UK rail trip – 2022
Day 12 – 14th April, 2022
It was time to do some laundry. So, I checked for a laundromat and found one in East Didsbury. Just a tram ride away! Of course, I had to make my way back to the Metrolink station at Deansgate Castlefield – this meant climbing up all those stairs I climbed down last night, with suitcase in tow. Not the easiest of things to do.
I arrived in East Didsbury and found the laundromat. However, I did not have any change. I had to first withdraw cash and then have it changed. The machines did not accept cards to buy tokens – they only accepted one pound coins. I did this at the small convience store next door. An hour or so later, I was finished. Time to move on to York. I made a booking at the Safestay Hostel and caught the tram to Manchester Piccadilly.
The first available train wasn’t for a while, so I caught a Transpennine Express class 185 to Huddersfield, where I would change for another train on to Leeds and a further one to York.
Twice along the Huddersfield line in as many days. I can’t complain about that! I was a nice, sunny day and the scenery was wonderful.
I thought about spending a little time here, to visit the Head of Steam pub on the station. But I thought I’d wait for another time. I wanted to get along to York and spend a bit of time walking around. I walked up to the other end of the platform, where a waiting train would take me to Leeds.
The distance between Huddersfield and Leeds is about half the distance between Manchester Piccadilly and Huddersfield. However, it took almost as long due to it stopping at a few more stations. Even though I chose not to visit the pub, I still wasn’t in a big rush. One of the advantages of boarding a train at the start of its route is that you get the first choice of seats. I usually go for a set of facing sets with a table in the middle. I can then write down my trips in my train log or just chat to any people opposite. Travelling by train is such a civilised way to travel.
I had one more train to catch today. At Leeds, there was a late platform change. Thankfully it’s a fairly easy station to transfer at. Leed has 18 platforms, numbered 0 to 17. Yes, there’s a platform 0 which is right next to platform 1. It’s a recent addition to the station. This was to save from having to renumber the platforms, which would have caused confusion. I came in on platform 6 and would be leaving from platform 15.
My train from Leeds to York was much busier, as it originated in Liverpool and would be going onwards to Newcastle. This five coach train didn’t have all that many unreserved seats left. As I’m travelling on a BritRail Pass, I can hop on any train that I like. I could always reserve a seat if I wish, at zero additional cost, it would take away some of the spontaneity – even if this meant that I had to stand for a little while. Fortunately, on this occasion, I did find a seat and a window one at that.
Arriving in to York, I looked up the map to find the directions to my hostel. An easy ten minute walk – and no stairs! Well, ok, there were stairs at York station. But I already knew about those. Exit the station, turn right, walk a couple of hundred metres, then turn left at Micklegate Bar and then another 100 or so metres to the hostel. After checking into the hostel, I found my room. It seems that one of the hostel guests had decided to monopolise much of the space under the bunks. This left me no space under my assigned bunk. After speaking to the receptionist, my available cage was relocated so I could actually used it. I suspect the guest was a worker on a long term stay, for which the hostel has a rule against anyhow. Disgruntled, I went out and explored.
After taking some photos around the city wall, I walked up to York Minster and took several more photos.
Before long, I decided to go hunting for something to eat. I found a pub right near Micklegate Bar called the Windmill Inn and ate a very tasty lasagne. After dinner, I went back to the station and watched some trains.
Tomorrow evening, I’m taking the Night Riviera back to Penzance.