Techniquest's Rolling Review of 2015

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Techniquest, 3 May 2015.

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  1. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    3 months late starting this one, I know, but let's get it started now we've cleared the first third of the year! Obviously I'm going to come back to this one at the end of every month (well, this month I'm on a bash so I'll be back as soon as possible in June to review May) to keep this going!

    January 2015

    Not a great start to the year, with just one day's bashing throughout the whole month. Saving money was a key reason, those of you with good memories will recall I was going to save money every month for an Australian trip in spring 2016. Obviously that's not happening now, I'm enjoying the UK rail scene far too much to head to the other side of the world!

    First use of the new Midland Metro trams was had though on 5th January, and a farewell to 67s on Chiltern was also had. Oh crikey aye, remember when the 68s were going into squadron service any time soon and the 67s were going elsewhere? Still plenty of 67 action available I see!

    4 winners wasn't the best start to the year but a reasonable 168m65c had, with 150 and 153 action had on the way to Birmingham and more 150 action had home which was welcome! First trains of the year fell to 153366 and 150105, not a bad start. What will I end with I can't help but wonder, probably not a 150 or 153!

    February 2015

    Oh yes, February was far better! The first major bash of the year, a Kent Rover. An absolute megaton of required shacks were scored in those 3 days, despite coming down with a nasty cold in the middle of the trip. To be fair it was outrageously cold in Kent at the time! Even so I didn't let it knock me down and I kept going with the primary mission of clearing all stations in the Kent Rover area. Which I did indeed on the third day of the trip, and I finally managed to get my last 375 for sight! I still can't put into words how happy I was about that, no more bending my neck around all sorts of angles to try and find it anywhere! :D Of course the epic evening peak at Sevenoaks was well appreciated too and for that alone I'm going back down there in 2016 to have another go at clearing my 375s! Of course the chance to go after my last 8 395s will be welcome too!

    A farewell to East Coast was also made with a trip to Newcastle, using my only ever Rewards ticket. I so wish I'd used that more than I did, not that I can remember why I didn't at the time. Of course, my return to East Coast Rewards was also prompted by Red Spotted Hanky and their insistance on charging booking fees! A massive session was had on the Tyne and Wear Metro, at differing lengths of time on each of the 3 days I was up there, my NREA looks a LOT better than it did! My first Tyne and Tees Day Ranger was also sampled and I loved it, scoring plenty of required shacks and winners along the way. I still recommend doing one to anyone, I'm certainly going back up there in 2016 if not before to get cracking on the rest of the shacks and of course the many 142s and 156s I still need up there!

    I still can't believe how warm it was in the North East mind, not that I was complaining! :lol:

    A couple of weeks later was 2015's first Great Escape. With some massive help from Twitter Towers at LM, I managed to get my last 350/2 and I also got started on the 350/3s. I also finally finished my LM 321s at last, although this was one was by chance! I got what was probably my last chance too, the day after, for some Starship action on the Wolverhampton to Birmingham route, as it's all gone to 350s now by the looks of it.

    2,126m05c for February so you can imagine I was ridiculously happy with that! I've lost where I noted the number of winners and required shacks, but trust me that they were both very decent numbers! My moves book is elsewhere at this time, but the figures will of course be included in the Year End Review figures!

    March 2015

    Oh yes, of course I finally did my Metrolink day! As per usual, I've covered all this in the trip reports (for newcomers, please refer to "Techniquest's Sticky Digits Chasing (Trip Reports)" on this forum if you're interested) and on Twitter, but I finally got the Metrolink network covered entirely on this trip, with an absolutely massive amount of required sightings and winners had, not to mention the amount of required shacks scored. It's safe to say I made my money's worth out of the day tickets I bought!

    A few weeks later, I was back out. Good Golly Gosh I made up for the time I hadn't spent on the rails this year, and indeed I might just have managed to make up for the slow start in 2014 as well now! I of course refer to the 3 day session in London, which although it didn't include getting many required shacks done, I did score a truckload of winners! I finished my 321s for sight at long, long last by chance in the evening peak at Stratford on day 1, which was beyond welcome! Very slowly I'm running out of trains I need to see! :D Day 1 was also most excellent as I finally got to meet one of the legends of this forum, noddy1878, which had been waiting to happen for quite some time getting by now! He's also got me into Spoons Scratching, and before that I'd got Untappd on my phone and I've become a bit of a beer ticker now too!

