Wtd: advice upcoming visit to Bletchley Park / comp museum

Bill Degnan billdegnan at gmail.com
Sun Jul 7 04:40:31 CDT 2019

On Sat, Jul 6, 2019, 3:57 PM Peter Corlett via cctech <cctech at classiccmp.org>

> On Sat, Jul 06, 2019 at 12:54:28PM +0300, Bill Degnan via cctech wrote:
> > Hi...I am arriving at Gatwick Airport this weds evening1045pm and I have
> a
> > 17 hour layover.  I'd like to visit the national computer museum at
> > bletchley park about an hour north. [...]
> It's actually *two* hours north; three if you want to add a safety margin.
> Remember the old saying: 200 years is a long time in the USA, and 200
> miles is
> a long way in the UK.
> I advise against driving, especially if you're unfamiliar with British
> roads.
> It will be both slower and more expensive than the train for this
> particular
> route because London is in the way. Petrol works out at over $7/gal, and
> you
> get to navigate the infamous M25 motorway-cum-car-park. It's debatable
> whether
> it will be more convenient.
> There are railway stations at both Gatwick and Bletchley. Bletchley Park
> is a 3
> minute walk from the station.
> If you do the standard tourist thing at the ticket office/machine, they'll
> screw you to the tune of £42.10 for an "any permitted" return ticket, which
> sends you on the Gatwick Express to the wrong side of London, the Tube back
> across London, and then another train to Bletchley. More changes between
> more
> modes of transport mean more risk of things going wrong.
> A "via Ken[sington] Olympia" ticket is £28.80, which would be my preferred
> route anyway. Gatwick to Clapham Junction, a quick change to the next
> platform,
> then onward to Bletchley. You do not need to stop at or change at Olympia.
> Both train routes take about two hours; the Olympia one is less frequent
> and
> slower by a few minutes according to the optimistic routing models which
> think
> the Tube pays any sort of attention to the timetable, but tends to be
> faster in
> practice. You might consider buying the more expensive "any permitted"
> ticket
> anyway as insurance to give you more flexibility if things go wrong.
> Have a play with https://traintimes.org.uk/GTW/BLY, but if you don't
> change the
> date, it won't show you Olympia routes because they've closed the West
> London
> Line this weekend, ostensibly for maintenance, but possibly just spite.
> This
> won't be the case on Thursday when you're travelling.

I believe getting to a hotel in the Bletchely area just before midnight on
Weds from Gatwick will not be so bad due to the later time/less traffic.
The issue it the return.

Refined question - When would I have to depart the museum in order to
travel by rental car (driving legal speeds) from Bletchley to Gatwick
Airport in time for a 4PM flight on 7/11 (A Thursday)?  I will have left
the airport originally on an extended layover between flights, I assume I
on my return I will have to go through security all over again.

I greatly appreciate all of the advice given.  I really don't like the idea
of pushing it given the times involved but I have the enthusiasm to try if


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