17th December, London Tour

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Galvanize

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17th December, London trip

The trip officially began for me at 08:50, when I left my house and started to wind my way down to Lewisham station, reached it at 09:05. I wasted no time in buying my Travelcard from the DLR ticket machines (as usual), then headed over to Platform 3, to wait for the 09:20 to London Victoria. 465244 was on the 09:16 to Cannon Street, while 465165 was on my train to Victoria, boarded in the second carriage. Passing Peckham Rye, we started racing Southern’s 456011, then at Stewarts Lane I saw 09009 plus various mark 1 coaches.

Arrival at Victoria, I saw a steam train (Sherwood Forester) on Platform 2 with FM Rail’s “Slim Jim” 33202 Meteor at the rear. But then I descended into the underground station, to hear that the District and Circle line was screwed up again 
I boarded a Westbound district line train to Earls Court, then there was trouble because no Edgeware road services turned up, so I was forced to take the Piccadilly line to Hyde Park Corner. The trouble didn’t end there, I took the wrong exit (I was meant to take Exit 2 to Park Lane) and ended up in the middle of Hyde Park Corner roundabout, Result? PVL407 stormed past on the 36, so then I walked over to Park Lane where a 436 arrived, how convenient 

At Paddington, I waited on the concourse for everybody to arrive, Heart of wessex was first at 10:25, then FGWFan at 10:30, finally Sprinter at 10:50. As soon as we all met, we headed for Platform 13 to get the 10:58 to Greenford, sitting in declassified first class, things like strange dreams involving strange trains in strange places, ATW’s new timetable, different locomotive numbers were mentioned. After arrival at Greenford, it was seminar time, then onto the Central line, we mentioned route atlases etc to pass the time before arrival at Notting Hill gate where we changed to the District line. A very packed C stock arrived at the platform, which we took to Earls court, where we doubled back to High Street Kensington on a refurbished District line D stock. Back to Olympia, there was a 25 minute wait for the train, so to pass the time I bought a cup of hot chocolate and a mince pie. The 12:43 to Brighton came 8 minutes early, me and Sprinter secured a table for the 4 of us, then at Clapham Junction we spent a while getting numbers etc. At 13:30ish it was on a electrostar into Victoria, while Heart of Wessex went upstairs to get his KFC meal, me FGWfan and Sprinter went over to Subway to get our lunch.

We found James on the concourse, then we walked towards the Underground station to catch the Victoria Line to Green Park, the 20 mile walk to the Jubilee line Platforms (thank god we didn’t walk to the piccadilly line from the Jubilee!), to catch a train to Canning Town. To get the right exit, you have to sit (or stand) in the 3rd coach, second door IIRC. We got the correct one nevertheless, and headed upstairs for the DLR platforms to hear the announcer say “The Next train at Platform 3 is for King George the fifth VIA London City Airport. BZZZZZZ!” the train arrived and we took the rear seats of the train (it’s more interesting seeing the DLR backwards at times!)
We soon came back to Canning Town, back on the Jubilee line to London Bridge.

At London Bridge, we spent approx 45 minutes, because Heart of Wessex wanted to see his “Box machines” but we saw a few interesting stuff Including a Midget 375 on the Tunbridge Wells service, a very frequent thameslink service!! We saw many a Networker including 465244, which I saw earlier in the day, 376s, 375s etc, then halfway through standing at London Bridge, I bought a drink from Upper crust. At around 16:15, we all headed for the bus stop to catch a route 40 to Fenchurch Street, where we got on a 357 forming the 16:50 to Pitsea via Chav-ford hundred and Tilbury. I alighted at West Ham, got a Jubilee line train to Canary Wharf, walked 5 miles to Heron Quays to catch a lewisham train and finally a 484 (LDP190) to Hilly Fields and home.
 
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Techniquest

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Indeed, sums up the day there for the rest of us to West Ham. I shall continue the trip report from here.

Sprinter, heart-of-wessex and I went onto Barking, where we saw 150127 on the Gospel Oak service from a different platform than usual. As this was doing the Barking flyover line, I ran for this with the others. The first diesel of the day since Greenford! We take this straight through to Gospel Oak, changing and ending up running for a 313 to West Hampstead. Here, we buy food from a kebab shop and went on a Kentish Town loop Thameslink train at 1806 to Kings Cross Thameslink. Here, many traffic misses later, we end up at St. Pancras to check the number of a 9-car 222 that went through at West Hampstead. It turns out to be 222002, which I needed, the others having already seen it. We decide to go, as the only HST to depart soon had just left when we reached the platforms.

At Kings Cross, I finally see 317342 and 91110, two numbers I was desperate to see! Two HSTs or three come in and out, none I needed. An un-id'd 91 was near the tunnels for some reason, and after a while we find the only accommodation for the night was £45 or more. Not wanting to pay that, heart-of-wessex and I then decide to make an overnighter of it. Down to the Underground, we went to Liverpool Street. After some number crunching, we do the 1942 to Hertford East, having seen it being formed of 317513, declassified FC, so off we went!

