# Friday, 30 November 2007
A passenger was thrown off a plane because she refused to move her toy crocodile. The metre long toy crocodile was blocking an emergency exit. Ryanair staff asked her to move it but she refused. The flight from Rome to Milan eventually took off but without the woman and her crocodile.

posted on Friday, 30 November 2007 17:17:08 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 27 November 2007
A secret list of post office closures has been put on the internet by mistake. The list was meant to be kept secret until the start of a public consultation next summer but it appeared on the Post Office website last week before being quickly removed. For those who missed here the following post offices are due to close.

The following Post Office branches are proposed for closure in Kent
Approach Road, 63 Approach Road, Margate, CT9 2AP
Bellevue Road, 13 Bellevue Road, Ramsgate, CT11 8LB
Benenden Chest Hospital, Goddards Green Road, Cranbrook, TN17 4AX
Bidborough, 14 Bidborough Ridge, Tunbridge Wells TN3 0XD
Bingham Road, 185 Frindsbury Road, Rochester, ME2 4JN
Brompton, 25 High Street, Brompton, Gillingham, ME7 5AA
Byron Road, 34 Byron Road, Gillingham, ME7 5QH
Canterbury Road, 14-16 Canterbury Road, Whitstable, CT5 4EX
Capel Le Ferne, Capel Le Ferne Village Hall, Lancaster Avenue, Capel Le Ferne, Folkestone, CT18 7LX
Chalkwell, 69 London Road, Sittingbourne, ME10 1NQ
Cliff's End, Cliff's End Village Hall, Foads Lane, Ramsgate CT12 5JH
Dane Road, 55 Upper Dane Road, Margate CT9 2NA
Denton, 4 East Milton Road, Gravesend, DA12 2JL
Duke Of York's School, Guston, Dover, CT15 5DZ
East Street, 85-89 East Street, Sittingbourne, ME10 4BL
Enbrook Valley, 99 Enbrook Valley, Eynsford, Folkestone, CT20 3NE
Eynsford, The Old Forge Tea Rooms, 2 Riverside, Dartford, DA4 0AE
Farningham, 3 High Street, Farningham, Dartford, DA40DG
Gills Green, Station Garage, Hawkhurst, TN18 5EP
Grange Road, 34 Grange Road, Ramsgate, CT11 9LP
Great Mongeham, Mongeham Farm, Deal, CT14 0HB
Hardy Street, 84-86 Hardy Street, Maidstone, ME14 2SJ
Hawkhurst, High Street, Cranbrook,TN18 4AA
Hectorage Road, 82 Goldsmid Road, Tonbridge, TN9 2BY
High Street, 3 High Street, Herne Bay, CT6 5LJ
High Street, 13 High Street, Sevenoaks, TN13 IHZ
Hythe Road, 79 Hythe Road, Ashford, TN24, 8PH
Langton Green, Langton Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN3 0EG
Littlestone, 4 Warren Road, New Romney, TN28 8PN
Longfield Hill, Main Road, Longfield Hill, Dartford, DA3 7AS
Mead Road, 11 Mead Road, Dartford, DA1 2RH
Minnis Road, 137 Minnis Road, Birchington, CT7 9NS
New Bridge, 15 Bench Street, Dover, CT16 1JW
Northgate, 65 Northgate, Canterbury, CT1 1BB
Oaten Hill, 3-4 Oaten Hill, Canterbury, CT1 3HP
Rodmersham Green, 1 St Patricks Row, Sittingbourne, ME9 0PS
Saltwood, The Fountain Stores, Saltwood, Hythe, CT21 4PS
Seabrook Road, 246 Seabrook Road, Hythe, CT21 5RQ
Seal, 23-25 High Street, Seal, Sevenoaks, TN15 0AW
Shipbourne Road, 55 Shipbourne Road, Tonbridge, TN10 3DS
Shorncliffe, 2 Royal Military Avenue, Folkestone, CT20 3EF
Sole Street, The Little Shoppe, Sole Street, Gravesend, DA12 3AX
South Ashford, 108 Beaver Road, Ashford, TN23 7ST
South End, 115 High Street, Edenbridge, TN8 5AX
South Park, 192 Loose Road, Maidstone, ME15 7UF
South Willesborough, 62 Gladstone Road, Ashford, TN24 0BY
St Botolphs, 2 Station Parade, Sevenoaks,TN13 1DL
St Dunstans, 21-23 Whitstable Road, Canterbury, CT2 8DG
St Johns Road, 57 St Johns Road, Tunbridge Wells, TN4 9TP
Station Road, 129 Station Road, Gillingham, ME8 7SP
Station Road, Station Road, Tonbridge, TN12 0QH
Temple Hill, 11 Temple Hill Square, Dartford, DA1 5HY
Tower Hamlets, 14 West Street, Dover, CT17 0DU
Upper Deal, 311 London Road, Deal, CT14 9PP
Westbrook, 101 Canterbury Road, Margate, CT9 5AX
Wilmington, 221 High Road, Dartford, DA2 7BU
Woodnesborough, The Street, Woodnesborough, Sandwich, CT13 0NF
Wrotham Road, 46 Wrotham Road, Gravesend, DA11 0QF

