Main purpose: work trip for an EastNet Procurement meeting at ULCC; if time permits, visit O'Hanlons brewpub before it's sold.
Arriving at the station at 07:50, there was a shortish queue for tickets. As at that point I was expecting an all-day meeting, I bought a simple day Return ticket without Tube travel. In retrospect I should have gotten unlimited Zone 1+2 Tube travel too.
I caught the 08:17 train: 2 stops to Kings Cross, arriving on time around 09:13. I forgot about the taxi rank there making it awkward to walk directly out south-westwards to Euston Road. The quick route is to go straight out of the station southwards and if necessary a little eastwards to Euston Road and then turn westwards.
I walked past St Pancras station and then turned south down Judd Street.
|[An aside: see the excellent Web site with pics of the interior of George Gilbert Scott's Midland Grand Hotel at St Pancras. It's due to be refurbished as part of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link. I went inside on a later trip.]|
My meeting was on Guildford Street at 10:00 and was over about 13:45.
|[For comparison, the indoor section is a little larger than the St Radegund.]|
I followed Farringdon Road, the course of the Fleet river, down to near Farringdon station. This part of the trip was inspired by the Web pages of the Radio 4 series Mapping the Town by Julian Richards (in Series 1 Episode 4). I tried to find the Jerusalem Tavern in Britton Street, north-east of the station, but failed, taking the wrong turn down Cowcross Street, then along Charterhouse Steet and back to the station.
I used the ticket machine to get a Travelcard for £3.90. For future reference I had to select a button for One-Day One-Adult Travelcard and another button for Zones 1+2. A third button selected payment by cash, I think.
After about a 7-minute wait I took a Thameslink train to Blackfriars, passing through a long tunnel through Snow Hill,
|[See Railtrack - Thameslink 2000].|
Blackfriars is one of the few stations in central London I've seen without ticket barriers. At the exit I used a bank ATM as I did my previous time here. It still seems slightly innovative to have them in stations - they're not yet standard features except for the largest stations. The exit corridor has prints of early designs for the Blackfriars Bridge.
I walked along the north bank of the Thames, here known as St Paul's Walk.
It's much narrower than the opposite side but a lovely, peaceful setting, though
the Upper Thames Street carriageway thunders a short distance away.
There are trellises and benches all along the path.
Passing underneath the rapidly-progressing Millennium Bridge, I got a different angle on the Bankside rebuilding works.
I tried to find the Art of Star Wars exhibition in the Barbican Art Gallery. By the entrance there was a full-size X-wing fighter model. There were plenty of signs for other aspects of the Centre but none for the Gallery.
|[Afterwards I found from the Web site that it's on "level 3".]|
I returned to Barbican station and caught a train to Kings Cross at 16:25, catching the 16:45 train with 2 stops to Cambridge.
In the morning the train gained 4 carriages at Royston and the reverse happened on the return. Presumably this saves money on the onward journey to Kings Lynn.