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Transport Advice please?
Topic Started: Jun 19 2011, 02:08 AM (520 Views)
jloyzaga
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Hi All, My (almost) 17yo son & I from Terra Australis are volunteers & staying at Hedley Centre 3-8 July. We are overnighting in Newcastle to transit both in and out of Vindolanda, & are planning to travel by the AD122 bus to the site. Thought being that hiring a car for mainly 5 days parked would be mad, but is trying to get in and out on the tourist bus madder? Other than that, we have no idea about what we're doing, clueless volunteers basically, but full of enthusiasm to be doing it!! Intimidating reading all of your (knowledgeable) blogs! Any advice re travel appreciated!!
Regards, Janine & Sebastian :blink:
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NicC
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You could try the train to Bardon Mill and a taxi from there to Vindo. But, as the AD122 goes to the West Car Park at Vindo it is only a 1/4 mile (if that) walk - mostly downhill - to the Hedley Centre.
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Badger
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Janine

First of all I envy you. It sounds like the good stuff is just waiting for your arrival!

You have two choices, both viable.

1. the AD122 bus is actually quite practical for your arrival. Look closely at the schedule though, it only leaves from Newcastle once in the morning. I think around 9am, and I know right in front of the Newcastle main train station (towards the east side, on the main street outside. It usually sits there for half an hour or so).

It will deposit you on the doorstep of Vindolanda, and is a fairly cheap pleasant ride. From the West gate drop off to the Hedley Center on the east side is probably a half mile. The gatekeepers would likely wave you through (bring your Friends of Vindo cards if compulsive), or just take the windy road that runs immediatly north of the site. Its the first sign of habitation after the Codley Gate Farm.

2. The option of taking the train from Newcastle is also not bad. Get off in Bardon Mills. If you are traveling light (I make the trip with just a backpack) it is a moderate stroll to the Hedly Center, maybe 2 miles. Nice countryside. I suspect you could also call a cab from Bardon Mills if you are traveling heavy. Trains run pretty often M-Fri, might be a little less often on a Sunday.

Sometimes getting back to N.Castle post dig is a little trickier. Fiona at the Vindo trust can tell you about getting a taxi direct to N.Castle airport (costs around 30 pounds) if time is tight. I made the trip in the following manner.
--walk Twice Brewed Inn to corner.
--AD 122 bus to Hexham.
--train Hexham to Newcastle
--Metro NC central station to NC airport.
Expect a boring stay at NC airport if you are going that way....never before seen a place where you have to sit in their shopping court for so long before going to the gates!
Enjoy, and post to WeDig if possible.

Make sure you have sticky toffee pudding at the Twice Brewed, and uphold the Vindo tradition at the Tuesday night Twicey Quiz!

Tim Wolter


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PhilN
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Hi Janine and all

Your question re-travel to Vindolanda and the fact that your an Aussie as well got me all misty eyed and reminiscing about my 2 weeks there in Aug 2009. Tims options are all spot on and give you a couple of good options. I came from the other direction through Carlisle by train and got off at Bardon Mill having spent some time down Bath way and after my stay I took the AD 122 to Hexham then train to Newcastle.

As an enthusiastic and somewhat naive newcomer to the area I walked from Bardon Mill up to the Twice Brewed which looked like an easy stroll on the map...haha. In the end though as I had plenty of time it was a great way to experience the country side around the dig and not overly difficult if you are traveling light.

Hope you have as good a time as I did, it was a very enjoyable and rewarding experience and well worth the trip. I definitely concur with Tims recommendation for the Tuesday night quiz at the Twicey..loads of fun with no special talents required!

Regards Phil

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Attachments: B_Mill_to_Twicey.jpg (1.71 MB)
Edited by PhilN, Jun 19 2011, 06:42 AM.
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Badger
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Ah, but in the interests of complete advice I should mention that the Twicey Quiz is now on Monday.
Still the worst pub quiz in Great Britain, and damned proud of the fact.

TW
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jloyzaga
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Thanks to all for the detailed advice. Had checked the bus times will give it a go, but if we mess up we now have lots of options!
Will be into the sticky toffee pudding for sure, and will endeavour to make the Twicey quiz, if it's the worst in Britain we might have a shot...
Looking forward to a great week.
Thanks & Regards,
Janine
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maryb_10
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Janine -- I took the train in/out of Newcastle a week ago, and can vouch that it is incredibly easy. Got off in Bardon Mill, and called the Haydon Bridge taxi company listed on the board at the train station. (I'm sure that the walk isn't bad...but I had no idea where I was going!) The taxi arrived about 10-15 minutes later, and the drive to the Hedley Center took under 10 minutes. If I remember correctly, the taxi fare was about 7 pounds.
Enjoy your week!
Mary
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snowglobe
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This just shows how great we dig is to offer advice, I spent 4 weeks on site this spring without a car & had no trouble getting about, it's a nice summer evening walk to the pub quiz or there's always the chance of a lift from another digger. I don't know any other quiz which offers such rich choice of true treasure to temp the wery excavator to take part! Good advice to remember the friends of Vindolanda card.
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Badger
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Janine
I suppose it is a little late to change plans, but what you are proposing to do-stay a night in Newcastle-was what I did my first trip over. Never again.
All the hotels in downtown Newcastle seem to be the sort of places that host batchelor and batchelorette parties (Stags and Hen and Chicks locally). Noisy. Not a great deal for the money.
Of course if sufficiently jet lagged you will sleep anywhere.
But if I were getting in at all early I would just hop on the train to Hexham and stay there.
Very pretty. You can stock up on anything you forgot to bring. And the AD122 bus runs more often in the central section.
Just a thought.
I recall searching for hotels in Newcastle before my first trip and found one entry that said:
"Very popular for Stag/Hen and Chick parties. Repairs from recent fire almost complete."

Tim Wolter
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