Photo of Salwick station sign“Sorry, I’ve turned the hot chocolate machine off.”

That was the reaction from the apologetic staff member at the coffee kiosk at Preston station. I found it slightly bizarre that they would start to switch off the equipment at around 3.30pm when the platforms were still teeming with passengers – especially when the server directed me to a rival café at the other end of the platform and told me to give my money to them instead. These are the sort of decisions that make sense to people in distant head office.

Having finally tracked down a chocolatey beverage, I took a moment to study the timetable for my next destination: Salwick.

Photo of Salwick timetable poster showing trains at 0700, 0802, 1202 and 1602

I am already a compulsive nail-biter, but this section of the trip had me nervous enough to chew off my entire fist. I was about to get on board the 1602 to Blackpool South, which would drop me off at Salwick at 1609. My return journey from Salwick to Preston (the last train of the day) was due to depart at 1615. Therefore I had just six minutes to grab my pictures and get back to the train. If I dawdled, I would find myself stranded in the village, facing either a hefty taxi bill or the prospect of camping outside the British Nuclear Fuels plant overnight.

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