Chris Heathcote: how far could I get from London by train for a tenner? Or twenty quid?

Over 6 months ago, a question came to mind: how far could I get from London for a tenner? Or twenty quid? Where by going I generally mean by train. And at the weekend, as I’m working at an occupation requiring a fixed number of hours a day. And, crucially for the state of the British train system, where you could just turn up and go. No prebooking, no advances. Just me and a cheap day return.

Well, this is a hard problem. Current travel sites generally expect you to put in where you’re travelling to and from. This is a different kind of question.

The kind of question you want to stick on a map.

via Chris Heathcote: anti-mega: turn up and go.


This kind of exploration and re-imagining of public data is always interesting, especially when it helps to explain (or perhaps even confuse further) something as complex as Britain’s railway ticketing system.

Kudos to people like Chris – they make the kind of things that I’d love to know how to make, and then make them available to anyone, with all datasets and processes explained carefully. This actually increases the chances of people like me one day learning how to make stuff like this. Excellent work all round. Oh and that map is really pretty – apart from all the red.

PS: Thanks, once again, to Matthew Culledmane and his excellent newsletter, Etcetera, for bringing this to my attention. The latest issue also contains other gems like how to make underlined links look proper nice across various web browsers, along with other things to tickle the eyes and brain.