43074's London Trip 02/09/2013

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43074

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I arrived at Leicester station on the morning of the 2nd September, bound for London, armed with my 16-25 Railcard. I purchased 3 tickets I would require for the day: Anytime Return Leicester to Nuneaton, Off Peak Return Nuneaton to London Euston and Zones 1 - 6 Day Travelcard, which all told came to a sum total of £47.65 - much better value than the £101.60 I would have otherwise had to cough up to travel with East Midlands Trains at the same time.

With 20 minutes to wait before the departure of my train, I observed 222003, 222023 and 66011 doing various movements through Leicester before I boarded 170103 to form the 08:16 Leicester to Birmingham New Street, which I was to take to Nuneaton. An uneventful trip here, I had a forward facing seat by the window so I was happy! (Although I was a tad nervous about the +5 connection I had to make at Nuneaton, because we were losing minutes ever so gradually.)

Anyway, worries aside, I rushed over the footbridge at Nuneaton from Platform 6 to Platform 4 to await the arrival of the Virgin Train for the trip to London Euston. My Pendolino arrived at 08:46 formed of 390039, approximately 1 minute down. Passing Rugby I noted a DRS 57 in the South facing bay, a DRS 66 coming off the Northampton line and a few Motorail vans. I must add that I haven't mastered the art of number spotting at 125mph yet, and I have no intention to either.

I was pleasantly surprised at the number of passengers (Sorry Mr Branson - I mean customers), alighting at Watford Junction. It begs the question: Why don't Virgin stop here more often? Anyway, the journey to London Euston was uneventful until I saw 90021 on the 'Beds' ECS from London Euston and 67019, 92019, 86407 and 86213 at Wembley.

On arrival at Euston, I was to stick rigidly to my plan and made my way to Euston Square Underground Station, to make the short hop to Baker Street on (what turned out to be) a Metropolitan Line train. I changed at Baker Street for the Bakerloo Line to make the two stop hop to Marylebone. At Marylebone I saw 67017 and 67013 on the 10:15 and 10:45 Chiltern Mainline services to Birmingham respectively, 172101 (my first Chiltern '172'), 165005/028/029, 168005/108 at Marylebone station and I boarded 165011 for the 10:25 London Marylebone to High Wycombe service which I took to South Ruislip (can you see where this is going yet?). An LUL infrastructure unit passed through on the Central Line platforms, but I didn't bother taking a photograph because it wasn't a particularly good vantage point.



After a brief pause at South Ruislip, 165027 arrived ECS from Wembley Depot to take myself (and two others) to Paddington. I was surprised at a number of things here: 1. The track was still made up of jointed rail, 2. The Chiltern train had a guard and 3. I wasn't the only person travelling on the train. Passing Old Oak Common, I saw HeX 332004 and FGW shunter 08836. Arriving at Paddington a few minutes early, I bought a brownie and a hot chocolate from Cafe Nero and made my way to the Station Reception to sign in so I could do a bit of photography undisturbed. At Paddington I saw 43015/098/124/126/127/141/143/154/155/176, 166218. 180108 & 332007. Following my brief rendez-vous with Brunel's masterpiece, I made my way down to the Circle/District Line platforms to await the tube to West Brompton.


My ''District Line train to Wimbledon'' arrived slightly late, and was not too crowded, when I boarded at Paddington. Another uneventful trip ensued and I arrived in time to make an unplanned +5 connection to Clapham Junction on London Overground, with 378218 doing the honours. I ''perched'' for my two stop hop to Clapham Junction, where as far as I know, we arrived on time. I saw lots of South West Trains 158s, 444s, 450s, 455s and 458s and Southern 377s, 442s, 455s and 456s plus a few London Overground 378s. I would reproduce my list here, but it would make for a (more) tedious read. I have to admit photography is my thing, and I did start to get slightly bored at Clapham Junction after about half an hour, because there wasn't too much variety. Clapham Junction is fantastic if numbers are your sort of thing.



My next stop was London Victoria, to which I travelled on 377121 which just happened to be the next departure from the platform I was on. From here ensued a quick detour to Covent Garden for a snack at the Transport Museum cafe, and to get some extra mileage in. I can recommend the chocolate muffins on sale at the Transport Museum cafe. Following this short break, I made my way back to Charing Cross, on realising there were direct services between Charing Cross and London Bridge, my next destination. 465170 was my traction for this journey. I spent the best part of half an hour at London Bridge - I like being able to see a lot in a little amount of time - and there were plenty of Southeastern 375, 376, 465 and 466 units and Southern 171, 377 and 455 units to keep me occupied.



