LONDON TRIP - WORTH THE ANXIETY!

After all the stress of damn infections we set off to London complete with the children on a wild wet Friday afternoon! Walking through the station to the train wasn't too bad - lots of stops but OK. Got the train platform - just through the barriers - the gods were looking after us and then the search for the coach. OMG we had to walk down to the coach where we had reservations. That was very hard. I have learned another lesson - apart from giving ourselves masses of time - walk through the train if possible and next time I shall try to reserve tickets in the middle of the train! Arriving at London Kings Cross was really awful - the wind was howling down the platform and we had to walk the whole length of the train - again next time we will walk through the train regardless of rather difficult guards. The weather was dire - but we got to the taxi with the only need for relievers twice. Off to the hotel - a boutique(ish) hotel just half a mile from Westminster Abbey opposite a lovely square. Great hotel - easy access (apart from about 9 steps on the entrance - but even these were easy) The hotel rooms (apart from the top floor which does not have lift access!) are within easy reach of the lift!

The first evening we went out for dinner to find the restaurant was in the basement descending down a spiral staircase - not a chance! But the staff were lovely and we were given access through the staff lift. To add to the stress levels our youngest daughter started with an horrendous cold during dinner - I have never used so much hand gel!

We visited the Natural History Museum and the V & A and then out to the Jersey Boys only to find the Prince Edward Theatre stalls were downstairs with no lift access but it was OK - we waited until everyone had left and just slowly made our way up. The performance was fantastic - even with the sniffing in my left ear. Sunday was equally manic - I took the girls to the Zoo and Regents Street! My husband took our son to the Sherlock Holmes Museum and could even cope with three/four flights of stairs! The last day was open top bus day (we were very lucky with the weather) and the Buckingham Palace Mews to see the royal coaches.

My husband was very concerned about the return journey but the staff at Kings Cross told me the platform at the information desk half an hour before departure so that we could saunter down to the train. All in all a success.

I was so worried about going and all the potential pitfalls. BUT it was all OK, in fact it was fantastic. I wanted to write this blog to let you all know you can still get out and about - planning and preparation! Enjoy your days. TAD xxx

20 Replies

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  • Goodness Tad,I am out of breath reading about your great adventures!! Well done you,you managed marvelously,& the kids would have been delighted with everything.

    Planning & preparation are so important,& there's no reason not to enjoy the outside world,as you have found.You must have had a very well deserved self satisfied feeling!

    Where are you planning to go next?!

    Love Wendells xxx

  • Thank you Wendells - I am completely exhausted, I need a holiday to get over the short break! Take good care TAD xxx

  • Glad you had a good time and successful trip Tad, sounds like everyone enjoyed. Planning is the key.

    For people travelling alone, if you advise that you need disabled assistance when booking tickets you can have help to carry your bags from platform to platform. Also have access to disabled loos which are often locked in London stations, saves you trying to negotiate stairs with an overnight bag on wheels, besides you and a bag won't fit into the standard public loo and you can't leave it unattended. All these things just makes everything that much more possible.

    It is very tiring but worth the effort I think, just to be able to achieve it, congratulate yourself :)

    BC

  • Thanks BlakeyC - I just wanted everyone to know that even with severe COPD you can still get out and about. Interesting tips on the disables loos in London. xx

  • I meant to say if travelling by train. Coach trips may be an easier option. But I found that Kings Cross Station a marathon walk in itself when changing to underground to get across the city.

    You did good, I think keeping the exercise going stands us in good stead to help achieve these journeys :) Where there is a will there is a way :) ;)

  • So pleased you had such a good time I haven't been to London for about 15 years, the very thought gives me a fright. :)

  • HI exblonde, It has changed so much - the Olympics certainly had a positive impact. So clean. Kings Cross is a different station - so much more friendly. Bright, clean, airy and the staff actually act as though they want to help. TAD xx

  • Crikey Tad, that wasn't a trip it was an expedition. How very brave of you to tackle so much. You put the rest of us stop-at-homes to shame. Jolly well done!

    Love from Bobby xxx

  • It feels like it Bobby! I was so worried about going - it made me feel ill! But so very glad we did it, it has done my husbands confidence the world of good. There is life with COPD!! TAD xx

  • WOW! Well done. I am amazed at how much you fitted in when there. I worked in London donkeys years ago. To be fair, London has been getting its act together for years now. It has also been clean for quite some years too. I knew Canary Wharf as a collection of sheds. The improvement has been amazing. Hmmmm ... I also remember standing on the bridge in St Albans as a steam train went underneath. That's what I got for being a country kid at the time! You have banked lovely memories for you and the children - fantastic :-) Alison

  • Thank you - yes I think I may even make a memory book for my youngest. The centre of London was great - really easy access, clean etc. Even with the crowds!! xx

  • I loved your account of your trip to London. I love London and miss it a lot, but dont think I could do the journey now. Think it is the crowds that bother me. So many shows I would love to see + river trips and bomb sites. I trained as a nurse in London decades ago and it was the most exciting time of my life. So many shows I would love to see. See the Mousetrap is still on, or was.

  • I know exactly what you mean about the crowds though in fairness it didn't seem as bad as I had feared especially Kings Cross which has changed completely. We didn't dare do the river trip because it can be so cold on the river and the cold can completely flaw my husband. I love the shows - it is just so exciting - surprised at how casual the dress was! I remember getting dressed up to see a show - that seems to have gone by the wayside!! Take care. TAD xxx

  • London has always been exciting, one way or the other. I was taken up to Mayfair for a midday meal as a birthday treat about the time the riots occurred in August. We went through KingsCross which was undergoing renovations and was arduous to negotiate. Often thought it would be good if I could get my buggy up to London - so many places, galleries, exhibitions and things to do. love Annieseed xxx

  • I love the boat trip up the Thames to see London from an alternative view is something else. The houses of parliament are magnificent from the river view, well worth doing when the weather is fine, probably summer with sunshine the best option :)

  • What a lovely weekend,can I come next time?

  • You can KingoftheCocktails!! xx

  • I'm so glad you had a great time.

    Lynne xx

  • I'm so glad you had a great time.

    Lynne xx

  • Did you all get lots of photographs? You've made some great memories for the family so it was so worth it.

    What an inspiration you are :-)

    I live here and I just have to look at the Thames and the historical buildings steeped in history to make me happy :D

    There was a fantastic programme on the TV last night about Henry V11 with lovely shots of Westminster plus modern buildings. P

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