The following 77 Post Office branches are proposed for closure as part of the East Midlands plan:
Abbey Street, 17 Abbey Street, Derby DE22 3SJ
Annesley Road, 101 Annesley Road, Hucknall, Nottingham NG15 7DR
Ashbourne Road, 130 Ashbourne Road, Derby DE22 3AG
Bonsall Hollies Farm, Uppertown, Bonsall Matlock DE4 2AW
Bramcote Hills, 40A Sevenoaks, Crescent, Beeston NG9 3FW
Breadsall, 2 Rectory Lane, Breadsall DE21 5LL
Brook Street, 20a Brook Street, Grantham NG31 6PS
Bunny, Jet Garage, Brobot Petroleum Ltd, Loughborough Road, Bunny NG11 6QT
Carlton Valley , 56 Valley Road, Carlton, Nottingham NG4 1LT
Carnarvon Grove, 240 Huthwaite Road, Sutton-In-Ashfield NG17 2HF
Carr Vale,32 Main Street, Bolsover, Chesterfield S44 6JF
Carrington, 355 Mansfield Road, Carrington Nottingham NG5 2DA
Church Gresley, 35 Market Street, Church Gresley, Swadlincote DE11 9PR
Cobden Street, 34 Cobden Street, Long Eaton, Nottingham NG10 1BP
Colston Bassett, Church Gate, Colston Bassett, Nottingham NG12 3FE
Edensor, The Post Office, Edensor, Bakewell DE45 1PH
Egginton, The School House, Church Road, Egginton, Derby DE65 6HP
Elmfield, 234 Elmton Road, Creswell, Worksop S80 4DZ
Epperstone, Main Street, Epperstone, Nottingham, NG14 6AD
Forest Side, 261 Mansfield Road, Sutton-In-Ashfield NG17 4HG
Gedling, 98 Main Road, Gedling,Nottingham NG4 3HE
Great Hale, 4 High Street, Great Hale, Sleaford NG34 9LE
Heage, The Windmill Inn, 213-215 Park Road, Heage, Derby DE56 2AB
Heage Road, 133 Heage Road, Ripley, Derby DE5 3GG
Higham, Crown Inn, Main Road, Higham DE55 6EH
Hill Avenue, 26 Hill Avenue, Grantham NG31 9BD
Hill Top, 231 Nottingham Road, Eastwood, Nottingham NG16 3GS
Hillstown, 30 Nesbit Street, Bolsover, Chesterfield S44 6LW
Hodthorpe, 137 Queens Road, Hodthorpe, Worksop S80 4UP
Kirk Ireton, Barley Mow, Kirk Ireton , Ashbourne DE6 3JP
Langwith Junction, 8 East Veiw, Langwith Junction, Mansfield NG20 9AA
Laxton Main Street, Laxton, Newark NG22 0NX
Leabrooks, 69 Main Road, Leabrooks, Alfreton DE55 1LA
Mansfield Road, 102 Mansfield Road, Alfreton DE55 7JP
Mansfield Road, 164 Mansfield Road, Derby DE1 3RA
Mansfield Road, 88 Mansfield Road, Heanor DE75 7AQ
Market Place, 16 Market Place, Ashbourne DE6 1ES
Marston Montgomery, 2 Thurvaston Road, Ashbourne DE6 2FF
