STOPPING off in Mongolia on his 4,700-mile rail journey, Peter Wood catches up on the news in Sunderland.
The city councillor is pictured here holding his copy of the Echo at the main railway station in the country’s capital, Ulan Bator.
A long-serving spokesman on transport, Councillor Wood was on something of a busman’s holiday on the Trans-Siberian and Trans-Mongolian railways from Moscow to Beijing.
The journey took him 16 days, stopping to see the sights en route.
The Sunderland season ticket holder also found Premier League football is popular viewing in Mongolia.
Coun Wood, Conservative representative for St. Michael’s ward, said: “While I was having lunch in a restaurant, they were showing highlights of Sunderland’s victory over Chelsea from the end of last season.
“I subsequently discovered Ulan Bator has a branch of the Chelsea Supporters’ Association. The Black Cats have some ground to make up here.”
The historic home of Genghis Khan and Kublai Khan, Mongolia lies in central Asia and is surrounded by Russia and China.
Although it is large in size, it is very sparsely populated, with less than three million people.
Buddhism is the country’s major religion, and its climate is often extreme, plunging to -23C in winter.
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