Avoiding the Tube if possible

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Wuffle

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We have a holiday booked this summer and will be arriving at London Liverpool St and need to get to London Paddington to depart to Bath
My wife has never been keen on the tube and even less so now, the alternatives we've looked at are ;
1. Black Cab between the termini
2. Stratford - Richmond line
3. Going via another route - Norwich - Birmingham - Bath looks doable

I would be grateful for any advice
 
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Gloster

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If it is the tube specifically that she dislikes, then you could always use the subsurface lines. The Circle or Hammersmith & City do it without a change to Paddington.
 
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Dave W

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And if she doesn't like subsurface either, the Overground trains are pretty similar inside so I doubt she'll care much for that (although I guess it's outside...)

I'd say Cab or PH is your best bet. The bus will take days.
 

Ianno87

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What is she not keen about in particular? Risk of getting lost? I'd suggest cab would be best option.

If crowdedness is an issue, then I wouldn't recommend the Overground route, as that's been near normal busy throughout 'hostilities'; she'd be better getting the Circle line.
 

yorkie

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If it is the tube specifically that she dislikes, then you could always use the subsurface lines. The Circle or Hammersmith & City do it without a change to Paddington.
Agreed. The subsurface lines are really not materially different to Thameslink.

I can remember travelling with a group of football fans and some of them being apprehensive of taking the tube, but when I asked what they didn't like, it was related to escalators, the small size of the trains and generally disliking the idea of being deep below the ground. So I took them on a sub surface line and that solved the problem!

The term "tube" is used by TfL to mean any service operated by London Underground, while in the minds of the general public it tends to be associated with any form of transport that is frequent. But actual tube lines would not need to be taken for a journey between Liverpool Street and Paddington.
 

dmncf

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I recommend getting the Circle line in the clockwise direction as a low stress route. In that direction, it's step-free at Liverpool Street and Paddington, avoiding climbing narrow stairs and footbridges.
 

swt_passenger

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Stratford to Richmond is very little use if wanting Paddington I think. Getting on the H&C at Liverpool St you’re on an open air platform, and off again at Paddington you’re basically within the mainline station anyway.
 

D841 Roebuck

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How about:
Train Norwich to Liverpool St.
Walk down to the Tower Pier.
London Clipper boat to either the Royal Festival Hall or the London Eye (both near Waterloo Station). Train to Salisbury, then up to Bath. Might be fun, dependent on luggage...
 

Hadders

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I agree with taking the Circle Line. There are no escalators involved at Liverpool Street or Paddington. The Circle Trains themselves are more normal size rather than the lower height trains that run on the deep level lines. They are also air conditioned.

It is by far the quickest and most straightforward way.
 

Hadders

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Takes 20 minutes on the Circle Line.
 

pelli

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If the issue is potential crowding (or just mixing with other passengers) then is it possible to reduce by going to the very front of the train? The main stations on the way ought to be:
  • Liverpool Street (access at the centre)
  • Moorgate (access at the very rear)
  • King's Cross St. Pancras (access at the centre and very rear)
  • maybe Euston Square (access near the front)
  • Baker Street (access at the very rear)
  • Paddington (access near the front)
so at the very front of the train you would expect to see fewer casual travellers (boarding by the access point due to not spreading out along the platform) as well as frequent travellers (positioning themselves to disembark by the access point at their destination).

Also is it worth avoiding the Hammersmith&City trains which I would expect have more passengers on board already coming in from the East, compared with the Circle having just come round the bend?

I haven't really travelled on LU for over a year now so would be interesting to hear what the situation is on under the ground...
 

181

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How about:
Train Norwich to Liverpool St.
Walk down to the Tower Pier.
London Clipper boat to either the Royal Festival Hall or the London Eye (both near Waterloo Station). Train to Salisbury, then up to Bath. Might be fun, dependent on luggage...
An alternative way of getting to Waterloo would be to walk to London Bridge (or indeed get a taxi, which would be rather cheaper than getting one all the way to Paddington) and get the train from there.

Once at Waterloo, you could also get the train to Reading and pick up the usual route there; or the pre-Covid timetable (I'm not sure of the current situation) had a few through trains per day from Waterloo to Bath.

Stratford to Richmond is very little use if wanting Paddington I think. Getting on the H&C at Liverpool St you’re on an open air platform, and off again at Paddington you’re basically within the mainline station anyway.
Although you can get a train from Richmond to Reading.

All these options would take a lot longer than the direct route, but that might not matter if you're not in a hurry.
 

Non Multi

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Metropolitan from Liverpool St, change at Great Portland Street for Circle/H&C to Paddington (to avoid an extra walk changing at Baker St). If a train is crowded, wait for the next one along.
 

jfisher21

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Yes the met line from Liverpool street is nearly always empty at that point, so if going to Paddington I often take it and change at baker street for a short ride on the bakerloo to Paddington (which has also emptied out a bit by baker street)
 

Wuffle

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Many thanks for all your replies
It's been a long time since my wife went by tube as we have moved away from being close to London, she was never a great fan but the thought of using it again has been an irrational worry for her, still cannot explain it. Both her late father and myself have commuted on the District line
 

jfisher21

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If you have a smartphone you could download the Uber application, that will get you private hire cars at a lower cost than black cabs.

Or Norwich - Stansted by train. Then National Express coach to Paddington. Note these are currently not running but may restart before your journey.
 
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