    Day 2 of that trip had me finally meeting another legend of this forum, Kite159. That had been overdue for months too, and it was another excellent day in the sunshine and heat scoring away. This time it was the turn of the GN evening peak and that was more than successful, fair games! Day 3 saw me spend absolutely ages on the DLR, following a bit of a spin on the NLL doing some shack scratching. I more than made up for the lack of shack attacks on the previous 2 days that's for sure, and I came away from the DLR hours later having visited every shack that I needed, which was quite a few. I also came away with a megaton of required sightings and an unofficial-turned-official-unit-of-measurement of winners too, a very productive time indeed! This one had a winner 390 coming to London, so imagine my surprise when I left Euston with a winner 390 too!

    992m31c in March, so close to clearing the magical thou for the month! Again, no figures for the total winners etc in March to hand, but I recall it was well over 100 in London alone!

    April 2015

    A couple of weeks had been taken off now to recover from that epic trip, and to catch up on bookwork. Not that I did much of the bookwork mind, I only achieved that fairly recently! I'd been surprised when I saw at London Euston, at the end of my London bash, that another LM Great Escape was on again soon. Naturally this had to be done, as I had only had 2 of the 10 350/3s at this point and needed to get cracking with them! Diagrams printed the night before, I went out armed with as much gen as I could get hold of at 0630! That situation soon enough changed for the better thankfully, and on the way up I decide to go for a slightly risky connection at Lichfield and go for some Starship action. It's been a while now, nearly 2 months, and this move had the opportunity for some proper distance on a Starship. How could I refuse a good run on my favourite class of EMU? Later throughout the day it dawns on me that unfortunately I won't get my last 350/3, 350369, which is also my last member of the LM fleet to get for haulage. Shame but still I have something to aim for now another time! Still, I'll be glad to not see the Rugby to Milton Keynes Central sector of the WCML for a while! :lol:

    I had the funds to go out the week after and, having not been for months, end up going to Liverpool. Sadly the hunt for my last 3 507s and last 508 was unsuccessful but I came home with just 1 MerseyRail-served station to get, so not all bad!

    The week after I was off to Birmingham for another hunt, this time I was after as many of the 7 390s I still needed for haulage. I decided to go old-school and not seek any gen at all. Well, apart from 350369 as that would determine which ticket I bought. As it was on Camden Carriage Sidings all day I stayed with the original plan. It's all been well documented in the trip report, but I only managed to score one 390 in the end. Too many 221s invading the previously 390-dominated area, so I went to try my luck on Chiltern. No luck there either, not a good day then!

    That day I'd seen required 67023 on the WAG-Ex, and couldn't get it that day so vowed to get it the next day. An oversleep put paid to that, so made sure to go for it the following day. £19.70 and an early start before work, but well worth it to get my 28th 67 in. Just 67007 and 67030 to get one day now!

    1,015m50c in April, which I was very happy with indeed! :D

    Which took us to the end of April, and as I type this I have a trip to Sheffield a week tomorrow to go for the PSUL curve, which is my last track to get on the Sheffield Supertram network, and of course as many of the 20 trams I need up there too. May's also got a Southern DaySave bash and a trip to West Yorkshire in there, so it should be a good one. I estimate around 650 miles on Mandatory Moves alone in May, so there's a chance I'll hit the 1,000 miles in a month again!

    I'll be back in just under a month to review May!
     
  2. PeterY

    PeterY Member

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    You certainly get about. Enjoyed reading your monthly diary.

    What is a Shack?
     
  3. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Glad you enjoyed it, I take it you've also enjoyed the many trip reports I post too.

    A shack is a station. I don't honestly remember where the name 'shack' came from to be honest!
     
  4. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    Could it be little stations like the ones on the Borderlands line or Denton or something like that. Windy run down, like little shacks. Probably not but it might be.
     
  5. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    More than likely, I do believe it came from the old school bashers, maybe one of them would know.
     
  6. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    My apologies all, I was away at the end of May and early June, so May 2015's review is a bit late! I'll try and get June's one somewhere near on time.

    May 2015

    It took 11 days to start the month's travels, but we got there in the end! Thanks to 37038 of this forum having mentioned it on my trip report thread, I'd booked to go to Sheffield for a Supertram bash. All the tweets can be found using #bashernation and the trip report can be read here http://www.railforums.co.uk/showpost.php?p=2162483&postcount=550

    The PSUL curve being do-able without massive investment in hotels and so on couldn't be turned down, and 37038 and myself had a good little bash there all in. Rather decent trip had with 9 winners and 14 winner shacks, plus a winner Spoons and 2 new beers added to my Untappd! May 11th was also the first day of the return of an evening bus service on my route to/from Hereford, with the last one now being 2045. So much easier to plan around that than it was with the last one at 1815 before!

    Before I knew it, I was on another bash 6 days later, this time a Southern DaySave and the first one of the year finally. All tweets can be found from #basherboi and the first day's trip report at http://www.railforums.co.uk/showpost.php?p=2171168&postcount=564 with Day 2 at http://www.railforums.co.uk/showpost.php?p=2171594&postcount=569

    It was of course an excellent time on Southern, even though my data allowance took an enormous hit on Day 1 and still somewhat of one on Day 2! I did do well here, and things were certainly looking up as I ended up finishing my 313/2s for sight and bringing down my requirements with 377s down to just 91. A lot better than it was before! Over the two days I scored 20 winners, including 2 on the Underground, and 6 required shacks. I believe I'm on 54 required shacks to get on Southern's network now, so it's all coming down slowly but surely!

    My May ended on May 31st with Day 1 of another bash, with tweets from this one being found using #techsgotthemoves across both days. Trip report for Day 1 of that trip can be found at http://www.railforums.co.uk/showpost.php?p=2186692&postcount=589 :) It was off to West Yorkshire for a bit of a clearout up there, originally intending to use a special Northern day ranger for just £12.50 on the Sunday and a West Yorkshire Day Rover the day after. I'd forgotten I couldn't do that on the Sunday, as it was barred to the special offer that week. So I swapped the planned tickets around. I had come down with a cold around 0200 the night before, but I wasn't giving up my trip for that! I meet up with 185143 of this forum during the interlude in Manchester Piccadilly on the northbound trip, which was an unexpected bonus even if I didn't see him straight away! The day was certainly most productive with 10 winners across a variety of classes, only 2 winner shacks but today ended up being more about filling the NREA than getting the shacks all done!

    Since I actually have some stats for once, here they are:

    Mileage for May: 1,190 miles and 76 chains :D
    Total winners for May: 39
    Total required shacks for May: 22

    Fares cost for May: £142.00
    Hotels cost for May: £84
    Bus fares cost for May: £10.30 (other journeys were by car)
    Other costs for May: £48.43

    Total cost for May's bashing: £284.73

    I suppose when you count it like that, it sounds a lot. Indeed, my eyes nearly popped out of my head when I saw how much it weighed in at, but then to come away with the results I did it wasn't actually that bad! I'm happy enough anyway, so that's all that matters.

    Stay tuned in about 3 weeks time for June's summary!
     
  7. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Ladies and gentlemen, we've passed the halfway point of 2015! Hard to believe it's July already, and as a result another entry into the Rolling Review!

    As we've hit half time now, I also include some half time stats. Granted I still need to sort out my tram moves yet from Monday, so the mileage figure won't be totally accurate but will do for now! I'm doing this review on my way to work, taking my moves book along especially for the stats!

