Sunday 12 February 2017

March In February

Or February in March if you like. Either way it's jolly cold! As predicted in the last post on Saturday Tim and I drove to the Cambridgeshire Fens to watch the East Coast Mainline diverts. We intended to use March as a base but also go to a couple of quieter places as we both have an aversion to too many cameras in one place. It was my first time driving across the Fens and it was rather fun - lots of Acle Straights minus the traffic! Our first port of call was a level crossing just down the line from Manea Station, of which more later. This is a crossing with a 7ft underpass for cars and a manual crossing for larger vehicles. The crossing keeper reckoned there were over 150 trains on his shift so he wouldn't have needed the gym that night!

There was also a much unexpected sign at the crossing. No idea how it got there but it made for a good Twitter "Where Am I" quiz!

Just in case of Welsh tourists obviously!
We saw a couple of trains there then drove into March for personal needs - that cold gets to you! A bit busy for us but timed it perfectly to get a Virgin HST and Hull Trains Adelante passing each other, as well as the HST set using East Midlands Trains power cars. But we wanted somewhere quieter so headed off to Manea Station, which is where the last in this first set of vids was taken.

Manea is a lovely little station only served by the Greater Anglia Ipswich - Peterborough service. Two car length platforms which are rather exposed to the elements, and there were certainly elements when we were there! However the station iis maintained by the Manea community and there is quite the quaintest waiting room I think I've ever seen. It looks like a shed.

Yes that is a solar panel which activates the light sensitive light inside. Ah yes inside, well think doctor's waiting room really...

The information available is incredible. Up to date magazines are on the table, including RAIL magazine. the one thing missing though was a heater - something to think about maybe as had there been heating we'd have stayed there all day!

But hats off to the Manea community. We are really hoping there are more diverts when it gets warmer as we will be back!

But back to the trains and Manea was the perfect spot for watching the diverts.

Now some of you will know I'm not a fully paid up member of the Class 66 fan club. However just occasionally one turns up that even I think is ok. Multicoloured 66718 passed by as a treat, and I thought would be followed almost immediately by a Grand Central Adelante going the other way. however the Adelante approached and passed at snail's pace for some reason so feel free to fast forward!

Finally just to prove that Grand Central can go a bit faster...

Despite the cold it was a really good day. Thanks to Tim for his company, and now I'm really going for it and travelling by Southern Trains tomorrow! Report if I ever get back!

1 comment:

  1. Great post Steve! Looks as though you two had a great day out and it reminded me very much my old trainspotting days at March. The station has changed considerably as has the motive power, but it still looked to be a great place to be when the diverts are on.

    When the weather gets warmer I might do the trip myself. I've spent enough cold days on railway stations in the past and now value my comfort!