East Midlands Roving, April 2012

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East Midland 7 Day Rover ticket trip, Contains mild Pork Pie usage ...
Saturday:
It's always good to walk to town to Farming Weekly on Radio 4, isn't it? Maybe not then, but starting off your trip with a HST from Doncaster to Peterborough is a fairly decent way to do so.

There's a charter in at Peterborough, a couple of 47's top & tail it, then it's 170 time to Nuneaton where an hours scan round town gets followed by seeing Britannia race through just before the 350 to Stafford.

Day out in Stafford followed by a repeat of Britannia and a 220 to Stoke, with a seat as well, and a 153 to Derby - interesting thing to note, we get held up after Tutbury & the rumour is it involves hitting a sheep - a 221 to Sheffield and 144 back to Doncaster finish the day off in some sort of style
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Sunday.

Afternoon out in Peterborough, a 91 down there and a look at the Nene Valley Railway before an attempt to get back through Sheffield - a pair of 158's on the Liverpool service go to Chesterfield but due to line work they're not going to Sheffield. Reject the idea of going round the Dore curve in favour of the freight line through to Beighton on a Hst, the new line of the day. Back home on a 185.

Monday.

The 09:25 First Hull Trains service to London is cancelled due to technical difficulties (on fire?) so people are being told to get the 9:16 or 9:45, my choice of purple jumper, grey jeans and shabby light grey trainers leads to me being mistaken for East Coast staff because by mistake I've dressed in the colour of their trains!

91 Down to Grantham it is then, followed by a noisy 158 to Skegness for an hour of Fish & Chip eating before going back to Boston on another 158. After this it's a 153 to Heckington to have a look at the windmill & there's not really much else there. This then would be a good place to get stuck after the next train is cancelled, so it's off to the pub for beer and a pork pie before the 158 to Sleaford and 153 back to Doncaster via Lincoln.

Tuesday

Did that guard really say "Tickets from Meadowhell" on the 153 to Sheffield, I'm sure he did and the people in front of me are as well, it's a couple of 222's afterwards to Leicester and then on to Bedford to have a look at the Airship hangers at Cardington. There was a class 70 outside Leciester, didn't catch which one though.

Afterwards it's a 222 up to Corby and back to Kettering, and then a couple more to Leicester and Sheffield, followed by a 185 again back to Doncaster.

Wednesday

It's chucking it down today, a brief trip to Grimsby on a 170 to meet yet another 153 down to Lincoln via Market Rasen and as it's still raining heavily a pair of 153's to Nottingham for some record shopping and general rain avoidance. It doesn't really stop raining until Worksop, reached on a packed 156, and deciding not to bother having a look round I go to the station pub for a beer before the 144 into Sheffield, which gets me there in time for a 158 back to Doncaster.

Thursday

Back on the 153 to Sheffield again, and then on to Tamworth on a HST where it's still chucking it down like mad and I have an hour to kill - nipped and got a sandwich - before a 350 to Milton Keynes. I'm not 100% sure that my ticket is valid on Southern Trains, so it's a good job no conductor turns up on the 377 to Bletchley.

Following a look around Bletchley Park, very good indeed, it's a 150 to Bedford and a 222 back to Nottingham. 158's to Sheffield and Doncaster are followed by a 321 to Bentley, just in time for it and I'm not walking home tonight!

Friday

Last day, and it's one that's avoiding the use of the 153 this morning in favour of a 91 down to Peterborough to catch the Melton Mowbray train (170) and eat some pork pie with stilton cheese topping ... mmmm

Following that it's another 170 to Nuneaton and a bit of a dash for the 153 to Coventry, a look round the old Cathedral and a quick trip on a 390 down to Rugby. A Quick look at timetables in the ticket office informs my next move down to Milton Keynes again on a 350, saw the concrete cows in the park just after Wolverton and spent a while watching 390's pass through the station at high speed as the train was late.

Another 390 non-stop to Stoke on the Stafford bypass line, slow enough past Colwich Junction to see the memorial garden, and following a quick pop into Sunny Stores near the station for food and drink it's packed 153 to Derby. I mean packed too, and there's the owner of a rain soaked dog in the vestibule with me, so it's also a smelly ride too, even a 142 would've been better on this particular ride.

Manage to get a seat on the 220 to Sheffield, which is lucky because I got onto it at the toilet end of the carriage and as it was busy I'd have probably ended up stood there unable to move out of smell range. Finally in a bit of what-the-hell-ness it's a 142 back to Doncaster, I've avoided them all week so it makes no sense to catch one really.

Back to pub for a few beers, then a few more ... :)
 
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