Having finished my quick photography session at London Bridge, I moved on to Canada Water on the Jubilee Line followed by a short trip on 378147 to Rotherhithe. I took a break at Rotherhithe from the travelling and had a quick look inside the Brunel Exhibition, where there are a number of interesting artefacts relating to the opening of the Thames Tunnel and various drawings etc. relating to it. The exhibition is housed in an engine house used for the construction of the tunnel itself.

Following my brief break, I ventured back to Rotherhithe and joined 378204 for the trip to Shadwell, where I changed for the DLR. By this time, 17:00 in the afternoon, the DLR was packed but I still made sure I had a view from the rear of a car bound for Poplar. Plenty of c2c units were observed as may be expected, but I didn't get any decent pics because of the frequency of the DLR. A cross platform interchange at Poplar saw me wait approximately a minute for a car to Stratford, which was also packed to the rafters. I alighted at Stratford and headed for the Greater Anglia platforms to do some more photographing of GA 315, 321 and 360 units, few of which I have seen. Unfortunately the sun was in the wrong place for any decent pictures, so I gave up and headed back to Liverpool Street on 321433. I was pleasantly surprised by the Greater Anglia makeover - their trains are not as bad as the 'Anti Greater Anglia' people seem to think.

At Liverpool Street I made a quick dash for the Metropolitan Line to Euston Square and it was nice to be able to enjoy the luxuary of an air conditioned tube train. I like the S-stock trains, because there is a good impression of space, but comfort is lacking - I couldn't do Aldgate to Amersham on one. I arrived at Euston in good time for my train back to Nuneaton, 390123 on the 19:07 Virgin service to Liverpool Lime Street. 86632 and 86637 were noted on containers and 92042 and 90020 were new at Wembley Yard. I had plenty of time to make a +20 connection at Nuneaton for the 20:22 departure back to Leicester.

More pictures can be found at the website in my signature.
Thanks for reading. :D
 
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D841 Roebuck

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That sounds like it was a good day out - a bit of track bashing, some time for observation and photos, a couple of breaks to chill out and a variety of rolling stock sampled.

I've not been to London for 3 years, but a similar sort of day would appeal - perhaps with a Rochdale-Manchester-Birmingham-Marylebone outward journey and a return on Grand Central via Halifax. (Goes away to ponder Real Time Trains and PSUL websites...)
 

43074

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Very nice report (and photos) of a good day out.

Thank You :D

That sounds like it was a good day out - a bit of track bashing, some time for observation and photos, a couple of breaks to chill out and a variety of rolling stock sampled.

It was a very good day out - I do try to plan my trips so I get a bit of everything (track, trains and photography) and it's even better when it all goes to plan!

I must add the reason for going via the WCML was to save money, although I hadn't done the WCML South of Watford Jn before, so it was a win-win situation either way!
 
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anthony263

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Excellent photos and a nice report. Certainly I enjoyed my trip from Paddington to South Ruislip on the chiltern service.
 

Welshman

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Excellent photographs. Thank you.

And also a smart way to get to London using the Virgin Railcard concession!
 

43074

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The FCC 377 shots are excellent ! ...

Thanks :D

Excellent photos and a nice report. Certainly I enjoyed my trip from Paddington to South Ruislip on the chiltern service.

Thank you for your kind comments. I can only assume there is only one kind of person who uses the South Ruislip to Padd service, judging by the conductor asking me whether I was ''just there for the ride.'' My carriage was more empty between Marylebone and Ruislip than it was for the run to Paddington.

Excellent photographs. Thank you.

And also a smart way to get to London using the Virgin Railcard concession!

I had originally planned to go to London before I turned 16, but with the YP discount I could arrive in London earlier having done more mileage and used more traction for more than half the price of the EMT fare. And if anything went wrong before the return working from London Euston, e.g. signal/train failure, person hit by train etc then hopefully ticket acceptance would be in place to allow me to travel direct to Leicester from St Pancras, so I had nothing to lose anyway!
 
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