I’ve never used the Newcastle metro before and my first plan to get a train from the station next to the central railway station were foiled after I discovered it was shut for maintenance. Fortunately there was a sign saying where the nearest open station was, which was only 0.4 miles away, so it could have been worse.
The metro, which is properly known as the Tyne and Wear Metro, was first opened in August 1980 and they’ve added on chunks since, with 60 stations now on the network. There are two lines and the one I was going to use was closed, but they had merged the services together a bit during the maintenance which meant that I could still get to the airport easily enough. The journey from the city centre to Newcastle airport took around 25 minutes, not including the 20 minute walk to get to the damn thing.
It was more like the London Underground than I had anticipated, including a train to a similarly named station. There were staff members at the entrance to the station who were helpful and engaging.
I was pleased to discover that it’s like the DLR in London, so it’s possible to sit at the front (or rear) and pretend to be driving. I’m too mature to be impressed by that of course, but I’m sure Dylan and Leon would like it….
It wasn’t the busiest train. By not the busiest, I mean that I was the only passenger in the carriage. It was all very efficient and the price of the trip was included in my rail ticket, so there was some integrated ticketing going on. It looks a well-run service, if only Norwich could have something similar.