    June 2015

    Certainly June was a bit different to the original plan! The month started on Day 2 of the Yorkshire visit, this time a day on Northern's special day ranger for £12.50. The goal was to clear the Harrogate Loop shacks, and the day got me all of them except Hammerton and Poppleton, two of the hourly service shacks which are awkward to get. I was pleased as punch with the results, even though I had to drag my Mum out to pick me up due to missing the planned bus, with a +125 or so until the last one! In decent weather I'd have got tea and had a couple of pints to kill the time, but I was just getting over a cold and it was really chucking it down with rain!

    A very good result still with 5 winners and 8 winner shacks!

    Two days later I was meeting forum member 47403 during his 3 day Midlands extravaganza after I finished work. We had a natter about all things railways, and I end up joining him on an implusive trip to Shrewsbury on the WAG-Ex with 67023, getting 175111 home. No winners of course, as I'd gone and got 67023 on a seperate pre-work trip in May, but we had a good time and the trip to Shrewsbury was over in no time!

    5 days later I was back out on the bash, this time to Nottingham. I hadn't done the trams up here since the first part of 2004, using a special offer ticket with Central Trains to do Cardiff to Nottingham and back for free. I covered all the track up there on that trip, sadly though I didn't record my moves at the time and all my footage is on distorted 8mm camcorder tapes, so I was basically going to Nottingham with an empty book! It was a very good trip indeed, with all the shacks done and now I'm waiting for the new lines to open before going back again. I also had my first 156 in quite a while, scoring off Beeston finally and later on scoring my first winner 222 in absolutely ages thanks to it running a bit late and being got-able from Long Eaton!

    With lots of new sights in Nottingham, including finally finishing the original trams for sight, I went home extremely happy with 15 winners and 20 winner shacks!

    6 days later I was in position, after a night out that went a bit belly up, to do a Ledbury to Hereford trip, adding 13 and a bit miles to 170503 and 170501 as a result. A week onwards, after recovering from illness, I manage to force my way down to Devon for a mini family break. They'd already gone down on Friday morning while I recovered, but I managed to score the Paignton to Kingswear line at very long last! Bonus on this occasion was a last-minute shunt move from D3014 which had to add 2 more MK1s to the train due to the anticipated demand from Kingswear on the way back, first 08 in the book in more than 4 years! Miniscule mileage, granted, and I have no idea how many chains a 2 MK1 shunt will have generated. I also score my first steam loco in quite some time with 7827 Lydham Manor. Only my second Manor ever, the other being 7802 Bradley Manor in October 2004 on a Past Time Rail charter. I really must get on with the nostalgia thread for that one, as it also had my first ever 37 on that tour, and what a way to start my love of 37s with NB 37203! :D <D

    Anyway, back in reality, I enjoyed the noise off the Manor, especially up Churston Bank. Admittedly I was also at the droplight imagining what it would be like with an EE loco, thrashtastic without a doubt! Line covered and it's back to Paignton with 7827 for another slow journey. RM tells me it's not even 7 miles each way, sure felt like longer than that! Torquay is also shack attacked while in the area, about time that one was done!

    The day after, on the long drive back north, there's time to divert and cover the Bicton Woodlands Railway, a pain in the neck to get by public transport. £8.95 just to get into the park plus another £1.90 to go on the train! Not a cheap bash at all, but it's very scenic and if you're in the area it's worth doing to get it out of the way.

    June was finished off with a West Midlands Daytripper. I had originally planned to go to Ebbw Vale Town today to do the new bit of track up there, however I had not yet had a 68 and wanted badly to catch up there! My first one is 68010 and I instantly fell in love with the class, the best new locos in quite some years! If ATW were using them on the WAG-Ex I'd be off to Newport so much more often! :lol: The 1312 from Snow Hill was cancelled so no more 68 bashing available after 68013 in the end, so I end up doing a 390 hunt instead. Amazingly the first one back from International was a winner and I'm now down to just 5 390s to find! :D

    Midland Metro tram bashing now filled a good bit of time before heading to Wolverhampton, having received some gen. My last active Ansaldo tram to score is had with 08, the only ones of those I've not had are 01, 02 and 11, not bad for someone who doesn't really do light rail much! Later on I get to Wolverhampton and yes, it did produce, 350369 was scored back to Birmingham! Last LM 350 and last member of the LM fleet now done! :D :D :D

    A bit more tram bashing got me down to just 12 more CAF trams to get here, not bad at all! Hopefully by next time I do trams the extension will be open to New Street Station! I go home very pleased indeed with 10 winners, now having been on/behind/in front of at least one of every class on the mainline network except for 70s. One day...

