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  • stevecowles

More public transport woes

A couple of days ago I needed to visit Penrith for a meeting, by road this would take about an hour. By train, well it is on the main West Coast line so it can't be that hard, can it?

The first train of the day leaves at 06:30, no buses that early in the morning so a 30-minute walk to the station. The train should go to Carlisle but what is this, it stated Maryport which is less than half the journey. Apparently engineering works are overrunning so actually not Norther Rail's fault for a change. It will be a slow bus for half the journey and I will miss my connection.

We trundle along at a snail's pace as par as Workington, the next town and there we stop, another train is blocking the track so we wait for about 20 minutes. Great, I'm considering calling the meeting off at this point.

Eventually, the train starts again and we head to Maryport where we are told that we will continue to Carlisle as the work is finished so that is a bit better. The conductor found me an alternative connection, in fairness she was very helpful to everyone and a jewel in Northern Rail's somewhat battered crown.

There is a long wait for the connection so I dash to Greggs for coffee and emergency bacon. The train to Penrith is on time and all is good, another 30 walk at the far end of the journey and I'm there. A mere 4 hours and 50 minutes.

The return journey doesn't offer a train from Penrith at my departure time so a bus it is, an hour and 10 minutes to Carlisle for the train home followed by a taxi as it would have been an hour to wait for a bus. Return journey time, over three and a half hours and that is with no delays. Average speed compared to the car journey? A death defying 12mph.

Why do more people not use public transport, because outside of cities it is shit, simple as that.

Why am I writing this now? I'm off work tomorrow so was going to pop into town for a few beers, did the bus come? no. Did the next bus come? no. Is there another one due in the next 2 hours? no. SHIT I tell you.

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