Tuesday, 27 April 2010

The Number 69 Route

Tuesday 27 April 2010

Mary, Linda and I met at Walthamstow bus station, only to be told that the area was being closed for some works, so we moved to the stop outside the huge supermarket instead.  The 69 soon arrived and we set off around 10.35, destination Canning Town. We had been here before, on the 48, not to mention the 58, and again we noted the large number of religious venues, including the London Healing Centre, and the Waltham Forest Nur-ul-Islam Centre, a Mauritian organisation, with an interest in sports.

But we also enjoyed 'Sweet Choice' with its offer of 'endearing food', cheering because there were a lot of boarded up and empty shops.
Then as we came into Leyton, we passed the handsome ex-town hall, now on the verge of becoming studios and business premises.  We also had fine views of the Olympic site, before forking left down Crownfield Road, with very determined attempts to calm the traffic.  
A number of shops cater for the East European market, though few as comprehensively as this one.  A number of shops were also looking towards 2012 and calling themselves 'Olympic' this or that.  We swept past St John's Church and through Stratford, passing Plaistow Station, and then crossing the Northern Outfall Sewer, part of Bazalgette's great works, and a pleasant embankment to walk along, should you wish to get to Beckton on foot.  The East London Cemetery next door is large, but seemed well tended;  it has an area which is in the care of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission.

As we passed Rathbone market, we were intrigued to notice an ex-pub, now flats, called Dick Turpin House, since w had always associated him with the Great North Road. However, he turns out to have been a local lad.  We knew we were approaching Canning Town Bus Station as we could see the huge road junction under which it nestles. The Dome was so close that it was hard to believe it was actually across the river.  We arrived at the handsome bus station after only 50 minutes, which seemed to pretty good, as we had swept eastwards and then back towards the west, through varied scenery, with dense population but also a surprising number of open spaces, looking ravishing in the spring sunshine.

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