We were on Loughborough station last week when the through train to London roared past. It always strikes me as ill-mannered, like a drunken lout barging through a bus queue. Those Edwardian glass canopies over our heads speak on a gentler time.
The week before Jacqueline and I had been the guilty parties, zigzagging across Europe on our way home from Budapest. Vienna, Frankfurt, Cologne, Brussels, London St Pancras; we hauled our cases across six major stations in four days. We could have tarried longer, but there was an important meeting back home.
This was the initial meeting with the consultant from HS2, the high speed rail link which slices through half a mile of our land. If this was new territory for us it was not for him, he has been paving the way for our high speed trains for the last fifteen years The line will run parallel to the A42 motorway, trapping about fifty acres of our woodland and farmland in between. Our two farmsteads will not see or hear it, being in a deep cutting, but at the northern end it will run on an embankment twenty feet hight; those cottages nearby will feel the draught.
How do I feel about it? Mildly in favour I suppose, The small saving of time is quoted, disparagingly, but my hope is that Victorian network can go back to serving the local towns. Properly co-ordinated it can take pressure off the roads. Then there next train approaching Loughborough station will be for me.