Tuesday, August 31, 2010

HS2 at Northolt

On Saturday I travelled Along the Central Line for a short while, from West Ruislip to Northolt. It was fine.

This picture is taken from the Eastbound platform at Northolt. It is possible to make out the over-bridge station building, which is also where the main A412 crosses the railway.

Running parallel to the Central Line is a little used single track railway line. It runs from Northolt Junction, has a triangular junction at Greenford and then continues on to the Paddington main lines just East of North Acton station. The line used to be double tracked - I think there is a passing loop somewhere just East of Greenford.

The current plans for High Speed 2 involve the entire stretch of parallel line being part of the route from Euston to Birmingham.

There are all sorts of contentious aspects to the HS2 plans - tunneling underneath grumpy people on the route from Euston and carving up parts of the Chiltern Hills, never mind burning truckloads of money that we don't have.

To give some idea of the work involved, never mind the impact on those living nearby, imagine what will be needed to upgrade this single bridge (and probably the entire underground station building) to allow two high speed (up to 400 kph / 250 mph) tracks to pass through the area highlighted. Simply mind boggling.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

As busy as a week day

There is a rugby league match this afternoon at Wembley Stadium. Kick off 2.30 pm.

Both teams are from Up North (it's Leeds Rhinos v Warrington Wolves), so travel is ideally suited to supporters who want to Park & Ride using the services of Chiltern Railways.

Nearly every station between Princes Risborough and South Ruislip has been buzzing with rugby supporters all morning.

Extra trains have been laid on, they are longer than usual, yet still packed.

It's a gloriously sunny day, so a great time should be had by all.

Obviously, by the end of the afternoon, some travelers will be happier than others.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Live life to the full

Last month I celebrated another birthday. My parents came to stay and we had a really pleasant evening. Early on the morning after the night before, my mother took a phone call to be told that her brother had died suddenly, at home.

Tonight I took a call from one of my best friends, with whom I go skiing every winter. She was ringing to let me know that she has been diagnosed with breast cancer and is to have a double mastectomy next Monday.

Meanwhile, at work, my team has just been given a warning that we could fail a compliance audit because some of our electronic file folders on our network drive do not quote destruction dates.

My 93 year old Grandmother, who has just lost one of her two children, still has an active social life and has a positive outlook.

My friend has, since her diagnosis, bought a BMW sports car and is insisting that we continue to plan for next Winter's ski holiday.

Please keep things in perspective, focus on what you can do in life and try not to worry about the things over which you have no control. You never know what is just around the corner.

Friday, August 06, 2010

Holiday Friday?

No more major stops for the train this morning, only three out of fourteen seats in use at my end of the carriage.

Just gone over the M25 - Very quiet.

Maybe when I get into town, it'll be quiet enough to get a Boris Bike?

Probably wishful thinking.