Wednesday, 19 October 2011

The Number 238 Route

Tuesday 23 March 2010

This was the continuation of a journey to Barking, in order to pick up the 62, and Jenny and I (in the absence of Mary and Linda) were onto the 238 at 10.20, after a visit to the salubrious (but 20p) loos in the Stratford Shopping Centre (the bus station loos being locked)  We had also paused to look at the enormous building site for the Stratford Westfield. (O tempora, O mores! Westfield East now open and boasting, apparently, millions of shoppers, though inadequate bike parking)

We passed the Theatre Royal and St John's Church again and soon were able to admire the covered basket ball courts and other facilities of West Ham Park, which is run by the City of London.  We also passed the HQ of the 7th Battalion the Rifles TA, and the imposing Ramgharia Gurdwara.  

We wriggled through a remarkable number of National Grid and Thames Water roadworks, giving Jenny plenty of time to comment on the large numbers of tyre shops (she says it's true all over London, though I hadn't noticed)  They are often on corners, a bit like undertakers.

There was another fine park as we travelled along Plashet Grove, with Plashet School on both sides of the road, linked by a rather funky footbridge. 

We were soon into East Ham, and past East Ham Station, noticing Burges Road, where Eliza used to live.  It is now a one way street, as we discovered when we passed its other end, something it wasn't back then.  We also noted Wilkinson's Supermarket, not a name known to us, but deriving from Leicestershire. There are lots more of them now - or perhaps we just weren't looking 18 months ago.

We crossed the River Roding,  pretty canalised around here, and the North Circular before heading along London Road and into Barking town centre, arriving at Barking Station at 11.00, ready for our walk through Barking to pick up the 62.


  1. Just a little note that the covered basketball pitch is in Stratford Park not West Ham Park (which was further along this route; surrounding the Army Regiment) and is actually a public garden, not owned by City of London. Most people think Stratford Park and West Ham Park are the same thing but in fact its not true.

  2. Some updates, firstly the loos. Those in the bus station no longer exist (they are now a staff rest area). Those in Stratford Centre, in which must be a first anywhere in the UK, are now free!

    The "fine park" along Plashet Grove is unsurprisingly called Plashet Park. It is home to the Newham Register Office which used to be the Passmore Edwards Public Library. I suspect it is for this reason that it is a "fine" park, as there is often a good floral display around the building.

    Finally, the picture of Barking station is now quite different. Although the station buildings look the same, the bus lay-by and the taxi rank outside Barking Station no longer exist and the whole area is pedestrianised. Some of the buses stop approximately where the double-yellow lines are by the taxi rank, and the rest stop well beyond the traffic lights. The taxis now have a very small pull-in just before the traffic lights (which makes it quite awkward to pull out when there are buses blocking the view directly behind).