Friday, 7 November 2014

2014 - Day Out 9: London

Date: Friday 7 November 2014

It is time for our annual weekend away in London, this year we will see The Lord Mayor Show followed by a musical on the evening and the Remembrance Day Parade at Whitehall.

I have to make a visit to the town before meeting Mr UKBuses to get some last minute things for the weekend, so even before the weekend starts I am already off the plan. I text Mr UKBuses to let him know and to meet me at Stourbridge Interchange. After my last minute shopping is done, I wait at the stand for Mr UKBuses to turn up on his service 276 from Norton and realise that it is running late. I do get a phone call off him asking me where I was, which I reply that I am waiting at the stand and that you will be late arriving. He then informs me that he is waiting at the railway station as he had a lift (so Mr UKBuses is already off the plan too!), I make my way towards the railway station and meet up with Mr UKBuses and we board the Stourbridge Shuttle and make our way to Stourbridge Junction, where we alight and don't have to wait very long before we catch our London Midland train to Birmingham Snow Hill at 17:50.

Bottle Of Tilting Ale
After passing through Cradley Heath, where redevelopment works are well under way, and Rowley Regis we arrive at Birmingham Snow Hill, where we alight and have a bit of time to get some food and drink before we have to board our train to London, we decide to go to J D Wetherspoons "The Briar Rose" and sample a couple of pints of Doombar, but after a few circuits of the pub, there are no available tables so we have to leave the food. After our rest and refreshments, we make our way to Birmingham New Street, with me having some "fresh air" before we enter the station. Before we board our train, we purchase some sandwiches and crisps to eat on our journey. We board our Virgin Train which will depart from Birmingham New Street at 19:30, or so we thought, due to a trespasser on the line, we have to wait at Birmingham New Street and at 19:55 we finally depart Birmingham New Street and we our on our way to London Euston having some Tilting Ale, see picture left, along the way.

Travelodge Docklands Hotel
The driver of the train makes up time and after passing through Coventry and Rugby, we finally arrive at London Euston at 21:15. The first port of call is outside for some "fresh air", after the break is over we head back into the station and with our OysterCards at hand, we make our way underground and onto the Northern Line to Bank. Arrival at Bank and we are still underground and after a brisk walk through the underground alleyways we board the DLR (still underground) and make our way to the final destination. A few minutes after leaving Bank, we make our way back into normal level tracks and back outside and arrive at our destination and base for the weekend, East India at 21:58. We have a few minutes walk before we arrive at Travelodge Docklands hotel, see picture right, where after checking in and dropping the stuff off at our rooms (I'm on the ground floor again whilst Mr UKBuses has to climb stairs), we meet back up in the hotel bar where we have a couple of pints (and as always here I have Budweiser as it is on draught) before retiring for the night.

A good start to the weekend, even though we haven't done any sightseeing today, it means we can wake up in London and make an early start tomorrow morning.

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