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Omen II

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Everything posted by Omen II

  1. I am so sorry to read this news and wish John Williams all the best for a speedy recovery. The LSO will play their hearts out for him on Friday, make no mistake. 😢
  2. The screen is there for the live to picture performances of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban today and tomorrow. I would not assume it will still be there for the John Williams concert.
  3. Since the terrorist attacks in London last year, security at the Royal Albert Hall has been beefed up. If you have a bag with you, it will be searched by security guards at a little table as soon as you have entered the building and had your ticket scanned. For weekday evening concerts I often travel straight from work and am usually asked to leave my bag (a small backpack) in one of the cloakrooms, which is no hassle. Note that there is a £1 charge for each item deposited, so make sure you have some change. Given the high profile of the concert and performers, I would expect security to be particularly tight for the John Williams concert. At some of the concerts I have attended this year the stewards have asked people entering the building to leave their bags at one of the cloakrooms and I have seen people stopped by the stewards from entering the arena and advised that they need to check their bags in. The cloakrooms are not particularly well signposted inside the hall, but if you are sitting in the Arena there is a cloakroom at basement level accessed via door 6 and down one flight of stairs from the Dangoor Foyer (it is not shown on the Royal Albert Hall plan for some reason). There is also a cloakroom on ground level at door 9, but it is not always open. That said, for The English Patient last week I had a seat in one of the second tier boxes and was able to take my bag in and leave it on one of the coat hooks in the box. The cloakrooms are open for ticket holders two hours before the start of a concert, so it is unlikely that you would be able to drop off your shopping and go away again (but you could always ask). There is not a general cloakroom accessible to all and sundry as there is at the Barbican or the Royal Festival Hall, for example.
  4. It's not an app as such, but I always use the journey planner at the Transport for London website for journeys within London. It is very accurate and you can tailor your requirements (for example, if you wanted journeys that avoid buses, where you can take your bike on the train, etc.). TfL Journey Planner You can also find the journey planner via the official TfL Oyster and Contactless app, which is brilliant for keeping track of your journey history and spending on your Oyster and / or contactless card. I also use the Bus Times (London Live Bus Countdown) app which uses GPS technology to tell you when the next bus will reach your stop. As my usual journey to work involves two buses and three Tubes, these are probably the two most useful apps I have on my phone. https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/tfl-oyster-and-contactless/id1179420088?mt=8 https://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/london-live-bus-countdown/id475360935?mt=8 If you or anyone else needs any particular advice on any journeys within London, I am happy to give any pointers.
  5. Composer Gabriel Yared, conductor Ludwig Wicki, vocalist Eleanor Grant and the Royal Philharmonic Concert Orchestra after tonight's world premiere of The English Patient live in concert.
  6. I use the BBC Weather app, but the Met Office Weather Forecast app is also very good. The Met Office (http://www.metoffice.gov.uk) is based in Exeter and is the UK's national weather service.
  7. Thank you, that is kind of you both. Yes, I will be attending the concert (try stopping me!) but as I will be coming straight from work the meet up beforehand will be too early for me. I might be up for a nightcap afterwards.
  8. If you set up an account and register your Oyster card at the Transport for London website, then you will be refunded the outstanding credit by TfL if your card is lost or stolen. You are right however about the queues for topping up Oyster cards at the busiest stations, which is why many Londoners who travel frequently also opt for auto top-up. This means that whenever the pay-as-you-go credit on your Oyster card drops below £10, it automatically tops up with your choice of either £20 or £40 when you next touch the card on the reader. As much as we love to queue in Britain, I have not had to top up my Oyster card at a ticket machine for donkey's years. I receive an e-mail every time it has topped up and the amount is charged to the credit card I have registered with my TfL account. P.S. I like John Williams. 🦄
  9. Just to be clear, a single fare on TfL Rail between Heathrow and Paddington in peak hours using an Oyster or contactless card is £10.20, or £10.10 off peak. It is therefore more expensive than the Tube but cheaper than the Heathrow Express.