    So how did I do in June? Well not bad at all with 32 winners and 32 winner shacks!

    Some more stats then:

    Cost of fares in June 2015: 136.20
    Bus fares in June: 10.30
    Cost of hotels in June: 0
    General spending on June's bashing: 49.91
    Total expenditure: 196.41

    Not as bad as I thought it would be to be honest, must have missed a few bits of expenditure in the general one though!

    That lot took far longer to type up than expected, the half-time scores will have to wait until the commute home I'm afraid. No more time before work to do them, as I've got an European bash to start serious planning and discussion for with one of my my mates. No time like the present to start planning and creating budgets, saving timescales, lists of needs and wants on the trip etc! That'll all come in a seperate thread, possibly tomorrow morning or tonight.
     
  8. Clip

    Clip Established Member

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    For the mileage you do that really isn't bad money wise you know.
     
  9. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Only around 850 miles, probably a little less, for June I think. It's still not bad though!

    Got a lift home tonight so not done the half-time scores yet. Tea time shortly first!
     
  10. PeterY

    PeterY Member

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    Techniquest, you certainly know how to do some good trips in without spending vast sums of money.

    Great read.
     
  11. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Years of practice there, and ever since I learnt how to budget last year it's been easier to do a cheap trip.

    Don't get me wrong, I'd love to go back to the old days when I could go on random and implusive trips, not caring about how much I spent on food and all that. Still, that was back then (2004-2008)!

    Finally here are the half-time scores:

    Winners by month:

    January: 4
    February: 88 (took at least 5 counts to get that right!)
    March: 186 (those 3 days in London REALLY paid off!)
    April: 8 (yep, I was shocked too!)
    May: 40
    June: 32

    Total: 358

    Required shacks scored by month:

    January: 0
    February: 65
    March: 73
    April: 8 (wasn't a successful month for shacks or winners!)
    May: 21
    June: 32

    Total: 199

    (Surprising how long that took to count up! At least 40 minutes just to add them up out of the moves book, plus all the maths and so forth on a very bumpy ride to work this morning, so just over an hour to do that lot!)

    Cost of fares January - June: 659.50
    Cost of hotels January - June: 424.50
    Coach fares January - June: 0
    Air fares January - June: 0
    Bus fares for trips January - June: 57.60
    General trip spending January - June: 336.97

    Total cost for trips January - June: 1,478.57

    Don't ask how long that took to cross-reference from memo files on my phone, process it all into the calculator and add to this post! It was a lower amount than expected to be fair, the end of year figure is expected to hit 3,000 or so.

    In case you're wondering, yes it's all in GBP but the pound symbol displays just fine when I type it in my posts but it doesn't display properly once posted. I have no idea why my phone does that!

    Finally, a mileage count was due but my RailMiles subscription needs renewing, so I cannot currently provide the relevant details. Hopefully come year end I will have the relevant data! I can however recall the figure the figure was something around 6,200.

    Bring on the second half, due to kick off on 13th July for me. Not sure what that trip will entail but it will have to be cheap!
     
  12. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Now July is gone, the monthly review:

    July 2015

    It was a far quieter month than originally planned, as I spent a not insignificant amount of my bashing funds on the 'norm' trip to Ireland in September! The first trip of the month didn't arrive until 13th July, and it was quite the budget one too. To make it affordable, I got to and from Ebbw Vale with Stagecoach. 7.50 versus 22.80, no competition! I scored the extension to Ebbw Vale Town, having waited over 7 years for it after originally doing the line to Ebbw Vale Parkway in the first half of 2008! Pye Corner was also scored, and I just miss a bus back to Hereford thanks to delays on the rails. I don't think much of Ebbw Vale if I'm honest, which got covered extensively in the trip report, Tech's Ebbw Vale Town Bash. It was then quiet for a while, the bash a week after didn't happen and I ended up spending that day in town with mates instead. I suspect it would have been cheaper to have just gone and hoped for the best, but I did build up my Costa Coffee Club points significantly at least! So no rail stuff happened, apart from a brief spotting session that afternoon, again until 29th July. I don't need to introduce this one, do I? It was of course the first of 6 days of intensive bashing, all to celebrate the passing of 10 years since I upgraded myself from a spotter to a basher! The last few days of July formed the first half of that trip, scoring an excellent 19 winners and 17 required shacks.

