Monday, 16 May 2016

Transforming Troglodyte Travel (3)

Aldwych to St Pancras
The arc of Aldwych was laid out in the early years of the 20th century. Within the arc was the Indian High Commission and Australia House with the huge Bush House in between.
The main portico dominates the view as you travel down Southampton Row ...
... and confuses foreign visitors who have trouble with the weird English spelling as they try to pronounce BVSH!
The building was commissioned, designed and originally owned by American individuals and companies. Irving T. Bush gained approval for his plans for the building in 1919, which was planned as a major new trade centre and designed by American architect Harvey Wiley Corbett.

It was, until 2012, the headquarters of the World Service of the BBC. As we turn left here, we see the exit road for the A301 Strand Tunnel ...
... built on the site of Aldwych underground tram station. The original tram ramp is outside Holborn Station ...
... but now providing access for Crossrail work.
Our No. 59 bus now takes us into London's hotel-land with much of the real estate owned by the Duke of Bedford; hence Russell Square after the family surname and various Tavistocks.

The subsidiary titles of the Duke of Bedford, all in the Peerage of England, are Marquess of Tavistock (created 1694), Earl of Bedford (1550), Baron Russell, of Cheneys (1539), Baron Russell of Thornhaugh in the County of Northampton (1603), and Baron Howland, of Streatham in the County of Surrey (1695) (and possibly the Barony of Bedford, which was merged into it in 1138, 1366 or 1414).

The magnificent Russell Hotel is one of the grandest.
Now that is what you might call a staircase!
At about £200 per night, it is a bit beyond even fbb's budget! £43 was shelled out for a one night stay in central Sheffield - without breakfast.

Back to the 59.

It is a bit of a crawl northbound to Euston Station but Borismasters now proliferate in central London ...
... with this southbound queue entirely filled with the bulbous monstrosities beauties. And there are more at Euston.
They're taking over! But still some extra delights to espy. St Pancras Parish Church is another magnificent pile on the corner of Euston Road ...
... followed by Camden Borough Fire Station, almost country town in its design.
Then fbb spotted an intriguing notice:-
Why miss out the "mer" in Hammersmith? There's plenty of space. Perhaps the signwriter ran out of letters? But soon we pass the architecturally uninspiring British Library and alight at the exceedingly inspiring St Pancras ...
... whose Gothic pinnacles peep above the red-brick slab of the library entrance. The building can be useful, however. Toilets are near the entrance, and free.

Waterloo to St Pancras by underground takes about 30 minutes from train doors to barriers. fbb's leisurely and enjoyable bus journey extended that to 43 minutes. There is still the excessive trek to get to the trains ...
... (correct set of barriers this time) but with nowhere to sit. The folk on the left are perched uncomfortably on a pole to prevent trolleys etc. from smashing the glass. The perch is very uncomfortable.

Of course there is a financial downside to using the bus. Unless you are an old codger like fbb, you have to pay whilst the underground fare is included in your through rail ticket. But maybe it's a fair price to pay for a more pleasant journey.
Hyacinthoides non-scripta
When fbb was a little sprog he was on Holiday with family at Colyton. Mum saw a sign to Blackberry Castle and arranged for Dad to drive the family there. There was no sign of a castle, just a few mounds of earth in a bit of woodland. It was later and more correctly known as Blackbury Camp.
This hillfort in Devon was built during the 4th century BC. It was used by an Iron Age tribal people, probably for several hundred years. Blackbury Camp had impressive ramparts, and the single entrance was protected by a large triangular earthwork or ‘barbican’. Now surrounded by woodland, the hillfort is a popular spot for picnics.

At this time of year it has another claim to fame; so fbb and Mrs paid a visit over the weekend.
The woods are absolutely carpeted with these delightful blooms.
One of the joys of living at Seaton. Sadly, there is no bus to Blackbury Camp.
 Next bus blog : Tuesday 17th May 

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