Monday 30 November 2020

Where Goes With Logos? Who Knows? (1)

 The Metropolitan Railway's Aspirations?

It started quite small then growed and growed. As well as its lines in London ...
... including the Northern City line and the East London line it developed the routes coloured purple on today's Underground map ...
... known as their "Extension".

It extensioned way into deepest rural Buckinghamshire.
The line to Verney Junction was a country branch in every way ...
... offering connections with the Oxford to Cambridge line (GREEN) and its branch to Brackley and Banbury and, of course, southbound to Aylesbury and the rest of the "Met".
But even Verney Junction had aspirations of the Met's importance.
It was somewhat over the top to refer to the route to Oxford as a "branch" of the Metropolitan!

But the line from Quainton Road to Brill was about the daftest outpost of what became the London Underground network. It ran from nowhere very much (Quainton Road) to nowhere at all (Brill).
A typical "station" was Wood Siding ...
... and a typical train was ...
... a fine example of what might be termed the "basic railway"! The terminus at Brill was remarkable ...
... for its diminutive size.

The railway reached the little town of Brill in March 1872 and for the next 20 years 2 mixed trains ran each day. In 1899, the railway was taken over by the Metropolitan Railway and the service increased to 4 trains each day. The original platform was low and had to be raised when the Met. introduced the carriage seen in the picture. Although only 6 miles from Quainton Road, the journey took about 35 minutes due to the poor quality of everything related to the railway. Taken over by LT in July 1933, the line had no future and was closed in December 1935.

The station's location was equally, well, rural. As usual the route of the line remains in undergrowth as seen on this Google aerial view ...
... and the road that led from Brill village to the station is called ...
... Train Hill, although that name does not appear on any signboard. Pity.

This is what the two extremities would look like were they still part of the working London Underground.
As well a its obscure extremities, the Met had grander aspirations, both in its own business and in its link with the Great Central Railway.

We shall explore more tomorrow.

Imagine meanwhile, if you can, what things would be like in rural Buckinghamshire if you could catch a train of "S" stock from Baker Street to Wood Siding today!
Maybe not! But it would have been an opportunity for an even grander Metro-Land, had it ever been allowed.

Illuminations Illuminated.
The tree. morphing into a cross and back is joined by a real plastic tree covered in rather too many blue LEDs.
As a further statement as to what we should be celebrating at  CHRIST  mas , the fbbs have switched the cross to "always on". Three of the six properties in the fbb mansions block now have lights on display.

Preservation Appeal? Really?
The guy who has started the petition writes:-
fbb signed the petition yesterday afternoon.

Sadly, after his signature was added to the list he has been asked FOUR times to send money.

Scam or not, it did not endear fbb to the petition and he has removed any on-line contact.


Farewell To An Old Friend

A railway network has bid a final farewell to its fleet of Pacer trains after more than three decades of service.

The outdated carriage made its final Northern journey from Kirkby to Manchester Victoria on Friday.

It marked the end of more than 35 years of service – clocking 300 million miles – in the north of England.

fbb always liked the Pacers. They were fun to ride, although maybe a bit bumpy for regular users; they have the best window view of any commuter train, even better for those that retained low-back seats. But they were always cold and draughty OR steamingly over-heated, the latter usually on hot summer days!

Fortunately several have been preserved.

Talking Of Old Friends

Many thanks for those who sent condolences to fbb after the passing of his sister. Her death was not unexpected but it still leaves an emotional gap after knowing her for 73 years. Prayers are important, too, for son Matthew, who has the job of handling the seemingly endless "paperwork" as well as the loss of his mother.

fbb will be leading the service at the Isle of Wight Crematorium. Date and time not yet fixed.

It will be quite hard to do, but far better than relying on "the duty minister". Jane was only an occasional church-goer.

 Next Lovely Logo blog : Tuesday 1st December 

Sunday 29 November 2020

In Memoriam (2)



Today's service is ON-LINE.
A link can be obtained via the Church YouTube channel
(here) which will (should?) take you direct to the service.
The link only becomes live at about 1015 when they switch on!

Sister Jane

Picture of Jane with sons Mark and Matthew
Happier Times!

fbb's sister died on Friday morning in the care of St Mary's Hospital, Newport, Isle of Wight. She was 73, living in a care home, and had suffered from repeated bouts of a chest infection (NOT Covid 19) over the last few years. Her passing was peaceful and she had asked to see the Hospital Chaplain earlier in the day. 
May she have taken that step of faith.

Out of respect for Jane, for those who cared for her, for her two sons Matthew (now 43) and Mark (now 46), and for personal feelings, blogging will be suspended for today.

Normal service will be resumed tomorrow.

 Next Lovely Logo blog : Monday 30th November 

Saturday 28 November 2020

In Memoriam (1)

 Sister Jane

fbb's sister died yesterday morning in the care of St Mary's Hospital, Newport, Isle of Wight. She was 73, living in a care home, and had suffered from repeated bouts of a chest infection (NOT Covid 19) over the last few years. Her passing was peaceful and she had asked to see the Hospital Chaplain earlier in the day. 
May she have taken that step of faith.

