The Angel has a theme of the difference between urban and rural — particularly the contrast that can be experienced twice a day by people commuting into central London from some surprisingly rem0te areas, as I’ve just started to do again after more than a five-year hiatus.
I can now go from an office window with a view of Buckingham Palace (and the London Eye and Gherkin the other way) to a station that has one platform, one railway track and no ticket machine, let alone a ticket office. It does, though, have probably the best views of the Chilterns of any station and walkers can be up on the hilltops on the Ridgeway national trail within twenty minutes of getting off the train.
Walking is the best option for getting to and from the station as the Onward Transport Options map at the station shows, pictured below.
Note there’s nothing marked on the map in terms of facilities — apart from the H for hotel that denotes the Bernard Arms. (Walkers shouldn’t take the map too literally. If they were to take what looks like a road opposite the H at the bottom of the map, they’d likely find they’d be ambushed by armed police before long as it’s an un-signposted and very private road into Chequers.)
But just to show the stereotype of rural buses is still alive and well — and real — this is what the detail of the poster provides for alighting passengers.
So while,Â if you’re lucky,Â you can arrive from London Marylebone in less than an hour, you may discover you have to wait five days for the next bus – if it’s the one that runs on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1030. The bus to High Wycombe is of limited usefulness as it goes one direction but doesn’t come back again.
It seems like the transport options are worse than they would be on a remote Hebridean island or on top of some Welsh mountain but the poster must have been put together by someone from National Rail who was more than usually pedantic as it omits to mention that a three or four minute walk up the road will lead the passenger to bus stops that have a service every 20 minutes during the day between Aylesbury and High Wycombe — and runs until well past 11 in the evening. But knowing that spoils the sense of rural idyll in the same way as the makers of Midsomer Murders film around the location and omit the fact that almost the nearest thing that can be described as a village shop is actually Tesco’s.