    Some data then:

    Winners: 19
    Shack attacks: 17

    Cost of July's bashing

    Fares: 92.70
    Coach fares: 22.00
    Hotels ching: 105.56
    Bus fares: 17.80
    General expenditure: 68.78

    Total cost of July's adventures: 306.84

    Not bad at all really!
     
  13. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    It's time for another instalment of 2015's review!

    August 2015

    The first three days of the month were home to the second half of my epic 10th Bashversary trip, with the 4th day of the fantastic Freedom of the North West kicking off the month. The coach journey that night was less than pleasant, a shame considering it was my first overnight National Express trip. Mind you, it's fair to say it was better than Megabus Gold! The day in Strathclyde didn't exactly go to plan, but it still worked out nicely after all. My first 92 since October 2006 on the Down Lowland Cally Insomnie [nickname for the Caledonian Sleeper - Ed] was also more than welcome, although the very rough start from Carstairs wasn't! It was also a better night than the coach journey the previous night, which caused me to swear off overnight moves in the future! The half-day in London saw a lot cleared out, and before I know it I'm on my way home. Thankfully I had a day booked off work after it to recover, which was just as well as I was shattered and had 12 hours of sleep! 12 days later, an impulsive trip to Blackpool was booked, following the discovery finances were better than expected. I had originally planned to do a West Midlands Daytripper bash, but this trip would get required track, tons of shack scores and a lot of winners. Which it did, I got 19 winners for sight, 16 winners and 37 shack scores over the two days! All but 005 of the Blackpool trams were scored, and I added 5 winner Spoons to my Directory too.

    Certainly that was one of the more productive trips this year, clearing the available tram network that was open at that time, with new lines to cover on NET now to go and do with a Midland Metro extension also opening soon. The month was seen out with a trip to London, to position myself for 2015's railtour of choice, UKRailtours' The Yorkshire Byways. I finally clear my local National Express route to London, although I still have their route 321 (Aberdare to Leeds) to do in my area. Bashing in Zones 1 and 2 was the order of the day, as was having a bit of a social on the Sunday, and of course Bank Holiday Monday (August edition) was spent on the railtour. There was a ton of non-passenger track covered, so while it wasn't a fast day by any means, and exhausting at 15 hours long, I also scored my first winner 66 in quite some time, since early 2012 I believe! The month ended well with a pair of winning 377/6s, and plenty of scores for sight and haulage during the last 2 days of the month.

    Financial cost of August:

    Rail fares: 229.80
    Hotels ching: 62.56
    Coach fares: 27.60
    General spending: 112.09

    Total cost of August's bashing: 432.35

    Certainly an expensive month, but totally worth it! I haven't got the books with me to count up how many winners I had but it will have been 61 winners just out of the Blackpool and Byways trips! Shacks wise it was 40 out of just those two trips, including the second half of Basherversary those numbers will be a lot higher!

    A most productive month all in, September is not going to be quite as productive but will still be hellfire!
     
    Last edited: 3 Sep 2015
  14. Kristofferson

    Kristofferson Established Member

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    Been looking for this thread! Turns out it's hidden away here :lol:

    August was definitely not cheap for either of us!
     
  15. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    I didn't know where to put this to be honest, didn't seem appropriate to put it in the trip reports section!

    September's not being a cheap month for me, no quiet months until January!
     
