Hold Tight! - Touring
Chapter 5
Page 34
Hold Tight!
Chapter 5
28 A new start
29 Bus station
30 The NBC
31 Renumbering
32 Europe à la carte
33 Favourite places
34 Touring
1 Beginnings
2 Learning
3 Getting Away
4 Winchester
5 Freedom
6 Southampton
7 City Transport
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Hants & Dorset were famous for their coach holidays which they had run for many years. The coach drivers were carefully selected to look after the customers and the tours stayed at top class hotels. Even the daily newspaper was included in the price for tours in Britain.
As well as holidays in Great Britain there were holidays and short tours on the continent. I once saw a Hants & Dorset coach in Luzern and on another occasion nearby in Alpnachstad.
The kiosk under the Eiffel Tower sold only non-alcoholic drinks. I tried an alcohol-free beer and it was horrible. Looking round for somewhere to get rid of it I saw a Hants & Dorset coach driver. Job done. And as we were catching the same car-ferry home from Le Havre that night, he let me put my luggage on the coach so that I did not have to carry it round all day. That afternoon I went to Longchamp and lost twenty francs on the Prix de l'Arc de Triomphe.
In September, when most of the holidays were over, the company let us have a coach for the weekend. We supplied the driver, space on the ferry was already booked in case of a holiday tour, so we only had to pay for the fuel. One year we had a tour of Normandy, staying overnight in a hotel in Lisieux. The guy behind the bar got drunk so we had to pour our own drinks and work out how to use the till. I don't know what time the bar was supposed to shut but I went to bed at one o'clock and people were still drinking.
The 1972 timetable advertises
3 days Lincolnshire Tulip Fields
4 days Isle of Thanet and Canterbury
5 days Norfolk Broads and East Coast
6 days Buxton and Peak District
6 days Devon and Cornwall
6 days Harrogate and Yorkshire Dales
6 days Welsh Highlands and The Lakes
7 days Wye Valley and Pembrokeshire Coast
7 days North Wales
7 days Edinburgh and Trossachs
8 days Edinburgh and Loch Lomond
8 days John O'Groats and Loch Maree
9 days Western Highlands and Isle of Skye
4 days Normandy (Carteret)
4 days Normandy (Rouen and Honfleur)
10 days Rhine Valley
10 days Switzerland
11 days Austrian Tyrol
11 days Italian Lakes
12 days Austria
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