UK rail trip – 2022
Day 45 – 17th May, 2022
Today I’m off to Scarborough. Despite the very loud music coming from Mathew Street below, I woke up before 07:00. I collected my stuff for the day and walked out and off to the station. On the way, I stopped off at Tesco for, you guessed it, a litre of orange juice. Tesco offered the best price for orange juice – around £1.50. Not a bad deal at all! I walked over to the station and found myself on platform 11 for the 07:54 Transpennine Express service to Newcastle on a class 802. Though, I was only going as far as York.
On the way to York, the train passes through Manchester Victoria. This is where the wires end from Liverpool. As the wires stop just a few hundred metres beyond the station, the changeover is done at the platform. It is seamless. A minute or so later, under diesel power, the train continues on. The more I travel on the Huddersfield Line, the more I like it. It’s probably because of the canal that parallels the line. I can imagine myself living in a narrowboat one day. They’re not very roomy, but I don’t need a lot of space. To me, it will be just another chapter in my travelling life.
It was almost an hour before my onward connection to Scarborough. The train was already in the staiton, but it wasn’t yet ready for boarding. So, I just sat on the platform and watched trains go by. About three quarters of an hour passed and it was time to board. The train was a locomotive hauled train, with Mk. 5 coaches and a class up front. This was my first time behind a class 68 and it sounded great! The interior of the coaches were not that bad, either.
I settled in for the 50 minute trip to Scarborough. The sound coming from the class 68 locomotive sounded fantastic! I was looking forward to visiting Scarborough, as I had never been there before. My Eurostar friend Justin recommended a fish and chip shop called Lifeboat Fish Bar. He stated it’s the best fish and chips in Scarborough.
Arriving Scarborough station, I consulted Google Maps as to where to go. Very straight forward. I walked through the shopping district. Before long, I was in to the tourist district, passing by a lot of tacky souvenier shops. I popped into one and picked up an iron-on patch. One day, I’m going to put them all on a scarf or blanket. Not far down the street is the fish and chip shop Justin told me about. Unfortunately, it was closed that day.
I wandered along the main road by the beach. A lot of fish and chip shops. Walked into a lot of them and found the lines quite long. Didn’t like the look of what was on offer, either. Eventually I came across Winking Willy’s Famous Fish & Chip Shop & Cafe. The queue wasn’t too bad and people were being served rather quickly. So, I decided to buy my lunch here. Fairly expensive, but it is a seaside resort town. I was served fairly quickly and then I walked off to the pier to eat there. Unfortunately, I found both the fish and chips to be quite substandard. Definitely not a chippy I’d visit again. I wandered around the pier for a while, taking some photos. The tide was currently out.
After wandering around the pier for a while, I walked back to the main street. I came across something that I didn’t expect to see – an old Cadilac with Texas number plates! Some people seem to like bring their cars across oceans to travel around in. This car would probably find some of the narrow country lanes challenging, though.
I continued my walk along the street and stepped on to the beach. A lot of people around today. With the sunny and warm weather, why not!
I soon decided that it was probably time to start heading back to Liverpool. I wanted to get back in time to grab dinner, before the city shut down for the night (apart from the noisy bars and clubs in Mathew Street, of course). I made my way to St. Nicholas Garden. This would provide a fairly quick way back to the station.
As I was winding my way up the path (I chose not to take the steps), I found a funicular railway called the Central Tramway. Scarborough used to have a number of funicular railways. I think is this the only surviving example.
I reached the top of the gardens and it was just another 15 minutes walk to the station.
As usual, I chose not to take the most direct way back to Liverpool. I decided that I’d catch the first train from Scarborough to Hull.
As I was on my way to Hull, I realised I’d made a bit of a miscalculation. Going via Hull would mean a much longer journey. I figured I’d probably not get back to Liverpool by almost 21:00 – almost five hours later. Still, I had a room booked so not much could go really wrong. If worst comes to worst, I could always grab something to eat at the Macca’s near the hostel.
I arrived at Hull. It was nearly another 40 minutes before my next connection. So, I popped into the nearby Tesco to buy, you guessed it, a litre bottle of orange juice. I’m certainly keeping the orange growers busy! I declined on getting something to eat at the moment, as I had a rather late lunch. I could last another few more hours yet.
I still had two more trains to catch, to get me back to Liverpool Lime Street. The Transpennine Express service I just boarded would take me to Leeds. As I result, I would be travelling by the River Humber again, under the Humber Bridge and the signal box at Selby. The weather was much better today than the other day! Unfortunately, I didn’t have the time to stop off, so I continued on to Leeds.
I arrived at Leeds. Just one more train to go. It was already 19:00, and I still had nearly two hours to go. My last train of the day was the same as my first: A Transpennine Express class 802. A little bit of symmetry. Leeds is a major station. So, despite all the people wanting to get on the train, a lot were also needing to get off. I decided not to go for a table seat, this time.
My last train of the day pulled out of the station and on to the Huddersfield Line. Not a bad way to end the day on such a scenic line! As it was mid-May, there was plenty of light around still. It wouldn’t be getting dark for at least another hour. This was golden hour, with the beautiful light reflecting off the canal and the rest of the landscape. The arrival into Manchester Victoria signalled the final stretch and back on to electric power. And, just before 21:00, the train pulled into Liverpool Lime Street.
I made my way back to the hostel. Upon arrival, my access card wasn’t working. I pressed the buzzer and was let in. I made my way to the lift and went up to my floor. The card didn’t unlock the door. So, I went back down to the lobby. They reset the card and I went back up again. Upon entering my room, I found that the bed had been made up. A little odd, since I was going to be here for another few days. I then found that some of my items were missing. I went back down to the lobby and made a complaint. They checked lost property and couldn’t find anything. Annoyed, I advised them that the bed had been made up again. It seems that the cleaning staff were unaware that I’d be staying for another few nights. I stated that I’d be expecting a full refund and compensation for the lost items. I went back upstairs, extremely annoyed. Irritated, I went to the bathroom. Low and behold, my items had been placed in there. What an odd place to put personal property! What if I really had checked out? If I had, there would be no way for them to trace who the items belonged to. I plugged in my charger. On a more positive note, at least the power point and personal light were working this time! As for finding somewhere else to stay, I’ll think about that tomorrow.
I went out to go find dinner. I remembered passing a pub on the way back from the station. I thought I may as well give it a go. Success! The pub was open AND it was still serving food – despite it being almost 22:00. I ordered a steak and a pint of cider. Tomorrow, I’m making good on a promise I made to Jasmine to visit Stratford-upon-Avon.