A more relaxed (and possibly cheaper) way to London and the South ….

Posted on October 14th, 2009, by The Chairman

If you live towards the Chester end of our line and are thinking of going to London or points south of Banbury and aren’t in a hurry, have you thought of using the Wrexham & Shropshire services from Wrexham and Shrewsbury?

Whilst not as fast as Virgin from Chester to London (it’s similar to Banbury for connections south), there are some good deal fares available via the W&S web site. You can even get your ticket by text message saving you having to work out how to get to a FastTicket machine to collect your ticket before you travel.

Trains are loco-hauled (or loco-pushed!) with comfy Mark III coaches, many recently refurbished. First Class even includes a decent three course meal served with proper cutlery and crockery and a very attentive crew. There’s a buffet for those in Standard Class at very reasonable prices.

Personally, I suffer from motion sickness on the Virgin Pendolinos (or is it Pendolinii?!!) if I try to work on my laptop as we’re speeding and tilting along. W&S also has free wi-fi (though not quite as good as Virgin’s) and unlike Virgin’s it is free in Standard Class. At a more relaxed pace this works for me if I have the time. A true mobile office.

Let us know your experiences if you use it. W&S’ web site is www.wrexhamand shropshire.co.uk

Please leave a comment

  1. John Hulme Says:

    Good Morning John

    I have not tried this service yet but whilst on the canals in late September I was crossing the Chirk Aqueduct and the service passed by.

    If only I had my camera handy but I was concentrating on helming the boat.

    It looks a great way to travel – small number of carriages so I assume a high level of personal service.

    By the way – our final destination was Llangollen and the Steam Railway. Once again an excellent day out with lunch at The Grouse Inn, Carrog.

    John

  2. The Chairman Says:

    I used the W&S service again last Thursday, the 1217 from Marylebone to Shrewsbury (regretfully it terminates at Shrewsbury, but I hear it’s extended to Wrexham again from the December 2009 timetable).

    I was on a £55 First Advance Single with the ticket delivered as a text to my mobile phone. We left on time with the conductor Richard, who used to be a guard on our line, zapping my text with his electronic ticket reader. The complementary menu was different from 3 weeks ago. I had the paté followed by Welsh Lamb Shank with mashed potatoes and vegetables. Delicious! And with the free wifi (it’s a bit variable in the London area, but seems to improve as you get out into the Chilterns) to keep up to date with emails, work, etc.

    Arriving in Shrewsbury at 1541 (5 minutes late after minor delays in the Wolverhampton area), the connections to our line were either via the 1553 to Stockport from Milford Haven which was on time, or the 1622 to Chester (and Holyhead) from Birmingham International, also on time.

    Great customer service. What a delighful way to travel.

  3. The Chairman Says:

    Wrexham & Shropshire – “The End”. Very sad! – Here’s the announcement.

    A great attempt, but just not profitable.

    I wonder how long it will be before Virgin withdraw their early morning Wrexham to Euston service and the return in the evening?….

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