Decided to take the train today parking at the my favourite station with free park and ride. The train to Malvern Link went direct. I wasn’t sure of the local bus services since the information seems quite sketchy on the web. Eventually a bus came along which took me through Great Malvern right up to the British Camp. Here I followed in the footsteps of the British chief Caractacus and composer Edward Elgar.
I took the high road which is quite a steep climb. It was still quite cloudy but the sun appeared through to make it quite warm, except up on top by the Hereford Beacon where it can only be described as “bracing”. As you can see from the panorama there are wonderful views of Herefordshire, Worcestershire and the Malverns themselves. The Iron Age fort is still clearly visible forming deep trenches around the hillside.
Years ago when my son was little the silence was broken by jet aircraft which could be seen approaching the hills below summit level before shooting upwards. They were said to be testing radar defences for low flying planes. Today there was just one helicopter droning above constantly and annoyingly just as police helicopters do back in Handsworth. Apart from this the scenery, the heather, small orange butterflies make it a joy to be out. It is evidently the same for others as they raise a greeting as we pass.
I then realise my train pass expired a few days back, although neither I nor my friend in the ticket office at the Hawthorns had noticed. This was quickly rectified at Great Malvern Station. The London Midland Service was to New Street with clearly impressive brand new stock. However we were told that everyone would have to change trains in an unscheduled stop at Worcester Shrub Hill. I changed at the previous Worcester Foregate Street. The Snow Hill trains are relative old and decrepid. Anyway we started promptly only to stop again just outside the station. It was announced that due to a broken down train in Shrub Hill there would be a delay – this was the train I had just left presumably. Finally we trundled into Shrub Hill where the train reverses direction. Out of Shrub Hill we stop again. Finally we progress through Kidderminster to Stourbridge Junction. “Due to the late running of this train” it wasannounced “the next stop will be Snow Hill, passengers for …The Hawthorns must change here”.
tt wasn’t long before a train destined for Leamington Spa came, so off we go again. A few yards down the line we stop again before crawling into Lye station, an unscheduled stop, We reached Hawthorns just past 6 o’clock a one hour journey having taken nearly two. This is not the first time a great day out has been a little tarnished by a wearying return home.