Martin’s Mad Mile-athon attempt for NSPCC – 1st June – Please give me your support!

Discussion in 'Trip Planning & Reports' started by evotista, 10 May 2015.

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  1. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Martin’s Mad Mile-athon attempt for NSPCC – 1st June – Please give me your support!

    First off thanks to the Moderators for giving permission for me to create this as a separate thread, but I’ve been working on this for a while and now I’ld like to get the support of the forum in on this.

    So what’s the plan….well inspired by several threads from this forum and the likes of EM2 and Peter Mugridge in their fine efforts, I’ve decided to set up my own Charity Challenge on behalf of the NSPCC and on 1st June (3 weeks away!!) I will attempt to set a (unofficial) record of maximum unique miles travelled by train in the UK in a continuous 24 hour period.

    I have established a JustGiving website in support of my efforts to raise money for NSPCC…the link is here

    http://www.justgiving.com/Martin-Waters-1400miles


    On this website you can read about why I’m doing this and the fine work that the NSPCC does….please help me towards my target, every donation (however small) will be gratefully received.

    The headline is 1400 miles, 24 hours…and the route is as follows as published on the GB published timetable (I’m aware WTT is slightly different):

    Ashford International 05:13 – London St Pancras 05:51
    London Euston 06:16 – Stockport 08:16
    Stockport 08:28 – Sheffield 09:08
    Sheffield 09:29 – London St Pancras 11:30
    London Kings Cross 12:00 – Edinburgh Waverley 16:22
    Edinburgh Waverley 16:52 – Birmingham New Street 21:05
    Birmingham Moor Street 21:18 – London Marylebone 23:13
    London Paddington 23:45 – Ivybridge (pass) 05:10

    Total = 1459 miles, 18 chains

    The 24 hours will lapse officially if everything goes to plan somewhere shortly after Ivybridge, unfortunately the sleeper has been retimed on this day since I organised the event, as originally it looked like an on time arrival into Plymouth might be possible before the 24 hours times out on me.

    Given the breadth of forum experience, are there any top tips you have about the trip?….I’ve considered multiple routes and this is the best one I could balance out with a probable chance of success whilst still retaining an element of contingency if everything starts to go wrong!!

    Anyhow, please have a read of my JustGiving page, and I would welcome any comments on this thread regards how to optimise the changes of which there are 7!!...the Birmingham one being particularly hairy……oh well, no risk no reward eh!

    Whatever happens on the day, expect a full on trip report with - fingers crossed! - a story of success I hope.
     
    Last edited: 10 May 2015
  2. PeterY

    PeterY Member

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    Good luck Martin. Surprising just how far you can get in 24 hours. Just made a small donation.
     
  3. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Many thanks PeterY for your support...it is surprising how far you can go isn't it...the difficulty is trying to find routes without doubling back whilst still going as fast as possible!

    Anyway, if I was just looking to maximise mileage, I could have just gone up and down to Stafford multiple times from Euston on the WCML , but then there would have been no challenge (or interest) in doing that!
     
  4. EM2

    EM2 Established Member

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    Looks a very sensible route!
    That Birmingham connection looks a bit tight, though. You'll need your trainers on for that bit ;)
     
  5. evotista

    evotista Member

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    It is tight I agree...but I've timed walking it at 6 mins 15 secs and with my trainers primed I reckon I can run it in 4 mins!!

    It will be a crunch connection on my challenge...I've just got to pray that the VT services hang together on that day!...here's hoping:!:
     
  6. EM2

    EM2 Established Member

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    VT were the only ones that let me down, but even then it was really NR's fault...
     
  7. 168lover

    168lover Member

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    I've done train to train moor street-new street in 5 mins before. 13 mins= EASY!!!

    Good luck with your challenge, hope you achieve it and make lots of money for charity!
     
  8. Iskra

    Iskra Established Member

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    The sleeper can often run significantly earlier or later than the timetable so you could even get further than planned in 24hrs I think.
     
