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Wednesday, December 21st, 2011

Time Event
All aboard the Inter-suburb 1.25
Trip 2 based on that planned here http://celestialweasel.livejournal.com/434125.html

Didcot to Reading
Reading to Slough
Slough to Windsor and Eton Central
Walk to Windsor And Eton Riverside
Windsor and Eton Riverside to Clapham Junction
Clapham Junction to Shepherd's Bush (Overground)
Shepherd's Bush to North Acton (Central Line)
North Acton to Greenford (Central Line)
Greenford to Paddington
Paddington to Queen's Park (Bakerloo Line)
Queen's Park to Euston (Overground)
Walk to St. Pancras International
St. Pancras International to Stratford International (Not International, Not Finished) (Javelin)
Stratford International (Not International, Not Finished) to Stratford (DLR)
Stratford to Pudding Mill Lane (DLR)
Walk to Olympic stadium viewpoint and back
Pudding Mill Lane to Stratford (DLR)
Stratford to West Ham (DLR)
West Ham to Waterloo (Jubilee Line)

1. As you will see, my original plan was to go on the Thames Clipper but by the time I had got to Euston it was clear that I was going to run out of daylight. Also, I had done the Thames Clipper on a previous trip to London. The DLR really needs another trip in daylight.
2. As I have said before, I find the rites and rituals of what used to be Southern Region (the Windsor to Clapham Junction bit is now South West Trains, as commemorated in the Pet Shop Boys song 'South West Trains' (some times you're better off dead etc.)) rather alien, so there is something quite psychogeographical about the transition from Slough to a branch line, then a walk past Windsor Castle, which is quite weird looking, then you find yourself at a station with completely different architecture. The journey is slightly disturbing too as the electric trains accelerate faster but never really get that fast. Southern Region is another country, they do things differently there.
3. It occurred to me in passing as I got to Greenford that it is where I was officially born, what my passport says anyway. What was then the Middlesex General Hospital. When I got there I just got straight onto the diesel train waiting so didn't get out to have a look round, this was just as well as the next 3 trains on the line were cancelled.
4. The Greenford to Paddington line, or specifically the part from Greenford to West Ealing really crawwwwwwwwwls for quite a lot of the route.
5. Curiously South Greenford station is subtitled West Perivale in smaller letters on the signs. This is the sort of decision that you (or I anyway) always wonder 'who made the decision? who bothered? why?'
6. The Queen's Park to Euston part is not one of the more exciting parts of the Overground, being mainly in cut and cover tunnel.
7. I think 'they' are missing a trick by not making Stratford and Stratford International (Not International, Not Finished) heavily Shakespeare themed, and making Abbey Road (DLR) heavily Beatles themed. Pudding Mill Lane should of course be themed as the site of Shakespeare and the Beatles's collaboration on the now sadly lost rock opera 'Love's Labours Won'. Sadly only one example of their collaborations survives http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vDqqFWvwJJw (or http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zLEMncv140s )
8. The Olympic stadium viewpoint is Very Much As You Would Expect (TM). Obviously you can't get anywhere near the stadium. There is more work going on than I would have naively expected at this point, not knowing anything about planning this sort of thing. Lots of road-works, landscaping etc. But, of course, they are also doing Crossrail work near Pudding Mill Lane station.
Never let it be said the British can't do big infrastructure projects
On a related note, I see that we (probably) have the capability to link bits of Watford with other bits of Watford. http://www.croxleyraillink.com/ In my mind, Watford Met and Watford Junction are further apart than they appear to be in reality. This suggests another trip to me, walking between the two. Obviously I will go back to travel the magnificent new engineering project when it opens. I see also that some sort of compromise has been reached on the bats in Wolvercote tunnel, perhaps. I imagine though that with the alleged funding for the East - West link Western part, the bats may find themselves blindfolded, turned round three times and left to fend for themselves.

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