Anjodi, cruising along the Canal du Midi, painting by Stanley Rose


Hello,

Welcome to the September edition of the Lock-keeper.

This month in the lock-keeper, we have a delightful article from Lynn Underwood about her wonderful cruise on board the Scottish Highlander. We highlight the Scottish Highlander's fabulous Christmas cruise and why not follow that with a New Year cruise aboard the luxurious Magna Carta as it sails majestically along the Royal River Thames.

We then focus on the spectacularly beautiful scenery of Alsace, Burgundy and Champagne through which many of our barges cruise.

We announce the winners of our August Burgundy wines competition and for our September competition we offer you the chance to win a copy of a stunning book, Spectacular Scotland by James Gracie.

Then we reveal how to have the best of times in Burgundy aboard the L'Art De Vivre and showcase Loch Lomond's new Cessna Seaplane which offers an exciting alternative to guests cruising on the Scottish Highlander.

We also have news of a highland feast and the usual round up of travel news.

So plenty of good, and hopefully interesting content for you this month...

I look forward to hearing from you, and seeing you at our website, where you can find out all about GoBarging and keep up to date with the latest news as it breaks....


best regards,

Derek Banks, Chairman


Derek Banks - Chairman and Barge skipper

in this issue:

Scotland the brave.and beautiful!

Christmas Cruise

New Year Cruise

Easy as ABC

Competitions

Barging in Burgundy

Cessna Seaplane

Cruise News

back issues:

Archive

April 07

May 07

June 07

July 07

August 07

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www.gobarging.com



Scotland the brave..and beautiful!

Scottish Highlander

These were the words of Lynn Underhill after cruising for 6 nights on the Scottish Highlander. She clearly thoroughly enjoyed the experience, but we'll let her tell you in her own words.

visit Scottish highlanderWe began our barge cruise in Inverness where we were met by our tour guide, Anthony. My husband, myself and five other passengers were transferred by private coach to Dochgarroch to board the Scottish Highlander for our 6 night cruise on the Caledonian Canal to Banavie.

We were greeted by our Captain, Dan, John the Chef, our delightful hostess Davina and welcomed on board with champagne and traditional Scottish hor d'oeuvres before being escorted to our cabins.

Each cabin was characteristically decorated with tartan plaids, accommodated 2 single beds that could be configured as a king bed, nightstand, 2 large functional windows, a small armoire with several shelves and drawers for additional storage under the bed.

The en suite bathroom was a miniature version of an upscale hotel, including an enclosed shower and heated towel rack. It was very impressive in the space available. Davina would keep our cabin 'ship-shape' each day as well as providing fresh towels and replenishing the candy dish.

After unpacking, we headed back to the lounge where each evening before dinner our captain would provide a brief outline of the agenda for the following day.

It was sometimes difficult to be attentive during this time as the aromas emanating from the galley were most distracting. One could only imagine what delights would soon be served. We were never disappointed.

Chef prepared gastronomical feasts at midday and sumptuous 4 course evening meals of meat (venison, lamb, beef) or fish (haddock, salmon) , fresh vegetables and fruit all purchased at the local shops. Wines, both red and white were picked to compliment each meal and a selection of regional cheeses to finish. We had the opportunity of taking an evening walk after dinner or relaxing in the lounge on one of the leather clad sofas or wing back chairs where we could choose to sip a brandy or taste one of the single malts available from the well stocked bar before retiring for the night.

It did not take long to fall into the routine of life on the barge. Hearty made to order breakfasts each morning as we started our journey on the canal making our way to the next loch.

The first full day on board we were escorted to Culloden, the famous 13th century battle site of the MacDonald and Campbell Clans. We had a chance to brush up on history with a movie presentation and museum before walking the battleground, where Bonny Prince Charlie was defeated.

Then it was off to visit the beautiful Cawdor Castle where exquisite tapestries and paintings adorn the walls. Afterward we had time to stroll in the typical English garden or negotiate the hedged maze.

In the following days we cruised Loch Ness, we kept a watchful eye but did not catch a glimpse of Nessie. A visit to the Nessie Museum the next day offered entertaining insight into the legend of the Loch Ness monster. Maybe on another visit she will reveal herself!

We cruised to Fort Augustus where the barge ascended the 5 locks and anchored for the night. It was still early in the day, so there was lots of time to wander around this charming village to shop, bicycle or check out the local golf course where the green keepers are sheep!! We choose to do some independent sightseeing on bicycle for the afternoon.



Scotland the brave….and beautiful!

