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Train from London to Bletchley Park guidance, please

I'm planning a much-anticipated return to London at the end of August and visiting Bletchley is a must-do, so I'm looking at train websites and need a couple of things cleared up:

Is there a preferred website for buying tickets? I see there's more than one railway, but looks like I'd leave from Euston station. I've been poking around trainline.com but can't tell what time is considered officially off-peak; I plan to travel on Friday, August 31st--leave around 9:30 am, return leave at 5:30 or so since closing time is 5:00. Seems like I can get an open return ticket for any train that's off-peak, but can't tell when that is.

I'm okay with selecting a definite return time, based on other comments I've read in the forums I think I can easily spend 6 hours between Bletchley and the Museum of Computing, having lunch, etc.

Posted by
21535 posts

Try nationalrail.co.uk .

Sorry that I don't know what the off-peak times are (probably different for different routes), but perhaps you'll be able to tell from the NationalRail website.

Posted by
51 posts

We have done this trip. Go to this official site and book your tickets.

http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/

All of the possible trains are listed with their prices and whether they are off-peak.
We pay with credit card, then when we get to England you just put your card in the ticket machine at the station, your tickets are printed and pop out for you. Just make sure that you take that credit card with you to England.

Have a great day out.

Posted by
16883 posts

Off-Peak should be later than 9:30 a.m. on weekdays, with no restriction on weekends.

Posted by
2338 posts

Thanks to all! I checked National Rail and for my date I get a warning that "at present we cannot confirm whether this service will run...", looks like the normally published time-tables are being delayed so I will book within 6 weeks of departure. Dates selected for next week show as confirmed.

Posted by
3755 posts

I suggest you use Google Maps or an English equivalent to sort out the short walk from the train station to the park. When I was there a few years ago the direction signs were unclear. If you walk in the other direction, towards the town centre, you can find a few restaurants and a pub or two for lunch. The museum itself has a simple lunch bar. A highlight of the tour is a demonstration of the massive decoder controls in action. You might be able to find out by e-mail if there is a schedule for these shows.

Posted by
381 posts

Is it necessary to book these tickets ahead of time? We are going in September and sometimes weather is the determining factor as to our plan for the day.

Posted by
26 posts

We love Bletchley Park! We have visited three times both on our own and with family. A few points: When you come out of the train station, turn right and walk a short distance and the Park is on your left. It’s an easy and short walk. When you get to the visitors center, inquire about the walking tour. We really enjoyed it and it’s included in the price. We also enjoyed the Hut 4. That’s where you can get hot and cold food selections. We have had very good meals there. They have everything from soups, salads, sandwiches, and complete meals ( with vegetarian options as well). We usually left Euston station just after 9:30 and arrive about 10:15. We also stayed most of the day and left about 4:30. Enjoy!

Posted by
28478 posts

The first off-peak London Northwestern Railway service from Euston to Bletchley is the 09:24, because you are going against the main flow which is into London. Returning to London can be on any train, again because of the anti-flow.

Posted by
2338 posts

Reporting back to say I just easily booked my train ticket for 8/31 on the London Northwestern Railway, roundtrip $22.00 US. I bought my Bletchley ticket, too and now I'm just counting the days til I leave on 8/29.

Posted by
641 posts

christa, your trip was a few months ago now. I hope it went well, would love to hear about your visit to BP.

This topic was helpful to me. I'm in London for a week or so, and today visited Bletchley Park with no advance ticketing. I went to the ticket kiosks at Euston Station this morning and asked a staff member for help buying a round trip anytime day return ticket to Bletchley for today. He walked me through the kiosk process and it cost me a total of only £17.00. I still haven't figured that one out. Last night here in my hotel room I went online to nationalrail.co.uk, and the price for that ticket was over £38. And although I bought the ticket from a Virgin trains kiosk, it was good on the Northwestern trains which are direct from Euston to Bletchley (the Virgin trains require you to change at Milton Keynes and take a hop back to Bletchley).

I spent about five hours at Bletchley Park, including a nice hot lunch in the Hut 4 cafe. I'm definitely in information overload - but I'm so glad I finally got to BP after a few "maybe next time" decisions on prior UK trips.

Posted by
21535 posts

Suz, I ran into some fare anomalies, too. Sometimes what was available at the station didn't line up with what I had seen online. I never figured out whether it was user error or just intentional fare differences on different sales platforms. At least twice station staffers were able to find a better deal for me than I was expecting, but on one occasion I had to go back to my hotel and book online.

Posted by
4800 posts

Last night here in my hotel room I went online to nationalrail.co.uk, and the price for that ticket was over £38.

That is the price of an anytime day return (£38.70 to be precise). You only need that for trains before 9:15.

Posted by
2338 posts

Suz--Sounds like we both had a wonderful visit to Bletchley, I found it to be one of the easier day trips I've made in my travels thanks to the ease of train travel & proximity of the park to the station. I'm glad I booked in advance because while on the train that Friday there were announcements that the tracks would be closed for repair work that weekend; mine was such a short trip with other pre-planned activities that I wouldn't have gotten to Bletchley. I loved seeing the Huts and touring the Mansion, especially seeing Alan Turing's office, the display on carrier pigeons in the war, the lovely lake with friendly geese and a cheerful cat that spent some time sitting with me, and all the exhibits re life at Bletchley. I've had an interest in WWII for many years, particularly the role of women in the war and the homefront efforts, so it was really pleasing--right down to the great gift shop that lured me in because they were playing the Andrews Sisters. I never did make it to the Museum of Computing.