  10. I am actually, my mistake. I have rechecked and it's 'only' £25 single during peak hours or £37 return. A single fare using an Oyster card from Heathrow to Paddington during peak hours is £5.10, or £3.10 off peak.
  11. It really depends on where in London you want to get to, how much time you have and how much money you want to spend. If you are heading to Paddington or somewhere near there, the Heathrow Express is definitely the quickest because it takes about 16 or 17 minutes and does not stop anywhere else once it leaves the airport. However, it is much more expensive than using TfL Rail or the Tube (Piccadilly line) and, as mentioned previously, you cannot use Oyster or contactless cards to pay for journeys on the Heathrow Express. I have never used the Heathrow Express myself but a quick look at their website suggests that a peak single fare is an eye-watering £27. Unless time is a factor for you, the journey time to central London on the Piccadilly line is not exactly arduous (only 40 minutes to South Kensington with no changes, for example). Alternatively, TfL Rail services run the same route into London Paddington as the Heathrow Express but stop at six or seven stations, so the journey takes about 28 minutes. Again, that's hardly the Trans-Siberian express.
  12. @Jay Here is some useful information about contactless payment cards and travel in London. Obviously I cannot tell you for definite if your bank card can be used or not, but hopefully there is enough information there to help you decide if it is for you. Contactless payment cards and Oyster cards are valid for almost all public transport in London. You can even use them on River Buses and on the Emirates Airline (the cable car which crosses the River Thames in Docklands).
  13. The weekly cap stops you paying more than the cost of the equivalent weekly travel card, however many journeys you make. Once you have reached the cap you effectively travel free; when you touch your card out on the Oyster readers the display will show a deduction of 0.00 and the barriers will still open to let you through. This also applies to the daily cap, which is the same for both Oyster cards and contactless payment cards. I am sure I covered contactless cards earlier in one of these threads, but I will see if I can dig out the link again.
  14. I would definitely recommend either an Oyster card each or a contactless payment card each if you already have them. Either will work and will cost the same, although you would also get weekly capping if you used a contactless card. If you have an Amex card it should work fine in lieu of an Oyster card.
  15. Oyster cards are not valid as far as Stansted, so you would need to buy a single ticket at Liverpool Street. I can give you more details later today when I have finished work if you like.
  16. You can buy an Oyster card at Heathrow for a £5 deposit plus however much credit you want to put on it. It will cover you from Heathrow to central London on either the Piccadilly line or TfL Rail (the stopping service into London Paddington) but NOT on the Heathrow Express. For a four day stay your best bet is to use pay as you go credit rather than buying a weekly travel card. Alternatively, many contactless payment cards will also work and you will be charged the same (but check the validity of your Norwegian bank card first).
  17. On Friday and Saturday nights the Tubes run all through the night now on parts or all of the deep level lines including the Piccadilly, Victoria, Jubilee and Central. It is called (unsurprisingly) the Night Tube. Parts of the London Overground also run all night. We are a 24 hour city! In terms of proximity to the Royal Albert Hall, stations such as South Kensington and Lancaster Gate will have services all night, but they will stop at about 1 a.m. from High Street Kensington as there is no all-night service on the District or Circle lines. This map might help: Night Tube map There are also night buses from central London to many parts of the suburbs, which are an experience like nothing else in the world. The only sober person on board is usually the driver and there are times when even that is debatable.
  18. Here is a little promo video for Brian Tyler's upcoming concert with the Philharmonia Orchestra.
  19. No problem, 150 miles is a long old poke and I know how much training and effort it takes to get fit enough (or stay fit enough) for a challenge such as that. I have done the London Bikeathon every year since 2004, a 50 mile bike ride through the streets of London to raise money for the blood cancer charity Bloodwise which is a cause very close to my heart. It's always good fun and last year I cycled with the actor Toby Jones and his daughter for much of the way (his was the voice of Dobby the House Elf in the Harry Potter films).
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