January 20, 2014 at 2:48 pm #6594
Husband are ready to put our house on the market and move out of London but had hoped I might find a job that would narrow our search area. I’m finding it difficult finding the right kind of job with the right hours at the moment, so we think we’ve come up with a way that I could continue to work in my current job in Wimbledon.
Can anyone offer any advice on the South West trainline to London? Is it standing room only from Salisbury and the stations from there up to Andover?
Has anyone done it?
Is it awful?
I’d be doing a very early morning commute on a Monday and then back late on Tuesday and then maybe a late morning and back early afternoon on a Wednesday.
It’s just one option for us and I was hoping someone might know.January 20, 2014 at 5:17 pm #6598
message from a commuter
The trains from Salisbury are absolutely fine and generally pretty efficient. You’ll be fine for a seat on the way to work, but can sometimes be a little tight on the way home. Note that not all trains stop at Clapham Junction (in either direction) which may be a bit limiting if you need to travel to and from Wimbledon.January 20, 2014 at 9:41 pm #6603
Thankyou. I didn’t realise that.January 22, 2014 at 1:08 pm #6612
Hi Belinda. You’ve identified a common issue here – jobs are not as plentiful as they are in London and particularly for those with children, finding a job that works around their hours is very tricky indeed. It’s therefore a good idea to at least initially continue with a secure job in London.
Commuting-wise, I can’t really help you with the Salisbury line specifically (our nearest station is Newbury) but as a general point, I’d really urge you to ‘try before you buy’ if you can. Some people love commuting; for others, like my husband, who had to travel to and from London every day, he hated it. Some lines are more reliable than others and generally, the further out from London you are the better chance you have of finding a seat – who wants to stand for an hour before starting a day’s work? Also, even the most reliable train company (and they do seem to vary wildly on this) is not infallible and leaves on the line, snow on the line, severe wind and rain as well as strikes can stop the trains entirely and leave you either stranded in London or unable to get to work. I appreciate that these are extreme scenarios and I would hate to put you off moving to the country, which I love (also, it’s my job to help people move here – http://www.moveoutoflondon.com) but you must really research the commute as that might be what makes or breaks your move to your idyllic country cottage.
Hope that’s vaguely helpful – it would be great if some commuters could post their experiences to help you…January 22, 2014 at 5:43 pm #6613
My husband commutes from Whitchurch which is about 3 /4 stops after Salisbury going to London and I never hear him say that he hasn’t got a seat and I think I would hear a complaint if he had to stand…… You should be ok, just tiring. I would also check station car parking that is becoming a bit of an issue round here but might be ok further down the line.January 22, 2014 at 8:46 pm #6616
Thanks Henrietta and Lizzie. That is really helpful. If the train has spare seats at Whitchurch then it should be ok further down the line too.January 27, 2014 at 6:45 pm #6666
My husband commutes from Grateley (London bound stop after Salisbury) every day, and I’m pretty sure that from Andover onwards in the morning it is virtually impossible to get a seat until Woking or Basingstoke. Salisbury is just that much further along that it makes it feel like a longer commute, so I am told by friends that do it. I know commuting is very tiring – one piece of advice someone gave us is to make it into a positive seeing as you HAVE to do it every day – read a book, watch a film etc.January 28, 2014 at 8:54 pm #6684
Thank you. That’s helpful. I didn’t realise Andover would be so busy on the train.February 5, 2014 at 3:45 pm #6745
Getting a seat depends very much on the time of day you are commuting (as does getting a space in the car park). My husband has commuted for 15 years and has always driven 40 minutes up the track to Basingstoke (we live 10 minutes from Grateley) because that is where the London train line splits – half go to Portsmouth and half to Exeter. Almost all of the Basingstoke trains stop at Clapham Junction and there are trains to and from London every 8 minutes or so in the rush hour, so if you miss one you don’t have long to wait for the next. If you miss a train to Grateley, you will have to wait an hour. Most people complain about the commute (second only to the weather!) but it is one of the compromises you make for living in such a lovely part of the country – and you will make friends on the train too! Don’t let it put you off!February 10, 2014 at 9:33 pm #6780
Hi, the Salisbury line to Clapham/Waterloo is easy to get a seat anywhere south of Whitchurch before 7:40 in the morning. My husband travels to work in Wimbledon every day and its a struggle but worth it as its better than it taking 45mins to get home to Fulham (let’s say). There is a big group of friendly like minded souls that travel and it is very social …south of Overton! Travelling back is a bit of hit and miss. There is a 16:57 from Clapham or 18:27 so quite a big gap, otherwise go back into Waterloo and get a :50 or :20 train….good luck with the move, we haven’t looked backFebruary 11, 2014 at 8:25 am #6786
Thank you Georgie. Interesting that your husband is prepared to drive all that way. Clearly Grateley isn’t the ideal train station I thought it was.February 11, 2014 at 8:27 am #6787
Hi cewafswb – thank you for replying. So nice to hear of someone else making the commute to Wimbledon. Can I ask what station he commutes from and approximately what time? It will be an early rise for me on these days as I need to pack my hours in where I can.February 27, 2014 at 7:16 pm #6893
Hi Belinda Just one point about trainlines around here – the car parking, which is becoming a serious issue. Grately much expanded their car park a few years ago, but my husband regularly has to travel as far as Basingstoke to get the car parked in the mornings. If you want to travel in the middle of the day – forget it – I have several times ‘chased’ the train from Grately/Andover/Whitchurch and then ended up parking with a cousin who lived near Brookwood and going in that way. If you were thinking of a house actually in (or very close to) Grately, then fine – take a bike or walk.March 18, 2014 at 2:41 pm #7068
We moved to Hampshire in mid Dec, my husband’s offices are between CJ & Vauxhall, he drives to Basingstoke & gets the 06.51 going in & the 17.20 coming home. I’m in London for work once a week & travel in a bit later. Parking is plentiful at Basingstoke station & lots of trains so well served. We looked in the Hampshire/Berkshire area for quite a while & narrowed our search down to 15 mins drive from Basingstoke as the trains were so much better & parking wasn’t anissue. Good luck & it’s def worth the move. We love it after 20 years in London.March 21, 2014 at 8:17 pm #7145
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