Scottish Highlander at Fort Augustus

From Fort Augustus we cruised to Cullochy Loch where we took our tour coach to Eilean Donan Castle, the setting for the film Highlander. It was one of my favourite excursions. It is a beautiful castle that sits off the west coast with views of 3 sea Lochs.

Originally build about 800 years ago, it was left in ruins after an attack in the early 18th century. Between 1913 and 1932 it was rebuilt by the MacRae family who are still in residence several months a year. Guests are allowed to tour the banqueting hall, recreated kitchen and bedrooms which have period furnishings. Once visited, one could imagine the isolation and hardship of life so long ago.

We left the Loch behind and cruised on Gairlochy where we were able to visit the Clan Cameron museum, see the World War II Commando memorial and visit the woollen mill at Spean Bridge. This was our chance to buy scarfs, sweaters, socks shortbread and Scotch (anything that begins with S) and more! Our problem was we needed another suitcase to transport it back home!

Friday arrived and brought our last day on board. We visited the Glen Nevis distillery for a tour and a dram of Scotch. We had impromptu visit to a local rock and gem museum which was surprisingly interesting and informative. We stopped at Fort William to finish some last minute shopping before heading back to the barge to change for the Captains dinner.

The dinner hour was signaled by the arrival of a local piper. As on our arrival, we had our farewell champagne, toasted our wonderful crew who had made our holiday most enjoyable, relaxing and interesting. Our appetizer was Haggis – prepared by a local master butcher, it was delicious – I was told. I opted for the less adventurous vegetarian version and was not disappointed. It was also delicious!

We had a main course of duck and fresh vegetables. The most exquisite dessert called Cranachan was served followed by cheese and crackers.

The captain provided the after dinner entertainment – and I am sworn to secrecy so as not to spoil it for future guests. I will,however, say that it was truly a pleasant surprise!

This was an ideal way of experiencing the history, cuisine, scenery, culture and camaraderie of Scotland. We were at liberty to join the excursions offered, stay on board and relax, bicycle on the canal pathways between lochs or wander through the villages on our own.

After breakfast on Saturday as we prepared to leave ‘our' barge, there was a touch of sadness. We said goodbye to the crew, boarded our coach to head back to Inverness.

As the barge faded in the distance we watched the green hills, tranquil water and, on this particular day, cloudless blue sky from the van window. We. remembered the cool crisp mornings, sunny afternoons and the sun setting over the hillside.

We took home wonderful memories of the history, landscape and friendship of Scotland.

Visit Scottish Highlander   or contact us today about a cruise in Scotland.

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Scottish Highlander
The Scottish Highlander
Christmas Cruise

visit Scottish highlanderIf this has whetted your appetite for a cruise aboard the Scottish Highlander, we are pleased to remind you that the Scottish Highlander 's amazing  Great Glen cruise is available year around. The Highlands take on a new life as they are dusted with

The white of new snow and the deer can be spotted high in the hills with the barge binoculars.

To give you some idea of the scenery you will encounter we draw your attention to
www.thisisnorthscotland.co.uk/ .

 

SCOTTISH HIGHLANDER ITINERARY - CHRISTMAS CRUISE

23rd December Inverness to Drumnadrochit

At 4pm we meet at the Glenmoriston Town House Hotel in Inverness and transfer to Scottish Highlander moored at Drumnadrochit. Champagne welcome and dinner aboard, followed by good old-fashioned Scottish entertainment.

24th December, Christmas Eve - Drumnadrochit to Foyers

In the morning we take a trip up to Moniack Castle, famous for its wines, liqueurs and preserves. On returning to the barge, we cruise past Urquhart Castle on our way along the northern shore of Loch Ness, then cross the loch to the village of Foyers. On arrival in Foyers we can enjoy a small Whisky tasting with the captain before lunch. In the afternoon we take a trip into the Inverfarigaig forest for a delightful walk to the Falls of Foyers and a drive into the hills to see the deer. It will also be possible to attend a Christmas Eve service at a local church. Dinner on board and entertainment while presents can be put round the Christmas tree.

25th December, Christmas Day - Foyers to Fort Augustus

After breakfast we cruise to Fort Augustus, a charming village at the south western end of the Loch Ness, its prominent feature being a splendid lock staircase. Traditional Christmas Lunch and Christmas present opening are followed by jolly accordion music. Late afternoon can be spent with a gentle saunter around the village or maybe a game of croquet or putting. Scottish afternoon cream tea.

