Transport in and around Solihull
Solihull CAMRA is very keen for you to enjoy visiting the good pubs in this area, but it should go without saying that drinking and driving is a really bad idea. Fortunately there are plenty of alternative ways of getting around.
When planning your travel, it's useful to have a feel for the layout of the area. Solihull, slightly confusingly, is two things: a borough, and within it a town of the same name. Shirley, a smaller town (although once the bigger of the two) lies within the borough and slightly to the west.
Both Solihull and Shirley have been settlements since long before the days of the internal combustion engine, and many of the area's pubs lie along one of two old coaching routes. These run from Birmingham south-east towards Oxford and London, one passing through Solihull, the other through Shirley. The canals and later the trains also broadly followed these coaching roads. Many of the directions on our pubs page refer to these historic routes.
For those coming from further afield, Birmingham might be a good landmark to start from. It lies on several rail lines and the Black Country metro, not to mention 10 percent of the country's canals. Both rail routes to Solihull begin at Birmingham Moor Street. Long-distance trains arrive at Birmingham New Street, from which it is an easy, signposted 5-10 minute walk to Moor Street. Some trains from Worcester and the Black Country metro arrive at Birmingham Snow Hill, which has direct trains to Moor Street and onward to Solihull. Digbeth Coach Station is also a few minutes walk from Moor Street (and there are a couple of good pubs close by if waiting for a bus or train home).
Trains to Solihull (the town), follow the Chiltern Line (Leamington Spa, Warwick, Banbury to London). Local trains also stop at Olton, Dorridge (for Knowle), Widney Manor, Lapworth & Hatton. This roughly corresponds with the A41 Warwick Road (and bus routes) and the Grand Union Canal (towards London).
Shirley trains from Moor Street often continue through Earlswood and the Warwickshire countryside to Stratford upon Avon, following much the same route as the Stratford upon Avon Canal, and the A34 Stratford Road, with numerous bus routes (eg 6 and X20 ) also passing through Shirley.