Out of respect for Jane, for those who cared for her, for her two sons Matthew and Mark, and for personal feelings, blogging will be suspended for today and tomorrow.

The Church link will be posted for tomorrow's service, a usual.

Normal service will be resumed on Monday.

The picture was taken approx 64 years ago outside St Matthew's Church, Northampton at a family wedding.

 Church link blog : Sunday 29th November 

Friday 27 November 2020

Every Picture Tells A Story (2)

 Paddington Pedestrian Procedure

fbb did write that the best way from Paddington to the Central line was a short signposted walk to Lancaster Gate station. Even a medium knowledge of London would cause an interchange passenger to spurn the Circle/District line and a change at Notting Hill Gate for the short walk.

But, yet again, your error beset blogger was wrong! The walk is short but is NOT signposted - but, should energy levels be low, you could catch a bus. Until very recently, the best option was as follows.

Leave the circulating area at the buffer stop end of the platforms and make you way to the Lawn. This area is about the best low maintenance greensward imaginable.
Not a single solitary blade of grass needs excision by a mower - by far the best lawn you could have!

This part of Paddington is said to derive its name from having been the stationmaster's garden in the period of the temporary station at the Bishop's Road Bridge between 1837 and 1850. The area was lost when Brunel built the present terminus between the great train shed and the back of the Great Western Royal Hotel. Brunel excavated it out and laid tracks up to the back of the hotel. A simple ridge-and-furrow Paxton roof was built above and iron galleries led from the back of the hotel to the departure and arrival platforms.
Anyway ...

Nip up the escalators ...
... and in through the back door of the Hilton Hotel.
Then out through the front door of the Hilton Hotel ...
... waving cheerfully and confidently at the poshly dressed personage with the proper topper as you pass by. Nip smartly across the road to the Metropolitan Railway station ...
... which, as its name suggests, is where you could catch a Circle or a District line train but NOT a Metropolitan line train.

Turn right and amble past the stop for bus 46 ...
... which would take you all the way to Lancaster Gate ...
... a distance of one whole stop! Like the bus, you turn left along Westbourne Terrace ...
... walking to the end thereof whilst enjoying the lavish arboriculture en route. Fork slightly right at the next junction; walk past the terminus of the aforementioned 46 ...
... left at the main road and, Robert is your father's brother!
Clever and up to date people will know that the Eastbourne Terrace exit from Paddington is now exit-able which may be a less embarrassing trajectory than facing the supercilious sneer of Hilton's over-dressed minions.

But the walk route is short, it is quick and it is easy - once you know!

Encouragement for Coaching?
Or maybe wishful thinking?
The article in the Advert magazine Bus and Coack Weeklu doesn't say how much.
But it will be "a lot"!

East Yorkshire is full of optimism for 2021. The company has just published is holidays and toures brochure.
Bext pf luck with that, folks!

Preservation News
Good news is that one of the to car ex underground trains, that have struggled to provide a two-train service over that last year or so, is to be preserved.
It is a long time since the Island Line could run four car trains as shown above. Effectively they have just two serviceable two car units meaning 100% availability is necessary.

Fat Chance.

Regularly the line is reduced to an hourly service of just one working train. Roll on the 484s.

Our Scottish column!
The re-fettled Glasgow Queen Street station is pretty much in full operation. It looks good from the outside and equally good inside.

Heaps better than its immediate predecessor.
One twitterer was impressed with the way a few bots of the old have been incorporated into the new. "They have kept the Victorian columns," he enthused. Probably a good idea - the roof would fall down if they weren't there.

But instead of encasing them in concrete or some inflammable (?) cladding, the columns have been retained as was and painted to match the new color scheme.
There is a line of them where newer building abuts the old arched overall roof.

Roger Ford's Kettle?
Modern Railways columns Mr Ford has been known to refer to steam engines as "kettles".

Switzerland has no indigenous sources of coal. But it has lots of mountains, lots of rushing water and thus lots of hydro-electricity.

So Swiss Railways had a cunning plan. When supplies of coal were lacking, particularly after the 2nd World War, they decided to create their own kettle.
Put a pantograph on the roof of the cab, use the electric to heat the water and you get about 20 minutes of shunting time until you need to get back under the wires.

Farewell To An Old Friend?
First West Of England says farewell to its last bendibus as it trundles away for scrap. One has even been donated to the Isle of Wight Bus Museum (WHY?).

It makes fbb feel VERY old.

Eurostar As Well
The cross channel operator is really struggling. No Government subsidies are provided and passengers are a rarity.
They've got a point.

fbb's new lap top arrived yesterday.

He expects to get it working by some date in the new year.

2025. Aaaaaargh! More tomorrow.

 Next Lovely Logo blog : Saturday 28th November