At Hertford, we buy a Permit To Travel, then went back. At Cheshunt, the train is diverted via Seven Sisters due to a fatality, so it's running back to declassified FC (although how it was ever classed as FC I don't know!) to do it down that line! Back at Liverpool Street, I finally finish my Stanstead Express 317/7s! A bit of number crunching on platforms 11-16, we go to the other platforms to see the 'one' MK3 set. We have a good trial of them. FC is WELL nice in these! SC is good too, even the extra seats in SC are reasonable! There was a VT liveried and conditioned MK3 in it still, the DVT also in VT colours. We consider getting this to Stratford, and jump off here, but the barriers stop us doing this. Damn. We take refreshed 315822 to Stratford instead, as I wanted to try one out. The colours! Disgusting!

A bit of number crunching at Stratford follows, then down to the low level station for the 2312 to Willesden Junction Low Level, just to do the limited line off the NLL to the low level station. A freezing cold station makes waiting for the delayed Tube service to Waterloo irritating. But I do see 150128 here, my last SL 150! At last! At 0010, we finally leave for Waterloo.

A bad decision follows at Baker Street, where we change for the 'faster' Jubilee line. It comes about 9 minutes later, but defective doors means we terminate at Bond Street. Turns out I needed to tick this station off! We get a train 2 minutes later, but know for sure we've missed the 0042 via Point Pleasant Junction. Damn. We also miss the 0105, so try the 0142.

At Waterloo, we saw a VERY dirty 66038 on platform 19. Photted this, then went for a box machine to Twickenham via Raynes Park. This is the 0142, which we hoped went via Point Pleasant, but it didn't. Darn. We got off at Twickenham at 0230, got a delayed Night Bus on N33 to Piccadilly. We change here for a bus to Trafalgar Square, then go to a nearby Tesco. We then wait AGES for a bus to Liverpool Street, so as to get the 0430 to Stansted Airport, non-stop all the way. We get there just in time, but it leaves about 15 down. Photos in the meantime of the 317 and a nearby DBSO off platform 12 take some time off the wait for us to go. Sprinter leaves us here to go home. Lucky bugger, considerably warmer there!

I do FC for much of the route to Stansted, leaving it just a few minutes before arrival there. We take some photos here, trying in vain to find the transit to mark it off. We return to the platforms, getting 317668 on the return to Liverpool Street on the 0600 service to London.

Back in London, we buy Z1-4 TCs, then move onto a Circle line train EB to Victoria. Non-stop through Cannon Street, woohoo! Breakfast is the order of the day from Upper Crust next, then we get 377126 to Selhurst.

The reason why we came here is to see the stock in the depot and hopefully find 455835, the only box machine heart-of-wessex needed. Unfortunately, this was not to be. We did see 1705 in here, as well as a 377 without one of the vehicles on it. Which one this was we couldn't tell. We see 171804 I believe (or 805, heart-of-wessex if this was the one we saw, confirm this with me as I need that one!). We see 171722 and 171721 here as well, the latter I needed. 66044 is nearby too, with an engineers train.

We soon find Norwood Junction station, then get the 0851 to London Bridge, the route turning out to be one I needed! Sweet! Some number crunching goes on at London Bridge, then we proceed to Waterloo East, on some 465, I forget which at this time. Short walk onto Waterloo follows, and we get another box machine (poor heart-of-wessex, he hates them!) to Clapham Junction. Some more searching for 455835 goes on, but still no luck.

We go back on a 377 to Victoria, which was so packed we went in FC. I sat down, some ignorant gentleman nearby didn't move to occupy the window seat, so heart-of-wessex stood up. We decide to go to Paddington now, so down to the Circle line for a train WB then, having nearly got a 'D' stock (I was half asleep!). Here, we hear the familar ying-ying (again, third time today!) on the approach to the platforms. We find 67029 is in, with a charter! We go up platform 8 to see what was on the other end, it being 6024 'King Edward I'! On a non-stop run to Stratford-upon-Avon! Lucky gits on that!

Much photting goes on, it eventually leaves with a HUGE amount of steam. I'm standing on platform 8 filming it, the result being pretty impressive on my cam! Lined up against a HST it looked rather out of place! A quick trip to WHSmith, then it's waiting for the 1237 to Swansea, which heart-of-wessex was taking to Chippenham, I decided I would take it too to Reading. Here, it arrives 5 up, 7 down on departure! My HST to Hereford leaves at 1325, down 7 too! Further delayed near Didcot, due to engineers here. Worcester Shrub Hill sees us again delayed waiting for the late-running 180 off the single line from Foregate Street. We arrive 15-16 down at Hereford. A quick phot of 43071 at the front, with a filming of the move to the headshunt, then I get a lift home.

And that, as they say, is that. A VERY successful weekend! Bring on a London trip like THAT again!
 
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