  16. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    I know this is a little late, been a lot on lately! Here's my round up of September 2015:

    September kicked off well, with 4 winner 377s on the Mandatory Moves into London, heading home from UKRailtours' Yorkshire Byways excursion. Only a few days later, I was off to Edinburgh! It was also the first flights of 2015, with two planes scored from Flybe's fleet. I was of course going up for the Borders Railway opening, enjoying the company of Blindtraveller. It's a nice scenic line, but it does drag in places. That day saw me get my first 68 haulage north of the border, and the first on non-Chilternised coaches. The racket these things make is just unbelievable, a modern day Class 37! If only it was like this on Chiltern! The day just went by far too fast, it must be said. 10 days after I got home, I was on the 'norm' trip to Ireland. As anyone who read the trip report will confirm, for the most part it was not enjoyable! I came away with a ton of mileage and several winners though, as well as a few shack scores, so it wasn't a total wipeout! I go almost all year without flying then end up having three flights in one month! I'm now on 14 planes scored with Ryanair, a drop in the ocean compared to the size of their fleet! September is seen out on 27th September with a trip to Birmingham with Mum, so she can see the new John Lewis store and me to see the new New Street. As my trip report shows, I'm not a fan! The next day had been designated for a proper bash, however I just didn't feel up to it due to poor sleeping!

    September's numerical round up:

    Rail fares: 152.10 GBP and 25 EUR
    Bus fares: 8.10 GBP and 8.30 EUR
    Coach fares: 6.60
    Air fares: 115.17 (including rip off seat reservations at 8.40 for two people)
    Hotels: 81.30 (my share, including unhelpful outrageous card and currency fees, which jacked up the cost by 11.30!)
    General expenditure: 84.37 in GBP and 86 in EUR

    Total: 447.64 GBP and 119.30 in EUR

    Winners: 23 trains/trams and 3 planes
    Shack scores: 9
    Mileage: 868m50c (not including the Borders Railway moves, as no figures known for those yet)

    An expensive month in anyone's books, but worth it for the experiences had. I've learnt quite a bit as a result of the Irish trip, as well as having a refresher in stuff I already knew. No, nothing dodgy before you all start thinking it!

    October's going to be so much cheaper it's unreal. It's also been rather different to what I expected it to be like, whether that's a good or bad thing I don't yet know!
     
  17. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    October's review is a few days early, but all the train stuff is done for the month so let's get it posted!

    October 2015

    October started off badly, due to this whole norm thing, but thankfully that was kicked to the kerb eventually! Not entirely before the year's first WMDR though with Blindtraveller, which did yield 3 winners and a good social too on 12th October. On 17th October I had persuaded Lynz to let me crash in Ledbury the night before my London bash (18th and 19th October), only a few days before having got my train brain back! That was truely an amazing two day adventure which I didn't want to come home from, with 91 winners in total, 131 new sights and 35 shack scores. Which I only knew the numbers for after I got home, having left all my books at home! That sure put me in a good mood when I went back to work, until the Saturday when stress levels were high again, so on 26th October I treated myself to another bash! This time it was to Middle Earth to do the new curve at Bicester linking the Chiltern Main Line with Bicester Village. My first 168/3 was scored, as well as three shacks and 150926, not to mention new track so a very good day! Work was very stressful after that, so another bash to de-stress was already needed, and is due on 2nd November!

    Winners: 95
    Shack scores: 38
    New track: Bicester Village to Chiltern Main Line, as well as various micro-gricing in London
    Mileage: 1,004m67c (not including moves between Oxford Parkway and Haddenham and Thame Parkway, no figures yet known)

    Financial hit:

    Rail fares: 156.80
    Bus fares: 16.50
    Hotel ching: 33.86
    General spending: 80.02
    Total: 287.18

    That wasn't as bad as I thought, considering the amount of scores I got! I am of course eternally grateful to Lynz for allowing me to stay over on the 17th of October, as otherwise I'd have had considerable extra ching for a last minute hotel and probably wouldn't have done the London bash! That trip truely brought me back to me, so I will always remember that.
     
  18. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    Apart from the start, that sounds like a very successful month! Where are you heading too on the 2nd of November?
     
  19. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    A very successful month indeed!

