3920 Travelling Light by Ploy

An excellent crossword -- although the preamble (and the note identifying York as the site of the 2007 Annual Setters' Dinner) made it fairly clear from the beginning that Ploy's puzzle involved some sort of itinerary, the rest of the journey proved to be both interesting and challenging. Especially notable: the elegant implementation of the scrolling display and the fact that all of the clues had something to do with transportation (which might account for a few instances of fragmentary wordplay (ESLOYNE, ORISON, for example)). Of minor interest: the destination (York) was given at the midpoint of the clue list.

The original contents of the top row, along the corrections to misprints and extra words in clues, combined to spell out "This train stops at Stevenage, Peterborough, Doncaster, York, Darlington, Newcastle, and Edinburgh" -- suggesting that the unbarred top row represented a scrolling display in a railway station (a "Travelling Light" in at least two senses of the phrase). This message then had to scroll through the top row until YORK appeared in such a position that the new letters in the grid produced actual words. The setter's requirement I HAVE TO GET TO YORK (with the first five words following a northward route, intersecting with the O in YORK) had to be highlighted.

Extra words and corrections to misprints are given in boldface type.

ACROSS
9 Lowly Japanese workers returning in bus at eleven (4)
ETAS (buS AT Eleven hidden rev.)
11 There's superior room in a Rolls, Silly! (6)
SOLLAR (A ROLLS anag.)
12 Seaman in coaster left Bilbao finally (5)
MATLO (MAT + L + O (Bilbao finally))
13 US city's tense, and hot! I stick (5)
LATHI (L.A. + T + H + I)
15 Spare wheels and tyres (60 per cent off) for President Steven (7)
PRAESES (SPARE anag. + tyrES)
16 Stretches of Land lacking the radius for people performing turns (4)
ACTS (TRACTS minus T, R)
17 A game's got going in carriage at first causing apparent stress (6)
AGOGIC (A + GO + G, I, C (initial letters))
20 Tore off on boneshaker, ultimately reminiscent of the past (5)
RETRO (R (boneshaker, ultimately) + TORE anag.)
22 Sun's come up, Pete and I must leave a grey-coloured block (6)
SARSEN (S + ARISEN minus I) 23 Like transactions with air staff over cleared land (6)
ASSART (AS + TR (transactions) AS (air staff) rev.)
25 Aircraft's starting to beat up Royal Navy deck (5)
ADORN (A + DO + RN)
27 Tottering American goes to get gas wonderful (6)
GEASON (A GOES anag. + N (nitrogen = gas))
30 Rough by the sound of it, boat journeys increased in price (4)
ROSE (ROWS homophone)
32 Odd bits of veneer on converted deck. In Jersey style? (7)
V-NECKED (VeNeEr + DECK anag.)
34 Tramp? 'E's in the road bypassing edge of Oxford (5)
TREAD (E in T + ROAD minus O)
35 Front on coach maintained for William and Son (5)
CHILD (C + HILD (past tense of hold, as in Shakespeare's The Rape of Lucrece)
36 Pole's going into Hesse, resolving to get snuff caster (6)
SNEESH (N in HESSE anag.)
37 Pet's on the wagon, nursing old whiskey (4)
TOWT (TT around O, W (whiskey = W in the NATO alphabet))
38 Describing some canals, claim cruise turns right (12)
SEMICIRCULAR (CLAIM CRUISE anag. + R)

DOWN 1 Rail worker taking exercise in moving tram (6)
TAMPER (PE in TRAM anag.)
2 All aboard Queen Elizabeth after hour with duke in old harbour (5)
HEARD (H + E(A)R + D)
3 Ships, we hear, in demand darling (4)
SALE (SAIL homophone)
4 In network, a girl moving North to Stellenbosch, maybe (8)
RELEGATE (A GEL rev. in RETE, to Stellenbosch = to relegate)
5 Airline body gets oxygen for one in a jot (4)
IOTA (IATA (International Air Transport Association) with O for A)
6 Steamship covers about one-third of a mile with engineer, and moves through water cleanly (6)
SLICES (SS around LI + CE (civil engineer))
7 More interesting with cheers, I set off on run (7)
TASTIER (TA + I SET anag. + R)
8 Car with missing MOT is nothing new -- appeal to a higher authority? (6)
ORISON (motOR + IS + O + N)
10 Oddly, ferry is "advanced" as well? Not really (4)
SO-SO (RO-RO with odd letters "advanced")
14 Henry Castle has oar I'd broken in style, as seen in locks (6)
HAIRDO (H + OAR ID anag.)
15 One who rates road rage is Batty (6)
GRADER (RD RAGE anag.)
19 Rum resident, perhaps -- changed in deals over river (8)
ISLANDER (IN DEALS anag. + R, ref. the Isle of Rum)
21 Eastern sun -- Ploy loses head (and energy) -- convey to a distance (7)
ESLOYNE (E + S + pLOY + N (and) + E)
23 'Orse can join revamped RAC? Unlike present clue! (6)
ACROSS (RAC anag. + OSS (hoss = horse))
24 Busy din? Not half - one's forsaking steam taxis (6)
SYSTEM (buSY + STEAM minus A)
26 Stranger on back of train -- one making a slight bow (6)
NODDER (N (back of train) + ODDER)
28 In a cutting, street's full of drug clubs (4)
SECT (ST around E (drug), C)
29 A river deposit and there's a suggestion of dhow running late (5)
DELTA (D (suggestion of dhow) + LATE anag.)
31 Tide's got to rise - see old mark? (4)
AESC (SEA rev. + C (see))
33 You may hear "Drive away", dear! (4)
CHOU (SHOO homophone)