26th December, Boxing Day - Fort Augustus to Drumnadrochit

After breakfast we cruise up the loch to Drumnadrochit where we visit the Loch Ness Visitor Centre where the myth of the Loch Ness monster is explained, along with an interesting exhibition on her sightings and the search for her over the years. Captain's Farewell Dinner aboard followed by a trip out to a local inn for live Scottish music.

27th December - Drumnadrochit

Passengers disembark for the transfer to Inverness by minibus after a hearty Scottish breakfast. This itinerary is subject to change.

2 staterooms still available for the 4 night Christmas cruise £1300/US$2400 per person  

Contact us today for more information on our Christmas cruise     back to top




Magna Carta - 5 Night New Year Cruise Magna Carta on Royal River Thames
28th December to 2nd January, from Shepperton to Henley on Thames

Why not do a 4 night Christmas cruise on Scottish Highlander and fly Inverness to Heathrow and stay overnight and then do the New Year cruise on Magna Carta - 2 suites are still available

28th December

Meet at The Stafford Hotel for afternoon tea at 3pm and then transfer to Magna Carta moored in Shepperton. Afternoon cruise through the countryside to our mooring at Runnymede. It was here in 1215 that King John sealed the document that was the first ever Bill of Rights and from where our barge got its name. Dinner on board.

29th December

Above Runnymede the scenery becomes quite breathtaking as we continue on towards Windsor. The Thames forms a natural moat around the castle and so our view of this mighty fortress and royal home keeps changing.  Our afternoon visit is the castle itself. The largest inhabited castle in the world, Windsor has been a royal home for 900 years.  Dinner on board.

30th December

The river just keeps on getting better! We leave Windsor and cruise through Bray and Maidenhead and into the spectacular Cliveden Reach. High on the wooded hill top we can see the magnificent former home of the Astor family and now one of the world's finest hotels. We continue cruising into Cookham, which the late artist Stanley Spencer called a village "made in heaven", and then we visit Stanley Spencer's gallery by special arrangement.  Dinner on board.

31st December - New Years Eve

A morning cruise as the Thames meanders through the open countryside of Bourne End and the delightful riverside town of Marlow where we can take time to stop and explore before continuing on to Hurley.  In the afternoon the secrets of this tiny 11 th century village reveal themselves and then there is time to rest before the New Year's Eve celebrations begin. New Years Eve Celebration dinner followed by either a party aboard Magna Carta or we can join the villagers in one of their historic pubs. For charter groups other options can be made available.

1st January - New Years Day "Welcome in the New Year"

Perhaps a slightly later start this morning! And a riverside walk before our chef provides a substantial brunch.  Our final cruise takes us through unspoilt beauty into Henley-on-Thames, the last mile and a quarter being the actual regatta course for which Henley is so famous. Time to discover the town and the River and Rowing Museum before preparing for the Gala Captains Farewell Dinner aboard.

2nd January

Depart for London or Heathrow at 9am after breakfast, Itinerary is subject to change

Price: £2000/US$4000 per person based on 2 people sharing,
Minimum 4 people required to guarantee this cruise
.   

Contact us today for more information on our New Year cruise    back to top




ABC Luxury barge cruising in Burgundy aboard La Belle Epoque, France

The ABC regions of Alsace, Burgundy and Champagne boast some of France's most beautiful wine routes. Alsatians, Burgundians and Champenois are eager to welcome American travelers to their vineyards, to simply sample the wine and hospitality or to stay overnight in B&Bs located on prestigious historic estates.

Eastern France, longtime a favorite destination of European travelers, is quickly becoming "discovered" by American tourists who are eager to leave the hustle-bustle of Paris behind them and experience the pleasures of Eastern France: storybook villages, winding wine roads, fascinating museums, splendid cathedrals and a wealth of outdoor activities.

Eastern France consists of three distinctive regions: Alsace , Burgundy and Champagne-Ardenne . Each boasts its own identity, traditions and heritage, as well an amazing diversity of cuisine and culture. Alsace, home to some of France's finest foods, is a gourmand's paradise. A tour of the famed wine routes of Burgundy and Champagne is sure to delight lovers of the vine.

Champagne country, birthplace of le champagne, the world's most festive wine. La Champagne, the region where this fine bubbly is made, holds so many treasures: a rolling countryside, dotted medieval churches, timeless castles and villages along winding waterways, historic fortifications in the forested Ardennes, and vineyards as far as the eye can see between Reims and Epernay.