  9. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    First of all, good on you for doing this for a good cause, I've often considered something similiar. Maximum mileage in 24 hours, as much of the LM network as possible in a day, that sort of thing. Unlike yourself I've never had the guts to even try it!

    It's an interesting route you've got there, a rather expensive one if you're paying the fares for those routes and at peak times! Beating 1,459 miles in 24 hours wouldn't be easy. Not impossible though I reckon, and yes I'm already trying to establish a fast route where you can beat that figure!

    25 minutes off the first train at St Pancras to then get to Euston and find the right platform's going to be tight, but should still be makeable. What concerns me hugely is the tight connections in both Birmingham off the 1652 from Edinburgh and in London between Marylebone and Paddington. 32 minutes should be absolutely fine, but it's looking a bit brave. I certainly wouldn't rely on that personally, but if you're up for that challenge and have an emergency plan of action then I wish you luck!

    I like your route, certainly it takes in some nice sections of the network. My only other major concern at this time would be whether you've got the stamina for this challenge. If that comes across badly, I genuinely don't intend it to sound nasty. My reason for this is that even a 12 hour day on the rails can be absolutely exhausting, even when you're used to endurance days going up and down the country all day. Yes I think it's fair to say I have that sort of experience! 24 hours on the move will be a tough challenge, even I would have doubts as to doing it. You genuinely don't realise how tiring sitting down and travelling all day is until you do it yourself!

    However, you are more than determined I see, which is a good sign. Even so, take this Top Tip with you:

    Make sure you've stocked up on plenty of food and drink before your trip, you just don't know when you're going to need it. I do speak from experience of course, never rely on the buffet/trolley service being there!

    Finally for now, where did you get your time for the transfer between New Street and Moor Street? It can take half that time if not more just to get out of the station at New Street sometimes. At 2105 you should be OK, and you obviously know the route, but I'd still be a bit nervous having just 13 minutes between trains!

    I think my record between the two is around 7 minutes, platform to platform. I hope you're fit and healthy and ready to fight through crowds. Which after almost 16 hours of being on the move is a bit of an ask!

    All being well, I'll have a decent payday on the way so I should be able to forward some sort of donation. I won't know this until just before you do this trip, so hopefully it'll still arrive OK before the event.
     
  10. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Thanks for your comments and insights Techni...it is going to be without doubt a physically and mentally tiring challenge...of that I'm under no illusions about.

    I'm confident on the timing between platform at New Street and the gates at Moor Street...and then when running I'm sure comfortably 5 mins is do-able even when tired...adrenaline will kick in I'm sure.

    I've timed the Marylebone connection at 14 mins (walking) and the St Pancras to Euston connection at 8 mins (again walking).....these give me hope I can do them significantly faster at running pace!

    The tickets have all come out of my pocket....I got no where with getting the TOCs to help out...but I didn't expect them to anyway....and for the vast majority they're cheap as chips Advance fares.

    However the cost is irrelevant ....my motivation is all in memory of my best friend Steve who died last year of Lymphoma at a far too short 57 years old. His death has proven to me that life is frankly just too short to sit around putting aside ideas like this, and I came to the conclusion that I had to do this crazy challenge last November. I hope in doing so i can raise money in his memory for his nominated charity, and for myself, do something good to help NSPCC's cause.

    Keep the comments flowing .... if nothing else it keeps me motivated to keep pushing on with the fundraising to know that others are giving me their backing (verbal and/or financial!):D
     
  11. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Good to hear you're already well aware of what strains this day will put on you!

    I wish you all the luck in the world with New Street to Moor Street, I'm certain I can comfortably-ish do it in 10 minutes myself platform to platform, with all the traffic lights against me. However you've always got to plan for Worst Case Scenario. I would still advise making a Plan B in case it's all gone Pete Tong on the day. Maybe even a Plan C!

    14 minutes to walk Marylebone to Paddington seems optimistic at best. Personally I'd aim to do it in 20 minutes, admittedly I've not done that walk since 2010 if not before then, so memory is hazy on the exact times and landmarks now!

