicester North
         |
Haddenham and Thame Parkway
         |
         | /-Monks Risborough--Little Kimble-\
         |/                                   \
         |                                     \
Princes Risborough                         Aylesbury
         |                                     /
     Saunderton                               /
         |                                   /
   High Wycombe                      Stoke Mandeville
         |                                 /
    Beaconsfield                          /
         |                           Wendover
Seer Green and Jordans                  /
         |                             /
   Gerrards Cross            Great Missenden
         |                           /
 Denham Golf Club                   /
         |                     Amersham
       Denham                     /
         |                       /
   West Ruislip       Chalfont and Latimer
         |                     /
  South Ruislip               /
        /|              Chorleywood
       / |                  /
      / Northolt Park      /
     /   |             Rickmansworth
    /   Sudbury Hill     /
    |   Harrow          /
    |    |            Harrow-on-the-Hill
    |   Sudbury and   /
    |   Harrow Road  /
    |    |          /
    |   Wembley    /
    |   Stadium   /
    |    |       /
    |    \      /
    |     \    /
    |      \  /
    |       \|
London      London
Paddington  Marylebone

The line is concurrent with the London Underground Metropolitan Line from before Harrow-on-the-Hill to Amersham. Connections at Chalfont and Latimer for Chesham on the Metropolitan, the most far-flung of all Underground stations; at West and South Ruislip to the Central Line; at Marylebone and Paddington for the Bakerloo Line; and at Paddington for the Circle, District and Hammersmith and City Line.

National Rail connections to the Heathrow Express and First Great Western at Paddington; to Virgin Trains at Paddington, Banbury, Leamington Spa and Solihull; to Thames Trains at Paddington, Kings Sutton, Banbury, Leamington Spa, Warwick and Hatton; to Central Trains at all stations from Leamington Spa to Kidderminster except Warwick Parkway; to Midland Metro at Birmingham Snow Hill, Jewellery Quarter and The Hawthorns; and to the preserved Severn Valley Railway at Kidderminster.

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