    2nd November is a good question! I have several options but I suspect it'll be a choice between Bristol or Aylesbury. A WMDR is also a choice, as is an Oxfordshire Day Ranger. I suspect it'll boil down to what the gen is on Monday morning!
     
  20. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    How many Chiltern 165s do you need? If it's quite a few then Aylesbury might be worth it. I guess you will be hunting for your 3 required 150s if Bristol is chosen.
     
  21. Kite159

    Kite159 Established Member

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    The problem is locating those 150ss, which will probably require gem. After all no point being in Bristol when the 150 required is working out in St Ives
     
  22. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    It's not just the 165s I'm after, it's 3 shacks I'm after more than owt.

    I will of course be sourcing gen on Monday, depending what's going on will dictate where I go. Lord Kite has got me thinking of even more ideas though!
     
  23. 168lover

    168lover Member

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    There's a couple of 168/3s in service as of a few days ago
     
  24. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Indeed there are, I scored 168322 on Monday!
     
  25. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    Yep it's that time again! The penultimate round up of 2015 is here:

    Rolling Review November 2015

    This month was a fairly quiet one, starting off with a simple trip to Bath Spa on 2nd November. I'd received heads-up on 158960 and 150120 being score-able, so Bristol was calling. My first visit there in 3 and a bit years was preceded by my first visit for much longer to Filton Abbey Wood, which got me both units I could get today. Of course with Bath Spa being another long-term absentee from my moves book, that was more than 4.5 years ago, and the same fare as to Bristol it just made sense to see it again! Oh the memories this trip brought back...I also had another trip down Memory Lane with a trip to Bristol Parkway, even more memories!

    Then there was nothing until 20th November, as the next couple of Mondays were dedicated to catching up with stuff like bookwork, with the DVDs still being unwatched! The coach journey ended up being a nightmare, with the magic plastic being busted out at Preston, but the Newton East Connecting Line was finally covered the next morning and the trip was an excellent escape from Norm Land, in the excellent company of Lord BT from Motherwell onwards. The rest of the month I didn't get out on the rails again sadly, but it was still a good month all things considered.

    The next instalment will be the final one for 2015, but perhaps also the most interesting, as it will also feature bits and bobs like Move Of The Year, Trip of 2015 and other bits like that. Those will be challenging to choose! Some stats now for November:

    November Stats

    Winners: 5
    Shack scores: 0
    New track: Newton East Connecting Line
    Mileage: 870m45c

    Rail fares: £113.55
    Coach fares: £1.50
    Bus fares:November Stats

    Winners: 5
    Shack scores: 0
    New track: Newton East Connecting Line
    Mileage: 870m45c

    Rail fares: £113.55
    Coach fares: £1.50
    Bus fares: £10.30
    Hotel ching: Approximately £20.00
    General spending: £52.32

    Total: £197.67

    Not bad for what I got whatsoever, December will probably not be overly busy now, because of birthdays and Frothmas, but it'll still be a good end to the year. I'm happy that I cleared my mileage target for 2015, which was looking incredibly unlikely at various points! Bring on December and all its fun now!
     
  26. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    That trip was a huge tonic for me after a rather dark few weeks and will stick in the memory for quite some time. Without wanting to steel your thunder Decembers little adventure whilst not anything majorly new for iether of us will be I think a reminder and celebrations of quite simply why its great to be an enthusiast!
     
  27. Kite159

    Kite159 Established Member

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    Hopefully Christmas will soon be over and done with for another year :)
     
  28. Blindtraveler

    Blindtraveler Established Member

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    Are good, another scrooj! Join the club.
     
  29. Techniquest

    Techniquest Veteran Member

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    It was indeed a dark couple of weeks for you, you were fareing far worse than me! Still not sure how either of us survived all day after that super earky start mind!

    Agreed that this forthcoming trip will be a beast, I'm really looking forward to it. It will be just the thing both of us need to tide us through the Frothmas season!
     
  30. fishquinn

    fishquinn Established Member Quizmaster

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    Hopefully your Birthday bash will do you well (on both units/locos and shack scores!)
     
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