    8 minutes St Pancras to Euston is doable, but that's still going quite a lot like a rocket. Door to door those times are acceptable but if you've got to go to platform 18 at Euston that's quite a walk from the main entrance!

    Fair games :)

    Ouch, nasty times :(

    Very much a good choice to just plough on and get this challenge going in the first place, much more so with those reasons behind you! I hope too you raise a decent sum, which I'll be more than happy to help with. I can say for sure it won't be an enormous sum, certainly if I could do so I would, but it'll certainly be done.

    Indeed, I've been quite persuaded to shove in the effort to do the same sort of thing myself at some point. Something to ponder on the bus to town in a few hours time at least!

    In that case, I'll offer another Top Tip:

    Get some favourite tunes on your MP3 player, phone or whatever. Regardless of what your preferred genre is, if it makes you happy, pumped up and raises morale, get it ready for this trip. It's amazing how well a tune with a good BPM, a decent bit of bass and some good vocals goes with a nice fast run, and how well it boosts up the spirits! I don't have to tell you I know this from experience :lol:

    Are you on Twitter? If so maybe some tweets as you go along to keep us all updated with how things are going, hopefully with some spirits-rallying tweeted back to keep you going! I'm already picturing the hashtag, #MadMileathon ;)

    Oh aye, I really do hope you'll stick to it and post your trip report. I've already got the feeling it'll be a good read :D
     
  12. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    If the train is on time at New Street then it should be easy to make a 13 minute connection from BHM-BMO. I have done a platform to platform connection in 4 mins before (although that was running because I had only given myself 7 minutes between off one train and onto another).
     
  13. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Thanks fishquinn....it confirms that I think it is do-able in 4ish minutes ...especially given it will be 9pm on a random Monday night..so the platforms, concourses and pavements should be fairly clear.

    My main concern is getting across the road opposite Moor Street without getting run over!!...and then the slog up the stairs and down again onto Platform 1!

    Any thought anyone about whether the barriers will be de-activated at that time on a Monday night?...I have a ticket obviously , but if they are de-activated (open) then that's one less thing to have to get through.
     
  14. Kite159

    Kite159 Established Member

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    The barriers were open at around 7pm last Saturday night (the 2nd), so I would imagine at 9pm they would be open.

    Good luck :)
     
  15. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Thanks Kite....I suspected that the barriers are likely to be open at that time. On a related question... does anyone know if Moor Street always has platform side despatch staff, even at that time on a Monday evening?
     
  16. yorkie

    yorkie Administrator Staff Member Administrator

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    You probably already know this, but quickest route is via Brill Place/Phoenix Road; See map.

    It's also a lot easier to run this way (if that becomes necessary) than via the much busier Euston Road.
     
  17. DasLunatic

    DasLunatic Member

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    I'd imagine so - but having not used Chiltern in about 2 1/2 years, don't quote me.

    Anyways, good luck, mate. Buy yourself first-class tickets all the way - you'll need all the rest you can get.
     
  18. adrock1976

    adrock1976 Established Member

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    Assuming the Edinburgh Waverley - Birmingham NS leg runs to time, an alternative would be to alight at Wolverhampton (scheduled arrival 20:38 - normally Platform 4) and cross to the island platform (2 and 3) to pick up the Manchester P - Bournemouth service (dep WVH 20:44) and arriving into BHM at 21:00.

    This would give you an extra 5 minutes to play with. However, if the Bournemouth train is running late, the EDB _ EUS you've alighted from departs WVH at 20:47.

    In peace

    Adam
     
  19. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Adrock,

    Good spot ...and in fact I recently picked up on this...the fact that the Euston service lays over in Platform 4 and lets the XC service go ahead from Plat 3. This would get me another 5 mins earlier in to New Street which would be good

    However , my chief concern is that the EDB - BHM service is going to run late earlier in it's run (the Raildar website shows it often does!) , which would scupper any advantage out of doing the Wolverhampton quick change...here's hoping anyway.

