Tuesday, February 15, 2011

London Transport – 12-13 February 2011

The London transport system forms an integral part of life when living in London so this weekend we explored London with transport as the theme.
As we live on a joint Underground/Overground line, we decided to do a circuit of London on the Overground, incorporating the recently completed Overground extension. There are many well known names on the line, such as Whitechapel & Canada Water, with the line terminating at West Croydon.

From here the tramlink (installed 2000 and the only tram in London) took us to Wimbledon where the District Line brought us back to the Overground again. A side excursion (before re-boarding the Overground) took us to the Chelsea Physic Garden. This had a special winter opening for snowdrops. Rather than extensive areas of snowdrops, the snowdrop trail taught us all about snowdrops and the various varieties.

Sunday was the perfect day for indoor activities, so after a wonderful choral service at the historic Temple Church, we spent the afternoon at the London Transport Museum. They have a fascinating history of London transport with many vehicles on display, situated in the beautiful ex-flower market at Covent Garden. Currently, there is an exhibition on building the Overground extension, which was rather appropriate. Interestingly it incorporates the tunnel built under the Thames by Brunel – the first tunnel in the world to be built under a major city river and a bridge which took the largest crane in England to lift it into position.
Nearby the Museum, the Bafta awards were getting organised, but it was not a pleasant evening to be walking the red carpet nor to be a technician working on the outside broadcast trucks. It was amazing to see the miles and miles of cables snaking around the venue – all hidden from the camera view – all to beam it live to doting audiences around the world. Anyone would think it was important!

A railway ticket allows 2 for 1 entry into many attractions, so we used this to visit the Transport Museum and Chelsea Physic Gardens.

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