Friday 6 April 2012

Progressing to Preston [3]

from Station to Relaxation
Preston Station in 1882

Preston Station 130 years later

Today we follow fbb's journey from Preston station to the Whitburn House Hotel ...
... at the junction of Garstang Road and Blackpool Road. The journey planner offers an 8 minute walk to the centre of Preston, a number 23 bus and a 6 minute walk from Plungington Road to the Hotel. But fbb reckons he can do better; but only with significant effort. See "Progressing to Preston [2]" (read again) for more background.
So we need a map.
Clicking on this line produces an unhelpful response ...
... but eventually, after more clicking we get this ...
... on the Preston Bus web site ...
... in very small print. This leads to a "high frequency network diagram" of which the clip below is a relevant extract.
This implies that service 23, as advised by the journey planner, does not serve Garstang Road.  But the above is only a rough-and-ready diagram. Is there anything better?

Oh, yes there is! If you can find it!

We need to know that Lancashire Council also produces some excellent area maps. They are really hard to find but, once unearthed from the coal measures of computer created complications, they are actually really useful. Sadly ...
... but it's the best we've got ...
... and it shows that the 4, 4A, 4C, 40 and 41 might offer a better bet than the 23.

Let's see where the best slighting stop is.
And there it is, a shelter just visible as a bit of blue on the right-hand edge of this Google Streetview download; the hotel is far left, about 100 yards away. Ideal.

So, up the ramp from the station to the bus stop.
The flag clearly states "All buses go the the bus station" and a little extra research from the Lancashire map and guide shows that services are very frequent. 

Train arrived 1638, bus picks up at 1645 and arrives at the bus station at 1650.
Typical groovy wheels on the service 40

The service 40 leaves at 1700 and drops fbb and Mrs fbb at the Whitburn House hotel at 1705 approx 25 minutes after alighting from their train.

Compared with Transport Defunct, this removes the 8 minute walk to from Station to Preston Centre. It involves using the bus station where everything is based, ideal if you need extra advice. And it takes you to the right place, namely the stop outside the hotel, rather than the wrong stop on a neighbouring road out of sight of the desired destination.
No hotel in sight on Plungington Road
as advised by Transport Defunct

But it is only possible in these days of electronic information and remote call centres if the enquirer has a profound passion for getting it right and and equally profound passion that journey planners are just a likely to be wrong as to be right.
And talking of Passion ...

Today "The Preston Passion" is broadcast "live" (with pre-recorded bits!) on BBC1 from 12 noon. The presentation of the story of Jesus's crucifixion translated into a modern situation  is centred on Bays 1 to 40 of Preston bus station. [Tomorrow's blog looks at this iconic and often maligned building!]

Why did Jesus choose to die? The historic account records that he "set his face towards Jerusalem" and deliberately walked into controversy. He was ...
Arrested and beaten
Tried by an illegal kangaroo court of Jewish bigwigs who ...
Sent him Pontius Pilate the Roman Governor who ...
Sent him off the Herod the puppet king who ...
Sent him back to Pilate who ...
Washed his hands, released a terrorist instead and ...
Handed Jesus back to the kangaroo court who ...
Illegally crucified him!
The reason he chose to die encapsulates the core of the Christian Faith. Throughout the millenia of the Old Testament, the punishment for sin (Straying from God's Laws) was paid in shed blood namely the blood of the animal sacrifices in the temple; a bit revolting by today's standard but it did teach you a lesson. You paid the price by painfully giving up something personal, namely your next dinner or six!
"The wages of sin is death" is the uncompromising Biblical message and has been since the year dot.

So Jesus (The Messiah, God on Earth) pays the price for our Sin with His Blood to give His followers protection and salvation from the power of evil.

It's as simple and profound as that.
But dying on a cross, however cruel, however unjust, however meaningful, seems a rather pointless poignant act. On "Good" Friday, it was not all "Good": it was all over.
The Preston Passion : today, 1215
More from the bus station tomorrow
 Next Blog : due Holy Saturday April 7th 

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