As Renoir once said - he had a summer home in Champagne: " I like to live with winegrowers because they are generous" . The home of champagne could only be welcoming. Accept its invitation and feast your eyes and taste buds.

Click on the Wine Glass to see a video of Eastern France showing the wonderful scenery and spectacular architecture through which our barges L'Art de Vivre,Hirondelle,La Belle Epoque,La Reine Pedauque,Serenite and Savoire Faire pass.   

Contact us today for more information on our cruises in Alsace, Bordeaux and Champagne    back to top



 

Enter our August Wine competition hereAugust Competition winner

For August’s competition we offered six bottles of the finest Vosne Romanee from Domaine Jaffelin in Nuits St Georges, Burgundy. We have served this wine for decades, always grateful for the opportunity to buy Burgundy’s finest from a family run Domaine.

Find the winner of our August competition here

 

September Competition

Spectacular ScotlandFor our September Lockkeeper competition we have a hard back copy of Spectacular Scotland by James Gracie to give away..

Scotland, legendary land of bagpipes, heather, tartans, and fine malt whisky, is fêted in the gorgeous photographs and vivid text of this large-format illustrated book. This magical destination is profiled in all its variety, including lofty mountains, misty glens, and fascinating cities such as elegant, historic Edinburgh and innovative Glasgow. Here too are sumptuous surveys of the splendid coastline, glorious islands, white sand beaches, and exotic gardens that make the country a favored destination of tourists and a source of pride to those who live there. Enter the Spectacular Scotland competition here .

GoBarging Photo Competition - closing soon

Have you spent time cruising with European Waterways? Would you like to do so again FREE ! Then Dig out your barging holiday photos featuring European Waterways and email to us, together with a short story or caption and the best photograph will win a double cabin on board L'Impressionniste or La Belle Epoque in spring or summer 2008.

The photo competition closes at end October 2007, and the winner, chosen by Derek Banks, will be announced in the November Lockkeeper. The cruise must be booked within 6 weeks prior to departure, subject to availability.

Send your entry to us via this email link lockkeeper@gobarging.com  back to top




Burgundy, Where Food and Wine is an Art Form
Luxury barge cruises on Art de Vivre in Burgundy, France

Charles Dickens wrote in the Tale of two Cities "It is the best of times, it is the worst of times",  from arriving in Paris we will do our  very best to ensure you only have THE BEST OF TIMES !   

Burgundy is a timeless land, a haven of peace and serenity. Little has changed over the centuries and it is almost totally unspoilt. The name Burgundy is synonymous with the magnificent wines of the area and it is also renowned for its many canals and canal boats, with 1200km of navigable waterways. Rich in history there are many medieval villages and historic towns.

If Paris is the capital of France then Burgundy   ( Bourgogne ) is its heart. The region lies midway between the vast cereal plains of northern France and the valley of the Rhone and the south. The River Yonne is the traditional waterway to Paris , the Loire marks the western border and the Saone flows through the southern vineyards.

 Its colourful history has marked the region with a rich heritage of Romanesque architecture that stands as a testament to the mediaeval stonemasons, woodcarvers, sculptors and painters of the time. The great abbeys of Vezelay, Potigny, and Fontenay, the Gothic cathedrals of Auxerre and Nevers, resting place of St. Bernadette of Lourdes and the basilica of Paray-le-Monial, famous as a centre of pilgrimage.


However, the charm and romance of the region is not just about those grand Gothic or Romanesque buildings, the châteaux or churches. It is also about the little details on ordinary houses that catch the eye at every turn, the architecture in the villages which has stood the test of time and which is so pleasing to the eye..

Barging in Burgundy

The 8 passenger L'Art de Vivre started life as a Scottish munitions carrier and survived long enough to be transformed by a team of skilled crafts-men into a floating celebration of the Burgundian "good life".

Your crew of four comprises Captain, Tour guide, Master Chef and Hostess, all with a love for the Nivernais canal, and all secure in the knowledge that their vessel represents L'Art de Vivre itself

Art du Vivre, Burgundy

The region simply oozes charm and the cruise is a journey back in time along a magical waterway. The Upper Nivernais remains an undiscovered region, well off the beaten track on the edge of the Morvan hills. The sleepy hamlets, white grazing Charolais cattle, woods and forrests are typical of the scenery we cruise through.

During the summer months we visit the Valley of Sardy, a canal section with smaller locks, where time seems to have stood still for over two hundred years. The hand-swung bridges are a delight and we pass old logging sites which are now almost forgotten memory for the local people.  