    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Yes...I'm already on that route Yorkie...I walked it from Euston to St Pancras side entrance a few weeks back, and it will be the route I use during the challenge. So as I going flying along, I'm less likely to hurtle into some unsuspecting tourists emerging out of Kings Cross and St Pancras tube entrance on Euston Road!
    --- old post above --- --- new post below ---
    Another quick question for everyone....is there anyway online of confirming as accurately as possible the train miles for my Mad Mile-athon?...the rail miles engine doesn't seem to be available at the moment.
     
    Last edited: 12 May 2015
  20. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Apparently the RailMiles Mileage Engine is back online as of last night. As a subscriber I don't need to use that one so O haven't got a link or owt.
     
  21. CC 72100

    CC 72100 Established Member

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  22. iainbhx

    iainbhx Member

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    I have a BHM-BMO connection most nights on my way home, I officially have 13 minutes during evening rush hour. Unless the inbound is more than 5 minutes late, I've never failed to make it and I'm a fat bloke who can only waddle fast. My record is just under 6 minutes.

    The BMO barriers will be open at that time, so no worries about that. Go straight to the Platform 1 entrance not go into Platform 2 and over the footbridge, it saves a minute or so.
     
  23. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Many thanks Iainbhx.....having only been to Birmingham Moor Street a couple of times in recent years, I wasn't even aware there was a separates entrance directly onto Platform 1!

    Is anyone aware if this entrance will be open at 9pm on a Monday night...or is it likely only the main entrance is open?

    Also i notice that the picture of BMO on the National Rail website is out of date!...it shows Plat 1 and 2 being the other way round and Plat 3 - 4 disused!...look at this link

    http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/SME/html/NRE_BMO/plan.html?rtnloc=BMO

    Just to confirm for my sanity...please can someone re-confirm to me Platform 1 is the one that is the through platform to head to Marylebone from? (i.e. the one over the footbridge if coming in through the main entrance)...and not as shown in the diagram?!
     
  24. iainbhx

    iainbhx Member

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    Yes, you go along the Queensway and there is an entrance to platform 1 after you have crossed the over bridge. If it is raining, the stairs can be slippy.

    The entrance has been there for years, I've used it as late as 9pm in the week and it's been open. I'll see if I can find out for you. If the train is running through Moor Street, it will call there on Platform 1, if it is a Moor Street starting service, it will probably use Platform 3. It won't save much time, but if you are down to a minute to go, it may save vital seconds.
     
  25. Kristofferson

    Kristofferson Established Member

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  26. evotista

    evotista Member

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    Hi all,

    With the clock ticking down towards my Mad Mile-athon...is there anybody else aware if the entrance for Platform 1 directly off the road at Birmingham Moor Street is likely to be open at 9pm on a Monday evening?

    The fundraising is still coming on , so feel free to contribute...

    http://www.justgiving.com/Martin-Waters-1400miles

    Here's the route of Madness....

    [​IMG]rsz_1mad_mile-athon_2 by M W, on Flickr

    All I need now is any strike threat to definitely go away..
     
  27. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    I wouldn't count on that entrance direct to platform 1 being open, I would suggest it depends on whether there's anyone to man the barrier or not.

    I haven't worked on my financial calculations yet, so haven't sent a donation over yet but I am to have that much worked out this morning.
     
  28. crispy1978

    crispy1978 Established Member

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    Sounds like a great idea, and a fantastic way to raise funds for a very worthwhile cause.

    I agree with Tech - a Twitter hashtag would be great for you to raise the profile and get more donations on the day.

    I'll drop a donation in over the weekend. Hope you have a hassle-free day with delays!
     
  29. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    With no delays I take it you meant to put? ;)

    Yes to the hashtag, just makes it easier to follow all the updates. Hence my use of them. If you need help thinking of a good one I'm sure we can help!

    Donation to now be sent over on Sunday, been outrageously busy today and tomorrow is lined up to be insane!
     
  30. iainbhx

    iainbhx Member

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    I asked the staff, they say that it is open until the last train usually.

    The gate line at Moor Street is wide open at that time of night, the barriers on Platform 1 are often open when I go to catch the 18:31 and both the Platform 1 dateline and the main gate line are usually open by 7pm.
     
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