– mainly because of poor timekeeping on Northern. My first train of the day from Sowerby Bridge to Manchester was late due to crawling along once it hit Lancashire. Four minutes delay by Hebden Bridge became 36 minutes by the time we reached Victoria. I get the impression that we were stuck behind a stopping service as we crawled from signal to signal around Rochdale.

Needless to say, this meant I missed my connections, so I was 40 minutes late for my first visit. Heading back I had pretty much an old Merseyrail Pacer to myself.

I managed to claw back a bit of time, so I was only 25 mins late at the second. After that I was back on schedule until a late running Trans Pennine Express service from Piccadilly to Victoria buggered things up again!

As Calder Valley services are more frequent the deficit could have been just 15 mins but then we were treated to a game of ‘change the platform at the last minute’! (from 6 to 5, which means traipsing over a footbridge). This seems a popular game at Victoria, although I’m not sure passengers see it that way…

The bizarre thing was that our train had been sitting in the platform (empty) for the past 20 minutes! The delay grew when the Conductor couldn’t get the doors to open so had to check the controls in each of the four cabs!

Now I’m finally on my way, hoping I beat the stormclouds to my final destination…