1997 John O’Groats to Lands End – The Journey North

The day of reckoning had finally arrived and after a day at the office I arrived home to complete the final packing.   The bike was loaded onto the car and Sarah and Ben delivered me to Fareham railway station with plenty of time to spare.   We said our farewells and I boarded the 17:20 train direct to London Waterloo.   The journey was uneventful, other than watching other cyclist load and unload their cycles on and off the train and wondering how my bike was coping in the somewhat cramped guardsman.   We arrived at Waterloo on time and amazingly the bike had survived without a scratch.   I then set off for the short ride across London to Euston station, the journey taking less than 20 minutes and the streets being surprisingly quiet.

I hung around outside Euston station for half an hour before going inside and making my way to the departure gate for the sleeper to Inverness.   The time passed quite quickly and there was entertainment watching a heated argument between a coloured gentleman and the Metropolitan police, needless to say the police eventually won and the guy was taken into custody.

I boarded the sleeper at 21:00 and locked my bike safely in the guardsman after first checking that I had the correct coach as the train splits on its’ journey north.   Having never been on a sleeper before this was a new experience and I was very impressed with the standard of accommodation.   I met my sleeping partner who immediately departed for the buffet bar and after seeing the train through Watford junction, decided to take to my bed for an early night.