Monday, 16 December 2013

The W5 Route

Archway Station to Haringay Superstores
Monday September 24th 2012

At the point at which we rode this route (whilst in the high 300s and on a fearfully rainy day) this seemed the smallest sweetest bus we had yet seen – certainly only 1 door entry and exit and with two lengthy sections of Hail & Ride. Few of the pictures are very usable but here goes.
The changeover at Archway was effortless and the short wait likewise, and quite a few damp and waiting people peeled off from the queue to board; the guy in front of me was recalled by the driver and eventually was ejected - presumably for insufficient cash on his Oyster. 

Archway has a rather soulless face – tall blocks above the station and a fair sprinkling of Sixties bland including the pub named the Whittington Stone complete with  fabled cat , renowned for encouraging Dick Whittington to return to London.  The website attempts to distinguish myth from history..The pub is little better for disguising its bland face with window boxes.

This route does not make it to the top of the hill but turns off and into Hornsey Lane, which is resplendent with mansion flats and other impressive homes. The care home is named for Alice Fitzwarren, later to become Mrs Whittington and doubtless in charge of the cat. In fact several streets are also named for her. The joy of this route, and even visible from a modest single-decker is the fact it crosses over the Archway bridge, which gives the area its name.  The rather magnificent structure was built in 1897 and carries traffic over the A1. Unfortunately it has something of a reputation as a suicide bridge. The Roman Catholics seemed to have staked out this part of Highgate with both a large church, St Joseph’s and St Aloysius’ College, a boys only secondary school. These facts are not necessarily connected.

By the time the W5 turns into Stanhope Road it is on a Hail and Ride section, and it was at this point that the rain became a deluge, so not surprisingly people were desperate both to board and stay on the bus – as on many of these more local routes they knew each other and the driver too. Between the bucketing rain – hence washout pictures – we did a certain amount of uphill and downhill and more uphill coming out at Shepherd’s Hill – no woolly lambs, just a lot of parked cars both sides making it clear why this was such a small bus. This was our eventual approach to Crouch End sidling along first Crouch End Hill and then part of the Broadway – we applauded the coffee shop that proclaimed its independence from the usual chains.

Tottenham Lane has a YMCA whose website indicates they do much more than offering hostel beds, and close by is the Music Palace which seemed to be under the impression that Crouch End is a borough – NOT. It’s usually Harringay which is the borough round here, but probably Crouch End is one of its smarter areas?
Ferme Park Road into which the W5 turns is again a Hail and Ride section with most passengers bound for Sainsbury’s and the end of the route .The houses along here are for the main part handsome red brick villas – the very large ones doubtless sub-divided and on the whole getting smaller and more terraced towards Finsbury Park – the park, which features quite prominently on the Capital Ring Walk.  Two more railways to pass over and a nifty crossing of Green Lanes brings the W5 to its final destination known as the Haringay Superstores, which largely means Next and Sainsbury’s. We dashed into the latter to shelter from another deluge and did Jo’s shopping in double quick time.      
These  remind you how wet 2012 was...

No comments:

Post a Comment