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And home we come - Off in the distance
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May 2016
 

The Bellinghman
Date: 2009-03-31 11:34
Subject: And home we come
Security: Public
Our homeward route was a little different from normal. That normal route would be along the North Welsh coast, using the A55 and M56, turning south down the M6 and M6 Toll, and then east along the A14.

That's not quite what we did.

Firstly, I'd not filled up in Dublin, because of the price of petrol there: what with the way the Euro has risen against Sterling, it was definitely not cost effective to try to buy it there, so I was waiting till we got back to Holyhead. But we didn't spot a filling station at Holyhead, and the new A55 misses all the villages as it crosses Ynys Môn. So, finally seeing a sign for services, we dived off down to Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch and filled up there.

We then rejoined the A55 to cross the Menai Straits, but then got distracted again, because it was still daylight (the advantage of the earlier ferry) and I had this urge to go hunting the place where my family used to stay on holiday when I was a child. That's on the London Road - the A5. So we dived off down that road, which is deeply scenic, passing Bethesda and other small villages. Somewhere just beyond Betws-y-Coed, I think I recognised the turn (and I'm pretty sure that here is the actual place). (Somewhere about this point, I picked up a black van behind me, which followed me as far as Birmingham.) So we ended following the A5 down to where it becomes the M54, and followed that till it reached the M6.

(The thing about coming in on that road is that it's a little too far south for the SmartNav to consider it worth using the M6 Toll. So we drove down past Birmingham with much of the distance being roadworks, and an even larger distance being driven past a stationary queue of northbound traffic. Coming down to the M6/M1 junction, we saw signs warning that the A14 was closed between junctions 3 and 7. This would appear to be a regular overnight occurrence, since there was a signed diversion taking traffic a number of junctions further down the M1 before hooking back up the A45 round Northampton. But SmartNav reckoned that wasn't particularly sensible for us, since we are going to a point south of the A14, and going north back up to it, along it, and then south again is a bit round the houses.

So it was guiding us down the M1, and then taking us across via the A507.

then we hit a problem. Because the A507 was also closed, eastbound from the A507/A6 junction, and the SmartNav didn't know about this closure (it was a signed diversion), and it tried to guide us back to this road. Not good. Eventually, we got a route up to Sandy , and got round it, but the result of our scenic excursion via small mountain roads, stopping for a meal and some shopping, and having two east-west roads closed was that we didn't get home till 22:00, which is only about 2.5 hours earlier than previously.
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Johanna
User: mrs_warwick
Date: 2009-03-31 11:15 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
For future reference, the only filing station in Holyhead is at Tesco. I'm trying to think how you'd get to it from the port exit, but as I never go that route, I'm drawing a blank. There should also be one at the Valley Crossroads - I thought the new road still went that way. (I wonder how long it will be before we stop calling it the new road - it's been open for at least 5 years now!).
I much prefer to go home via the A5 rather than the A55. We plan for the journey to be slow, and we pick plenty of stopping and leg stretching stops.
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The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2009-03-31 11:33 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
I thought there was one at a junction too, but damned if we noticed it. And hunting all over Holyhead for a hypothetical Tesco/Siansbury/whatever wasn't at the top of my list (though I suspect I could have asked the SmartNav for the nearest filling station). On the other hand, since I was getting a little low on fuel, I hadn't intended to wait till Bangor. (Though LlanfairPG isn't much short of Bangor, after all.)

The A5 route is a beautiful road, but with our normal arrival time into Holyhead being 20:00 or so, we tend to take the fast dual route because that gets us home not too long after midnight. Now the new road west of Chester is finally open, it's even quicker.

I'm not sure I'd really want to take the A5 through the mountains in the dark: it's a very twisty road, even if my inner child loves it dearly.
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Kimberley Verburg: kim buddy
User: sierra_le_oli
Date: 2009-03-31 11:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:kim buddy
I love English people. :-D
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The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2009-03-31 11:49 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Oh, we can talk road routing for simply hours.

Do neither Cloggies nor Kiwis do the same? Or is it a product of the uniquely unplanned British road system?
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Kimberley Verburg: kim buddy
User: sierra_le_oli
Date: 2009-03-31 11:52 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Keyword:kim buddy
It seems to be a singularly English habit. Obviously, NZ's road network is a bit more straightforward than GB's. Maybe that's why, there must be a reason!
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The Bellinghman
User: bellinghman
Date: 2009-03-31 12:09 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Oh, I don't think it's just the English. I'm fairly sure I could turn up some Welsh or Scots who do it too, and I'm not sure the Irish are immune either, now I think of it. But then the Irish road system is ... challenging.
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irishkate
User: irishkate
Date: 2009-04-01 13:43 (UTC)
Subject: (no subject)
Still, we don't discuss routing anything like the way the english do... And we rarely use road numbers - more likely to say you take the road to clonmel, then on to cahir, then join the cork-dublin road going to cork. Then you go through the tunnel and take the exit to Ringaskiddy...

(this would get you from my mum's to near my house!)
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