Burgundy, Where Food and Wine is an Art Form - continued
Luxury barge cruises on Art de Vivre in Burgundy, France

AIRPORT to AMPERE to ART DU VIVRE

After arriving in Paris your journey really begins, an easy transfer from your destination airport (nearest airport: Roissy Charles de Gaulle, Paris), take a short  taxi to the recommended hotel - Hotel Ampere   address/   102 Avenue de Villiers  75017 PARIS   .

What to tell the taxi driver; Allez a l'Etoile et prenez l'Avenue de Wagram.  Tournez a gauche dans l'Avenue de Villiers et l'hotel est a votre droite.

The Hotel Ampère is a luxurious hotel built in the very heart of a prestigious neighbourhood of Paris.It offers you its 100 comfortable bedrooms and, its a wonderful restaurant "Le jardin d'Ampère ",  dinner here will tempt your taste buds for the cuisine which is to follow once on board L'Art du Vivre.    

Hotel Ampere Paris

BEGINNING OF CRUISE

A member of crew will meet you at Hotel Ampere at 1.30pm on the Sunday for your bus transfer to L'Art de Vivre moored in Clamecy or Baye depending on the direction of the cruise for that week.  

STORAGE OF SUITCASES

Hotel Ampere can offer a storage facility for suitcases during your cruise, so if you have belongings you do not need for the cruise, you can leave them at Hotel Ampere for 6 nights without charge.

END OF CRUISE

You are transferred by coach from the barge to Hotel Ampere Villiers in Paris, arriving there at about 1pm.   It is therefore important to ensure that any flights out of Charles De Gaulle (CDG) Airport on the same day are booked for departure after 4pm.

We have given you the beginning and the end, now its up to you fill in the best bit of all .....your journey on L'Art de Vivre.

Contact us today for more information on our Burgundy cruises aboard L'Art du Vivre    back to top




Go Barging showcases Loch Lomond SeaplanesCessna Seaplane
Bringing nostalgia back to Scotland

Europe’s first city centre seaplane service has started regular flights to the Highlands and islands from the River Clyde in the heart of Glasgow. Alongside such exotic destinations as the Maldives, Australia and the Bahamas can now be added the likes of Oban, Tobermory and Ardnamurchan as Glasgow becomes the only European city to have a regular seaplane service operating from the middle of a metropolis.

Loch Lomond Seaplanes launched its pioneering on-demand flights from a new purpose built terminal on the Clyde, next to Glasgow Science Centre, on Monday August 20, 2007. Starting with Oban, “Britain’s primary commercial flying boat service for more than 50 years is offering frequent flights to a number of destinations in a bid to reduce travelling time between the central belt and some of the more remote Highland communities to minutes rather than hours.”

Opening up the west coast with a raft of new destinations to be added over the next few months European Waterways will be able to put a whole new spin on your fly/cruise vacation! This new service will provide passengers with the opportunity to relive the romantic halcyon days of air travel without the stress and inconvenience of using conventional airport!

In creating a faster and more exciting way to reach Scottish Highlander and the Highlands than by road or rail, the seaplane service will offer not only huge time saving benefits, but the luxury of having a bird’s eye view of the magnificent heather clad hillsides and an unparalleled view of Scottish Highlander. This would be a truly unforgettable experience! The company, which has been successfully operating charter flights out of Loch Lomond for the last three years and is currently looking at other
destinations such as Fort William.

Seaplanes are a common sight in some of the world’s most exotic conservation areas from the wilds of Alaska to Australia’s Great Barrier Reef because of their ability to utilise both land and water without causing unnecessary damage to the environment. In Canada and Alaska small float-planes are used almost like buses serving remote coastal communities and in Scotland, which has 6,200 miles of coastline with more than 700 islands and 560 large fresh water lochs, the possibilities of replicating such a service are endless.

Loch Lomond Seaplanes is already a favourite with celebrities, such as golfer Darren Clarke and Olympic rowing champion Steve Redgrave, and has been featured on numerous television programmes as film-makers appreciate the quick and easy access the seaplane provides from Scotland’s central belt to the Highlands and Islands.

Golfers can be ferried around some of the country’s finest courses in a single day while access to a range of romantic destinations - including Loch Tay, Loch Voil, Loch Lomond and the islands of Islay, Jura, Bute and Skye - has been made much easier than ever before. (See themed Golfing cruises on our website).