Matlock Bank, 83 Smedley, Street East, Matlock DE4 3FQ
Melton Road, 95a Melton Road, West Bridgford, Nottingham NG2 6EN
Model Village, 5 Colonade, Shirebrook, Mansfield, NG20 8BL
Moorhall, 12 Moorhall, Bakewell DE45 1FT
New Lenton, 17 Lenton Boulevard, Nottingham NG7 2ET
Newgate Lane, 114 Newgate Lane, Mansfield NG18 2QB
Newlands, 85 Clipstone Road East, Forest Town, Mansfield NG19 0HT
Newton Solney, 16 Main Street, Newton Solney, Burton-On-Trent DE15 0SJ
Normanton-On-Soar, 73 Main Street, Normanton-On-Soar LE12 5HB
Nottingham Road, 111 Nottingham Road, Alfreton, Derby DE55 7GR
Nottingham Road, 114 Nottingham Road, Long Eaton, Nottingham NG10 2BZ
Nottingham Road, 123 Nottingham Road, Mansfield NG18 4AJ
Nuthall, 1 Kimberley Road, Nuthall, Nottingham NG16 1DA
Old Somerby, The Old School, Old Somerby, Grantham NG33 4AB
Ollerton, Saville House, Station Road, Ollerton, Newark NG22 9BN
Openwoodgate, 4 Kilburn Lane, Openwoodgate, Belper DE56 0SF
Pear Tree, 157-159 St Thomas, Road, Pear Tree, Derby DE23 8RH
Red Hill, 69 Red Hill Road, Arnold, Nottingham NG5 8GX
Roper Avenue, 113 Roper Avenue, Heanor DE75 7DA
Ryhall Road, 60 Ryhall Road, Stamford PE9 1UF
Rylands, 44 Meadow Road, Beeston NG9 1JT
Shelton Lock, 211 Derby Road, Chellaston, Derby DE73 5SE
Shuttlewood, 72 Chesterfield Road, Shuttlewood, Chesterfield S44 6QT
Sneinton Dale, 197 Sneinton Dale, Nottingham NG2 4HU
South Wingfield, 11 Inns Lane, South Wingfield, Alfreton DE55 7LW
Stanfree, 12 Clowne Road, Chesterfield S44 6AW
Stanton By Dale, School House, Stanton By Dale, Ilkeston DE7 4QJ
Starkholmes, 133 Starkholmes, Road Matlock E4 5JA
Stirling Road, 6 Stirling Road Stamford, PE9 2XG
The Harlequin, 50 Grantham Road, Radcliffe On Trent, Nottingham NG12 2HS
Uffington, Croft Farm, Uffington, Stamford PE9 4SX
Warsop Road, 7 Warsop Road, Mansfield Woodhouse, Mansfield NG19 9LE
Western Valley, 304-306 Valley Road, Nottingham NG5 1HW
Westhouses, 1 Alfreton Road, Westhouses, Alfreton DE55 5AH
Westville, The Wyvern Centre, Watnall Road, Nottingham NG15 7LD
Wilmorton, 707 London Road, Derby DE24 8UQ
Wolds Drive, 77 Wolds Drive, Keyworth, Nottingham NG12 5FS
Wollaton Avenue, 4 Wollaton Avenue, Gedling NG4 4HX
Woodland Grove, 720/722 Mansfield Road, Woodthorpe, Nottingham NG5 3FW

The following 11 branches are proposed for closure and replacement by an 'outreach solution'- most likely a touring van.
Anwick, 1a River Lane, Anwick, Sleaford NG34 9SP
Allington, The Green, Allington, Grantham NG32 2EA
Barkston, 5 Church Street, Barkston, Grantham NG32 2NB
Brant Broughton, The Forge, High Street, Brant Broughton , Lincoln LN5 0SL
Castle Bytham, 19-21 Pinfold Road, Castle Bytham Grantham NG33 4RG
Folkingham, The Old School, 7 Market Place, Folkingham, Sleaford NG34 0SE
Harby Low Street, Harby, Newark NG23 7EA
Kinoulton, Hall Lane, Kinoulton, Nottingham NG12 3EF
Rippingale, 5 Middle Street, Rippingale, Bourne PE10 0SU
South Witham, 14 High Street, South Witham, Grantham NG33 5QB
Woolsthorpe, Main Street, Woolsthorpe, Grantham NG32 1LY

The following 45 Post Office branches are proposed for closure as part of the East Yorkshire, Bassetlaw and North Lincolnshire plan:
Adwick-Le –Street 2 Church Lane Adwick-Le-Street Doncaster DN6 7AQ
Ashby Cum Fenby Chapel Lane Ashby Cum Fenby Grimsby DN37 0QT
Bailgate 90 Bailgate Lincoln LN1 3AE
Balby 296 Balby Road Balby Doncaster DN4 0QF
Bennetthorpe 2b Bennetthorpe Doncaster DN2 6AD
Bole 6 South Street Bole Retford DN22 9EJ
Brackenborough Road 8 Brackenborough Road Louth LN11 0AE
Brocklesby Main Road Grimsby DN41 8PP
Burringham Road 78 Burringham Road Scunthorpe DN17 2DE
Cuckney 5 Ten Row Cuckney Mansfield NG20 9LY
East Ashby 46 High Street Ashby Scunthorpe DN16 2ND
Fishlake Main Street Fishlake Doncaster DN7 5JH
Fleetgate 40/42 Newport Barton-Upon-Humber DN18 5QG
Foggathorpe 8 Station Road Foggathorpe Selby YO8 6PU
Golf Road 47 Golf Road Mablethorpe LN12 1LS
Grimoldby 34 Tinkle Street, Grimoldby Louth LN11 8SW
Grovehill Road 165 Grovehill Road Beverley HU17 0ET
Habrough The Stables, Station Hotel Habrough DN40 3AP
Hatfield Woodhouse Main Street Hatfield Woodhouse Doncaster DN7 6NF
Hawthorn Avenue 43 Hawthorn Avenue Hull HU3 5PA
Hollym Silver Leys, North, Leys Road, Hollym Withernsea HU19 2QN
Humberstone Road 84 Humberstone Road Grimsby DN32 8AZ
Hundleby 30 Main Road Hundleby Spilsby PE23 5LS
Hyde Park 55 Carr House Road Doncaster DN1 2BY
Kirk Ella 1 Packman Lane Kirk Ella Hull HU10 7TH
Lambert Road 65 Lambert Road Grimsby DN32 0NW
Mappleton Cliff Lane Mappleton Hornsea HU18 1XX
Marfleet 993 Hedon Road Marfleet Hull HU9 5QP
Markby Sutton Road Markby Alford LN13 9QJ
New Hexthorpe 70 Hexthorpe Doncaster DN4 0AJ
Newland 504 Beverley Road Hull HU5 1NA
Newmarket 161 Newmarket Louth LN11 9EJ
Northfield 111-113 King Edward Road, Thorne Doncaster DN8 4DD
Northorpe 3/5 Manor Road Northorpe Gainsborough DN21 4AA
Princes Avenue 75 Princes Avenue Hull HU5 3QU
Raines Avenue 361 Carlton Road Worksop S81 7PQ
Skidby c/o Methodist Church Main Street Skidby Cottingham HU16 5TH
South Somercotes South Somercotes Louth LN11 7BH
Spring Bank 153 Spring Bank Hull HU3 1BN
St Peters At Gowts 85 High Street Lincoln LN5 7QW Lincoln
Trinity Street 142 Trinity Street Gainsborough DN21 1JD
Warsop Vale Carter Lane Warsop Vale Mansfield NG20 8XE
Welton 24 Church Street Welton Brough HU15 1NH
West Rasen West Rasen Market Rasen LN8 3LS
Westfield Avenue 136-138 Pasture Road Goole DN14 6HF

The following 24 branches are proposed for replacement by an 'outreach solution - most likely a touring van:
Belchford Rimmer House Horncastle LN9 6LQ
Blyton 64 High Street Gainsborough DN21 3LA
Corringham A H Hardwick & Sons (Butchers) 7 Middle Street Corringham Gainsborough DN21 5QT
Eastoft High Street Eastoft Scunthorpe DN17 4PA
Faldingworth High Street Faldingworth Lincoln LN8 3SE
Hagworthingham Main Road Hagworthingham Spilsby PE23 4NA
Haltham Haltham Garage Main Road, Haltham Horncastle LN9 6JQ
Huttoft Alford Road Huttoft Alford LN13 9RB
Ingham 24 The Green Ingham Lincoln LN1 2XT
Langworth Station Road Langworth Lincoln LN3 5BB
Little Steeping Main Road Spilsby PE23 5BL
Lockington School Farm Front Street Lockington Driffield YO25 9SH
Maltby-Le-Marsh Main Road Maltby-Le-Marsh Alford LN13 0JP
New Leake Boston Road Eastville Boston PE22 8LJ
North Kelsey North Kelsey Market Rasen LN7 6EB
North Newbald The Green North Newbald York YO43 4SA
Rampton The Green Adjacent Eyre Arms (Public House), Rampton Retford DN22 0HR
Reedness Main Street Reedness Goole DN14 8ET
Scampton RAF Station Scampton RAF Camp Scampton Lincoln LN1 2TR
Tealby Tealby Village Hall Outbuilding,Tennyson Eyncourt Memorial Hall Tealby Market Rasen LN8 3XU
Upton 1 High Street Upton Gainsborough DN21 5NL
Welton Le Marsh Village PO Main Road Spilsby PE23 5TA
West Butterwick15 West Street West Butterwick Scunthorpe DN17 3JZ
Wroot High Street Wroot Doncaster DN9

posted on Tuesday, 27 November 2007 16:56:31 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Airport workers in Paphos, Cyprus walked out last weekend over what they called “degrading security checks”. The strike lasted two hours and stranded around 1,000 passengers in Paphos.

posted on Tuesday, 27 November 2007 11:39:04 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, 26 November 2007
BAA staff at Gatwick and Heathrow are to be balloted on a strike within the next few weeks. The proposed strike action is in protest at a plan to stop new staff joining the final salary pension scheme from 1 December. A strike would see BAA airports closed from 27 December which would lead to chaos during the New Year travel period.

posted on Monday, 26 November 2007 13:30:47 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, 25 November 2007

blogoftheweek_thumb This weeks travel blog of the week is carbonneutraltourism.co.uk written by Richard Linington. The blog contains information on leisure and tourism with a particular focus on environmental issues. With so much in the news recently about reducing your carbon footprint this blog offers a lot of useful articles about reducing carbon emissions and offsetting carbon that is produced.

hotelphotogd2One of the most recent articles highlights the TYF Eco Hotel in Wales. The hotel has been working hard to reduce its energy use. All carbon dioxide emissions produced by the hotel are now offset through the support of renewable energy projects in other parts of the world. The hotel also has an ethical purchasing policy and serves organic and local food and drink. In fact nearly all the food and drink served at the hotel is organic. They also reuse and recycle as much waste as possible and even compost all food waste.

Another article looks at Eurostar and how they are addressing the green concerns of their passengers. Travelling by Eurostar is already 10 times greener than flying but Eurostar are trying to minimise their impact on the environment even more. Some initiatives include fitting new controls for train heating, lighting and air conditioning that will reduce power consumption, making better use of train capacity and finding cleaner energy supplies. These are just a few of the articles on this blog but its well worth a read for anyone who wants tips on greener travel.

posted on Sunday, 25 November 2007 15:31:12 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
Ministers have delayed the closure of hundreds of post office until after next year’s local elections. Around 2500 branches are to shut by the end of 2008 but the decisions on which ones are to close have not been made yet. Many people will now not find out whether their local post office is to close until after the polls. It seems rather cynical to me, if they are proposing the freeze until after the polls, then they can obviously see that the local post offices are needed. It seems whilst they benefit the government they will keep them open and once they have been voted back in, then the closures will take place.

posted on Sunday, 25 November 2007 13:35:11 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
If you are interested in cooking you might want to book ticket for The France Show 2008 which runs from the 18th to the 20th of January. The show will feature Jean-Christophe Novelli who will give three cookery demonstrations as well as some other well know chefs. The following press release has been issued giving details about the show. Tickets are free is you register before hand or £8 on the day.

Press Release
Jean-Christophe Novelli, Britain's favourite French Chef, will be one of the star attractions at The France Show 2008, which runs at London's Olympia from 18-20 January.

He will be conducting three live cookery demonstrations each day at the show with his "mobile" Novelli Academy Cookery School, revealing the secrets that have made him one of the most celebrated Chefs in Britain.

The Novelli master classes will be among the main highlights of an already mouth-watering line-up for the Olympia show, which is expected to attract30,000 visitors. It is being organised by Archant Life, publisher of the UK's three leading French lifestyle magazines - France, Living France and French Property News.

Miller Hogg, Regional Managing Director of Archant Life France, said: "We have had a wonderful response to the France Show so far from the public andare extremely excited about working with one of the world's greatest Chefs. For anyone with a love of French food, watching Jean-Christophe Novelli inaction is a must."

Jean-Christophe, who started work at the age of 14 as a baker in his hometown of Arras came to Britain in 1984. He is a Michelin and 5AA Rosette award winning Chef, whose attributes include AA Chef's Chef of the Year, European Chef of the Year finalist representing Great Britain and the prestigious Egon Ronay Desert of the Year. He won Restaurant of the Year on numerous occasions and many other awards for culinary excellence.

In 2005 Jean-Christophe established the Novelli Academy, which was voted among the 'Top 25 Cookery Schools in the World' within three months and offers a diverse range of courses to suit aspiring cooks of all levels. A year ago he branched out again to open his first gastro pub, 'A Touch of Novelli' at The White Horse in Harpenden.

During 2007 Jean-Christophe launched Novelli Wines - "I have always been as passionate about wine as I am about food. As a chef, I know that if you serve the right wine with the right food you can turn a good meal into a truly great one. There is a wealth of small producers in France creating wonderful, and affordable, wines. The France Show is all about sharing and appreciating everything that France can offer."

Jean-Christophe's new recipe book "Everyday Novelli" will be available from1 February 2008, from Headline Publishing, and advance copies can be ordered at the show.

The Novelli Food Theatre will be one of the main attractions at the France Show offering demonstrations of cookery to suit all palates. There will be six cookery demonstrations each day, three by Novelli, two by his protégé, Steven Kitchen and one by Franck Raymond, the head Chef of London's oldest French restaurant, Mon Plaisir.

Other highlights of the France Show 2008 include a huge property zone, London's largest French market and an extensive holiday travel fair, as well as insights into French culture, language and lifestyle.

Visitors who pre-register can obtain free tickets or else pay £8 at the door on the day. For your free tickets and further information about the France Show, visit the official website at www.thefranceshow.com

posted on Sunday, 25 November 2007 13:32:19 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, 24 November 2007
Further to my earlier post on BA flying empty planes on some routes, it appears the airlines are likely to face a crackdown on this practice. The Treasury and the Department for Transport are considering levying new environmental taxes on airlines that continue to fly empty planes. BA has already admitted to flying at least one empty plane a day across the Atlantic because of a shortage of cabin crews.

posted on Saturday, 24 November 2007 13:00:11 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, 23 November 2007
I read this article the other day that suggests the government is likely to approve a new runway at Heathrow. If it does go ahead it will mean an increase in the volume of flights from 480,000 to 720,000 by 2020 with the number of passengers rising from 60 million a year to 100 million. Whilst this might be good news for the Britain’s economy it is certainly bad new for the residents who currently live around Heathrow Airport, many of whom already have to put up with unacceptable levels of noise. A consultation will take place to look at the environmental issue and specifically air quality and noise. Despite the fact that this expansion will affect around 50 towns and villages around the airport, I suspect the quality of life of ordinary people is likely to be ignored.

posted on Friday, 23 November 2007 11:53:12 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, 22 November 2007
If you have ever had your luggage lost at the airport this article might not come as a surprise. An enquiry has been mounted at Stansted Airport to investigate the extent of thefts from passenger’s luggage. 22 baggage handlers were arrested between December 2006 and July 2007 in connection with baggage theft after a whistleblower alerted the BBC to the extent of the problem. Police officers concealed hidden cameras around the airport and baggage handlers were caught hiding jewellery, watched and i-pods inside their steel toe-capped boot so they could get them out past security scanners.

posted on Thursday, 22 November 2007 10:54:57 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, 21 November 2007
Under new measures announced by Gordon Brown, rail passengers could face having their baggage screened. He aims to bring in measures such as vehicle exclusion zones and blast resistant buildings in order to improve security at railway stations, airport terminals and other sensitive locations. Baggage screening is also likely to be brought in at large railway stations.

posted on Wednesday, 21 November 2007 11:24:07 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 20 November 2007
British Airways have been flying empty planes on some routes because they have no cabin crew to staff them. In the last two weeks empty planes have flown between Britain, Canada and the US. BA said the practice is extremely rare and only occurs when there is no cabin crew available for the flights. He also said that it is better to fly empty planes one way if the return leg is full rather than the cancel both legs. In a time when the phrase carbon footprint is being used daily, flying empty planes seems ridiculous.

posted on Tuesday, 20 November 2007 10:21:43 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, 19 November 2007

blogoftheweek Elliott is another one of those blogs that champions the cause of the poorly treated traveller. Seen as one of America's top travel ombudsmen, his blog is full of useful advice and warnings about scams. If you've been unfairly treated by the travel industry and don't know where to turn, Elliott is probably your knight in shining armor.

One post I found of particular interest is about rental car scams, car rental companies are becoming more an more innovative in adding all kinds of hidden fees to their rates. From charging you for a full tank of fuel when the meter isn't exactly on F down to even charging you for the disposal of old tires! Elliott says the best way to avoid these fees is to play the car rental companies at their own game. Read their terms and conditions very carefully, stick to them and argue about any fee that is not disclosed on your rate quote.

posted on Monday, 19 November 2007 12:31:30 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, 18 November 2007
Baggage rules are likely to be eased from January 2008 as the one bag rule for hand luggage is likely to be relaxed. Airports will need to show that their security procedures meet government standards. Once they have done this, passengers will then be able to take more than one bag into the cabin. Restrictions on carrying liquids are likely to stay in place. There will also be limits on the size of hand luggage. The dimensions of hand luggage must not exceed 56cm x 45cm x 25cm (22in x 17.7in x 9.8in approx), including wheels, handles and side pockets.

posted on Sunday, 18 November 2007 12:21:40 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, 17 November 2007
A study carried out by the European Commission has found that around 200 European airline websites are misleading. The main problems are that they fail to show all the taxes and charges when advertising their prices. The Commission has not named any of the airlines involved in the study, in order to give them time to improve their services. However, if they do not improve it could force misleading websites to close.

posted on Saturday, 17 November 2007 13:45:13 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, 16 November 2007
The Eurostar service has now stopped running out of Waterloo International and now leaves from St Pancras. The first service from St Pancras left at 1103 GMT on Wednesday and arrived in Paris just over two hours later at 1317 GMT. The new route has cut journey times to Paris by around 20 minutes making the average journey take around two hours and fifteen minutes.

posted on Friday, 16 November 2007 10:23:42 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, 15 November 2007
There is likely to be disruption to Air Lingus flights next Tuesday and Friday as staff are due to strike. The trade union said that new employment contracts meant staff would be forced to work more hours for less money. If the strike goes ahead it will affect Air Lingus ground staff.

posted on Thursday, 15 November 2007 13:32:18 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, 14 November 2007
British Airways customers will see another rise in the cost of their tickets after BA raised it fuel surcharges for the third time this year. The rise is due to record oil prices meaning oil is currently at around $100 a barrel. Fuel surcharges for short-haul flights will increase from £4 to £20 and on flights longer than nine hours the charge will increase from £30 to £116. Long haul flights of less than nine hours, will also increase from £20 to £96.

posted on Wednesday, 14 November 2007 13:41:57 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 13 November 2007
Some Australian health experts have suggested that obese airline passengers should start paying a fat tax to cover the cost of transporting their excess weight. The tax would be determined in the same way as excess baggage with customers paying per extra kilo. The calls to introduce the tax come as obesity rates and fuel prices have recently seen a huge rise in Australia. The new proposals are controversial with many people saying it discriminates against people with weight problems.

posted on Tuesday, 13 November 2007 15:26:02 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, 12 November 2007
Following a long battle Rutland will now be recognised as a separate postal county. Rutland is England’s smallest county but until now has been listed in the Royal Mail database as having an address in Leicestershire. Rutland measures only 18 mile long and 17 miles across and contains two towns, Oakham and Uppingham.

posted on Monday, 12 November 2007 16:58:08 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, 11 November 2007

blogoftheweek_thumb This week's travel blog of the week is Old World Wandering London to Shanghai by land. It is written by Claire van den Heever and Iain Manley and follows their journey from London to China through Western Europe, the Middle East, India and South East Asia. The most recent posts follow their progress through India. One recent post describes the not so luxurious journey on a train in third class where although you do get a seat (unlike here in the UK) you do have to sit crossed legged on a luggage rack.

Backwaters 1

The same post also describes how the local ladies make strong ropes out of coconut fibre by twisting them together before attaching them to a spinning wheel. Another thing that I found really interesting was the way that people get around needing an alcohol license which is apparently a rarity on the island. Beer is served in a teapot to disguise it and if a policeman should come to investigate they are offered an incentive to turn a blind eye.

Another interesting post which is well worth a read describes a ride on the typical Indian bus which the author describes as being "made of metal sheets, generously dented". The bus has no set fare, that must be negotiated with the conductor. It also has no set capacity. This blog contains a wealth of information and stunning pictures. It also includes a useful map that charts their progress so far and shows how far they still have to go.

posted on Sunday, 11 November 2007 18:18:20 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [1] Trackback
# Friday, 09 November 2007
Around 100 people turned out to protest outside the Crown Post Office in Trafalgar Square yesterday. The protest was at the proposed closure privatization of 85 Crown post offices and the closure of 2,500 others. It was attended by the CWU and the National Pensioners Convention and was aimed at highlighting the fact that in many towns disabled and elderly people will no longer be able to access facilities which they currently rely upon.

posted on Friday, 09 November 2007 11:20:03 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Wednesday, 07 November 2007
Royal Mail has announced plans to close another 42 post offices across Merseyside and Cheshire. A six week consultation process is now under way that will enable people to give their views on the proposed closures. You can see a full list of the planned closures here.

posted on Wednesday, 07 November 2007 16:16:05 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Tuesday, 06 November 2007
PC2Paper users can now view and download invoices showing all of their monthly transactions. This new feature can be accessed from the left hand menu after you have logged into your account. We have added the feature so that customers can download a full record of their past transactions and keep track on their monthly spend.

posted on Tuesday, 06 November 2007 15:02:03 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback

blogoftheweek This weeks Travel Blog of the week is Travel Rants, its editor Darren Cronian was inspired to start this blog after a nightmare booking experience with a high street travel agency. It appears that from then on Travels Rants has grown into a popular destination for travel consumers to rant about their travel experiences and to find advice and guides on traveling.

One article I found particularly interesting was how Travel Agents were responsible for airlines charging such extortionate fees for changing the names on travel tickets.  According to the article Travel Agencies used to buy the tickets cheap when they were first released and hold onto them until near departure when they would greatly increase in value and sell them on at a greater profit.

posted on Tuesday, 06 November 2007 00:41:49 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Monday, 05 November 2007
Ryanair have been given a fifth ultimatum for breaching advertising standards for the fifth time this year. The airline has been accused of misleading the public and undermining advertising rules vu overcharging Ryanair passengers who book with them rather than with the carrier direct.

posted on Monday, 05 November 2007 14:28:48 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Sunday, 04 November 2007
Air South West has announced it will double the number of destinations it flies to. They currently operate from Plymouth Airport flying to Gatwick, Manchester, Leeds Bradford and Bristol and Jersey. From next April this list will be extended to include Newcastle, Glasgow, Dublin and Cork. Flights to Chambery in France will start the following December.
posted on Sunday, 04 November 2007 14:30:14 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Saturday, 03 November 2007
Ryanair has started new services from George Best City Airport. The airline will now operate flights to London Stansted, Liverpool, the East Midlands and Glasgow and Prestwick. They expect to carry around 200,000 passengers on these new routes every year.

posted on Saturday, 03 November 2007 13:14:14 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Friday, 02 November 2007
Royal Mail has ended Sunday collections in order to cut costs. Although most mail boxes do not have a Sunday collection a small proportion of boxes mainly outside main post offices did have a Sunday collection. Royal Mail have said that the demand for Sunday collections is limited and that it costs four times as much to handle those letters as it does letters posted on other days of the week.

posted on Friday, 02 November 2007 10:52:56 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
# Thursday, 01 November 2007
British Airways have stopped flights between Britain and Zimbabwe. The final flight landed on Sunday. BA has stopped the service because they say it has become uneconomic.

posted on Thursday, 01 November 2007 14:03:26 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback
I came across this website that offers a directory of lodging accommodation within the US and Europe. They are an independent online booking agency so offer a number of alternative hotels that you won’t find on some of the more mainstream holiday engines. They cover a variety of destinations mainly in the US including Vermont Lodging ideal for visiting the USA’s third largest ski resort. Vermont is on the Catamount Trail and holds the record for being the longest cross country ski trail in America.

If you fancy taking in the sights of Virginia they also cover Virginia Lodging. This area is great for beach lovers and you can enjoy fishing, swimming and boating. It is also well placed for the mountains and has over 540 miles of hiking trails. If you fancy something a bit different you might want to look a Connecticut Lodging. Connecticut is home to a variety of craft and antique shops. There is also a wine trail that includes fifteen vineyards and takes two days to complete.

They don’t just offer a directory of accommodation in the US. There are also lodgings available in Canada, Germany and the United Kingdom as well as many other destinations. The prices are not bad either with a room in London staring at a little over $92.

posted on Thursday, 01 November 2007 13:59:32 (GMT Standard Time, UTC+00:00)  #    Comments [0] Trackback