Last week, we had noticed the 452 bus that went, we discovered, from Vauxhall to Kensal Rise, and we agreed that on our next Expotition we would take it and see where it went. Well, to Kensal Rise, obvs, but where was Kensal Rise and how did the bus get there?
We started off by getting a P5 into Brixton and then a 2 up to Vauxhall - I had thought we might take the Tube, but a bus was coming. It is a very grey and dull day, but not raining.
At Vauxhall bus station there wasn't long to wait for a 452.
At first, it followed the route of the 196 from Vauxhall, down past Nine Elms Sainsbury's and the new Tube Station, Springfield Church, and so on, but where the 196 turns left, it goes straight on, past Wandsworth Road station, and so to Cedars Road, where it turns right, and follows the route of the 137 across Chelsea Bridge, up Sloane Street (I was surprised to see cafés in the middle of Sloane Square) and into Knightsbridge (incredibly slow, as always).
Then it turns up Kensington Gore, and goes past the Royal Albert Hall and the Albert Memorial,
and so on to Kensington High Street, turning right up Kensington Church Street, passing Notting Hill Gate and then Ladbroke Grove. Just before the Regents Canal and the Westway it did a quick dive into a big Sainsbury's - how useful of it - and then came back on to the main road, and so up to Kensal Rise Station.
We got off the bus and went to look for a cup of tea. In fact, most of the cafés, we discovered too late, too late, were on the other side of the road, and had we crossed, we would have had a wide choice. As it was, we found a Gail's Bakery with benches outside, which was nice (we had jackets today!). The Swan Whisperer had a cup of coffee and a granola bar, and I had a cup of Earl Grey - I don't know what the brand was, but it was delicious. I would have liked something to eat, but decided it would spoil my supper if I did, so resisted temptation.
After we had finished our drinks, we saw there was a southbound 452 coming, so we caught it and stayed on it as far as Sloane Square, where we got off and walked across the square to see how it had changed. Peter Jones is covered in scaffolding and looked almost derelict, but I think it was open. At the other end, the Royal Court Theatre is still there. I took a picture of the cafés.pork and bean casserole, which I put into the slow cooker section of the Instant Pot. Unfortunately, I think I should have cooked it on high rather than medium, as the potatoes and carrots are still crunchy, but nothing that 5 minutes or so in the pressure cooker function won't cure.