A Grim North

Musings from a northerner living in the deep south…

Posts Tagged ‘roads’

They think you should stay on the bus

Posted by Alan on November 1, 2010

Bus stop and railings

Stay behind the railings!

 

Last weekend I took the bus shopping rather than cycling. Apart from the pangs of frustration at running to someone else’s timetable, something I spotted was this ‘intervention’.  In London buses generally have doors in the middle to let people off – so why, oh why, would you build railings roughly where the ‘out door’ would be (remember the bus will stop with the front bumper pretty much next to the stop ‘flag’).

And are railings really necessary anyway? They look ugly and do they actually do anything?

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Posted in Transport Rant | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Norfolk Holiday – Day 2 – Holt, Cromer

Posted by Alan on September 22, 2010

Breakfast in the B&B at a very leisurely 10 to 9. Mmm full breakfast. At 1030 we boarded the steam train to Holt around 5 miles around the coast from Sheringham. Apparently there was a lot of space in the 1950s for things like bikes!


Bike space on the steam train

Bike space on the steam train


The current Holt station is on the edge of town – about 1.25 miles (2km) so only a short hop by bike. We found ourselves a lovely brew in a cafe called Byfords. Pretty damn good and with an excellent deli on the site – here I picked up the local “Yetman’s stout” to try sometime. Brew supped, we headed back out on the main road past Holt station and picked up the sustran’s regional route 30. This took us through the countryside – mostly fields – along quiet single track roads all the way to Cromer.

Ruth, cycling through Gresham

Ruth, cycling through Gresham


The Norfolk countryside around here is actually rather undulating – not quite the flat plain we had imagined! Still, I’d be very surprised if we topped 200″ (60m) above sea level all day.

Cromer is a busy little town. On our visit it was hosting some steam cars – a little bit strange – chuffing slowly along the promenade and with the occasional loud bang. Picking up some provisions in the Morrisons (complete with bike stands) we grabbed some chips on the sea front (as one must) before going for a half in the Dolphin. Woodforde’s wherry was very tasty!


Cromer from the pier

Cromer from the pier


The final leg of our cycling adventure took us out of Cromer onto the A149 – the coastal road – over the steep cliffs above towards the north west. But after a further 2.14 miles (3.4km) spotting a sign for West Runton station we decided to give up and take the train back to Sherringham (just 1 stop and £1.25 each!). Back in Sheringham and it was time for tea. Tonight, The Lobster was the venue. Sadly, disappointing. In 5 words: overcooked food and flat beer. Shame, it was a promising pub from the outside. So, back to the Windham arms for a good beer!


Wolf: howling' good beer

Wolf: howling' good beer

And with that off to bed!

Trip Miles Kilometres
Holt Station – Holt 1.25mi 2km
Holt – Holt Station 1.25mi 2km
Holt Station – Cromer via sustrans RCN 30 11.14mi 17.82km
Cromer – West Runton via coast road (A149) 2.14mi 3.42km
Total: 15.78mi 25.25km

Summary

Date: 08/09/2010

Posted in 2010 North Norfolk Holiday, Cycling | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Cafe Culture on the North Circular

Posted by Alan on September 8, 2010

Ace Cafe, London

Ace Cafe, London

I’ve been intrigued by the Ace Cafe since I saw it on some London documentary TV show. Probably ‘Suggs survivors’ or something like that.  It’s plonked on the north bank of the North Circular (A406 to true petrolheads) in Stonebridge and sandwiched between two industrial estates.  Every time we head back to Manchester we pass on the train and have many a time planned to get down there.

Last Sunday we had Ruth’s family round and her dad, Ian, is into trial bikes so we figured it would be a good trip.  Even in my current state of ‘man-flu’d up pathetic uselessness. So we set off around the North Circular towards the West. I forgot how awful London traffic can be – very glad that I was not driving!

Cup of tea

Tea! - Solves all known problems...

It is after all, a cafe.  Standard fayre of tea/coffee/breakfasts etc were seen.  Tea was enjoyed outside watching a series of bikers come and go.

Inside the Ace Cafe

Inside the Ace Cafe

As we left they were gearing up for a car meet. Looked like a gathering of chav-mobiles to me (sorry – I don’t know any better!) so we cleared off out of the way.  Wouldn’t mind going back sometime to grab some food and to see a (classic) meet in context.

Posted in Culture, Food and Drink, Transport Rant | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »