Page 30 - Chiron Calling Spring 2019
P. 30

 Short; Résumé of our very successful jaunt. See time table:
Mon 29th Oct
Dep Kings Cross at 12.00hrs Arrive Inverness 20.15hrs
Stopover; in Inverness.
Tues 30th Oct
Dep Inverness at 07.55hrs Arrive Edinburgh 11.25hrs
Dep Edinburgh 14.30hrs Arrive Aberdeen 17.10hrs
Stopover; In Aberdeen.
Wed 31st Oct
Dep Aberdeen 14.52hrs Arrive Newcastle 17.26hrs
Dep Newcastle 22.45hrs Arrive Sunderland 23.05hrs
Stopover; In Sunderland.
Thu 01st Nov
Dep Sunderland Metro 12.00hrs Arrive Newcastle 12.45hrs
Dep Newcastle 12.50hrs Arrive Edinburgh 14.20hrs
Stopover; in Edinburgh.
Fri 02nd Nov
Dep Edinburgh 13.00 Arrive Kings X 17.45hrs = phew back in our own beds.
Met at Kings Cross Station by the Station Master, who due to heavy duties handed us over to his appointed representative,
we were ushered to the train by a group of London North East Railway (LNER) and Virgin East Coast employees, introduced to the train manager, who showed us to our seats, we gave each of the senior personnel a printed hand-out sheet, given to us by the media people in the RH, as we did henceforth on each train we boarded. We would have covered the West Coast but for some reason, Virgin West coast was not going to play with us.
Stop-over at Inverness, it was cold and there was snow on the tops. I remember Inverness from way back in the 1950s. Nothing has changed much in this sleepy city. Sadly we arrived late at night and had to leave first thing in the morning, no time to catch up with the Poppy vendors as we had intended to do. For some reason, the train was not running, and Virgin EAST COAST had laid on coaches to take us on the next leg of the trip, nice scenery, but no chance to walk the train and meet the public.
The reception & hospitality we received by both Virgin East Coast & LNER staff, both on the train and in the stations was second to none and was repeated on all legs of the journey. Many passengers came up and wanted to chat asking what we were doing and why? this broke the ice and we became pen friends with many of them.
Aberdeen; We met up with the Curator and staff of the Maritime Museum, what a wonderful experience, this museum is a must if you are ever up in Aberdeen.
The Scottish hospitality was overwhelming, everywhere we went we were made to feel welcome.
Edinburgh; first visit was a great success, we happened to meet the poppy sellers who escorted us back to our train, they came to the platform to wave goodbye to us as the train pulled out of the Station, little did they or us know we would be back.
Day in Newcastle. Once more a City I last visited back in the 1950s. Not much time to spend here so we walked around looking for the Poppy Sellers, sadly we never meet up with them. Back on the train.
Edinburgh second visit; on our return we were heralded as returning family, we met the Lord Provost, we were on forces Radio and Scottish TV. We had photos with the City Piper, we then had a lovely film shoot with a Kilted Violinist playing a lament as a city elder read out an exaltation. We were photographed with the Band of (I think it was) the Royal Scots Greys, all organised by the Scottish Branch of the Royal British Legion.
On our last day we were given a tour of the Scottish Poppy Factory, wow, it bought a tear to my heart. We were then escorted to the station and waved goodbye to from the platform.
A huge thank you to all the staff of Virgin East Coast & LNER. without whom we could not have succeeded in our mission.
Thank you to all the Scots. Fond memories. Barrie.
Royal Hospital RAVC In-Pensioner Barrie Davey Trip to Scotland – October 2018

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