From London to Singapore in 40 Days: Prologue

Ever since I have thought about this trip, I thought that there was nothing comparable to a grand beginning or ending in Singapore at the Tanjong Pagar Railway Station, somehow blending with the other end of St. Pancras Railway Station yet possessing its unique Asian architecture, culture, and of course, location.

Unfortunately, this is not possible today.

On a personal note, I still felt that this trip would not be complete if I were to forgo the original sections of the railway in Singapore. That would make this trip “from London to Johor Bahru” instead. Journeys are best completed from end to end, or in railway terms, “buffer to buffer”. Lacking the publicly accessible buffer stop in Woodlands, I decided that the southernmost buffer could be of another form of railway.

London to Singapore Prologue 01

Sentosa is an island resort south of mainland Singapore, accessible by a monorail line known as the Sentosa Express. Crossing the Sentosa causeway from HarbourFront (Vivocity), the train travels all the way to the southern beaches of Sentosa.

London to Singapore Prologue 02

This station is aptly known as Beach Station.

London to Singapore Prologue 03

Alighting from the Sentosa Express.

London to Singapore Prologue 04

This buffer stop is located just before the shore, and is the southernmost point you can travel on a train from mainland Singapore.

London to Singapore Prologue 05

The station may not be as grand as Tanjong Pagar, but it is a significant landmark if you wish to travel for record-keeping sake.

London to Singapore Prologue 06

Of course, I will never forget about the grand old dame of Tanjong Pagar Railway Station. A short bus ride away from HarbourFront, I was quite lucky that the gates were open today so I can shoot the facade of the station in its proper manner. I was not allowed inside the premises though, but this is good enough.

London to Singapore Prologue 07

And never forgetting about the once-unknown Bukit Timah Railway Station. This was where I spent much of my time before the railway was shut. Weekends here were definite, sometimes even on weekday afternoons and nights. Much has changed, with trees overgrowing the platforms, the premise back to silence after the hype of the closure, and of course, the easy access from King Albert Park MRT Station. If only the Downtown Line was completed 5 years ago.

London to Singapore Prologue 08

(From left) The remains of the siding, loop line and main line.

London to Singapore Prologue 09

The former station master’s office, now inaccessible even on weekends as it is the security guard’s room now.

I will be departing for London soon. Updates may not be as frequent, subject to SIM card or WiFi availability. Blog posts may also not be properly updated until my trip ends as I will not have any photo editing software during my travels.

This trip may have a few additional names and hashtags from time to time as “From London to Singapore in 40 Days” is a bit long for each post title. Be assured that it is the same trip.

I hope you enjoy reading my updates as much as I will love travelling and posting them. Thank you for your support and stay tuned!

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