Here’s the science bit:- The Cessna 208, used by Loch Lomond Seaplanes, is an amphibious aircraft able to land on water or conventional runways. It is considered one of the most reliable, versatile, and cost-effective airplanes ever built. Powered by a single Pratt & Whitney Canada PT6A-114A turboprop engine it is capable of carrying nine passengers and bags over 300 miles or four passengers up to 1000 miles non-stop at speeds of up to 171mph. Regarded by many as the most comfortable seaplane in the world its luxury leather seats, excellent ventilation system, quiet cabin noise and comfortable cruising speed makes sure every trip is first class.

The first ever successful seaplane flight took off on March 28, 1910 when inventor, Henri Fabre flew 1,650 feet over water at Martinque, France. Within 25 years Pan American Airways began pioneering international routes across the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans heralding the golden age of air travel.

Via The Lock Keeper we will keep you updated as to when the seaplanes begin flying into Fort William so you can plan your trip and perhaps be the first passengers greeted onboard Scottish Highland by Captain Dan from this classic seaplane! For further information please visit www.lochlomondseaplanes.com    back to top




News

HIGHLAND FEAST SET TO TEMPT LOVERS OF GOOD FOOD

Gastronomes, gourmets and gluttons can look forward to17 days of feasting during this year's Highland Feast festival from September 28 to October 14. Attractions include a Highland banquet on a steam train, a Tartan Breakfast on the banks of Loch Ness, a Highland Hoolie involving creative cocktails, local fare and plenty of dancing. There is also Living Food, an organic produce fair which takes place at Cawdor Castle, a Jacobite Highland Feast on Loch Ness, and many other events throughout the region.


Highland FeastAn estimated 13,000 visitors are expected to attend the largest food and drink event of its kind in the north of Scotland. Plenty of top-notch chefs will be in evidence, with demonstrations by Allan Little of Riverhouse Restaurant and Shirley Spear of Three Chimneys on Skye. Willie Cameron, festival director said: "Highland Feast has gained a reputation as a key event in Scotland, showcasing the array of exemplary produce for which the region is renowned."Blessed with some of the finest produce in the country, with a host of celebrated chefs living and working in the area, the perfect backdrop for the event is provided by the breathtaking scenery and welcoming atmosphere for which the Highlands are famous."

Running simultaneously is the Inverness Real Ale festival between September 28 and 30. Now in its fourth year, the festival features an array of real ales, ciders and stouts created by independent brewers. This year's event is hosted in two venues, Clachnaharry Inn and the Castle Tavern, with courtesy coaches provided between the locations. For a full listing of events and further information on Highland Feast 2007 visit www.highlandfeast.co.uk or call the Highland Feast hotline on 01463 222915 for a free festival brochure.

Press & Journal - 27 August 2007

Scottish Self Catering at Fort Augustus

visit Scottish highlanderIf you like the look of Scotland but want to be land based, consider renting one of our newly refurbished two 2 bedroom apartments in Fort Augustus. Situated on Telfords famous lock flight on the Caledonian Canal linking Loch Ness and Loch Oich, our apartments which were converted within an old British Waterways Lock house, make an ideal position from where you can explore the Highlands on foot, bike or car .

From $800 - $1600 per week per apartment self catering, but with access to great local restaurants and pubs. – More news soon.”

Travel News - Airport News 

British Airways are to increase US flights from Heathrow to New York/Seattle/ Washington/ Dallas Fort Worth and Houston which  will make much it easier for GoBarging clients to fly to Heathrow and Gatwick to meet up with the Magna Carta and Actief and for connections to Scotland for the Scottish Highlander.

Heathrow to JFK will go up from 51 to 55 flights per week, to Seattle from 10 to 13 flights per week, and to Washington from 21 to 24 flights per week. The airline's daily flight to Dallas Fort Worth and double daily flights to Houston will move from Gatwick to Heathrow airport on the same date, but flights from Heathrow and Detroit will be suspended - by Bev Fearis  - Travelmole

Ryanair is now charging you to check-in at the airport. £2 each way, if you don't check in online

If you have any suggestions, feedback or barging stories to tell us, then please e-mail us. We'll be glad to hear from you and share your inputs in the lock-keeper.

Why not email this edition on to a friend, and let them share the fun. New subscribers can sign-up here, and are very welcome. More people are joining every day, so let's keep building a great Barging community..!

That's about it for this 51st edition of the Lockkeeper, and hopefully the above articles have whet your appetite for that well-earned luxury cruise..! Please visit barge cruises and have a look around, or follow the individual links above. The next edition of the lock-keeper will be out in October 2007, so we'll see you then. back to top