Since the last newsletter, lots has changed. The outside temperature has gone up from 6 degrees to 7 degrees and we have had full crowds at the snooker in Sheffield. The latter of these brings us the biggest hope for the 2021 season as things finally seem to be opening up again.
We have the latest on the prospects for European travel, which are looking better than they have done for over a year. We will be taking a look at the new traffic light system and the digital green certificate that will probably be required for travel.
We will also be considering the prospects for the motorhome shows and in particular the NEC in October, with an update from the organisers.
We have another great recipe from Dave, with a French inspiration this month and this month's motorhoming tips are all about the post-Brexit rules for travelling with pets.
The traffic light system
There has been quite a bit of good news around over the last month. Boris has finally paid for his flat renovations and we now know who H is in Line of Duty.
On the Covid front, the vacc programme continues to roll out at pace and infection rates are well down. The next couple of months will be the true test. If infections rates remain low despite the easing of lockdown, then all the signs are looking really good.
In the short term, unfortunately we have now cancelled all of our tours from April to June with the first prospect of travel being our Summer In Sweden Tour in August. Everyone who was cancelled has either transferred to another tour or had a full refund. All refunds are paid with seven working days so no hanging about waiting.
On a more positive note, looking ahead, there will be further announcements by the UK government on 10th and then 17th May about the new traffic light system for travel. Without getting into the detail too much, we are hoping for green lights to the countries that we visit. Green light means that no quarantine is required in either direction. You will have to have a negative test before departure and another one a few days after arrival.
In addition, the EU have been making very positive noises about restarting inbound travel. They will be making further announcements on 11th May about the Green Digital Certificate, which is effectively a Covid passport. At the moment they are saying that anyone who has had both jabs will be able to enter the EU.
Proof will be provided via an app, which will contain a QR code (the black and white things). The QR code will contain information about your jabs. You will simply scan your QR code on the border. The EU and British governments are both working on apps to make this happen and are hopeful of having these ready for the summer. Getting things running by the summer is key to the economic success of the tourist industry, hence there being a push on it now.
So in summary, there is going be an element of faff, but European travel does like like it could come back again for our tours going in August and September. Providing that we get some good news in the next couple of months, we will be adding to the tour schedule later this year with more Autumn tours.
As always, we would remind you all of of COVID guarantee, which will remain in place for the rest of this year and for 2022 as well. Full details on the website here.
The NEC Show in October
We have received an update from the NCC, who are the organisers of the NEC Motorhome Show in October.
As you probably know, there are a number of 'test events' taking place around the country at the moment, which the NCC are keeping a close eye on. The snooker was one of them and there was a rock concert in Liverpool with 5000 people in attendance. There are further events planned an announcement will be made at the beginning of June about mass events in general.
A few of you have contacted us to find out what is happening with the NEC as the two big clubs have been a bit quiet about it. We are assured by the NCC that both the Motorhome and Caravan Club, and the Camping and Caravanning Club will be in attendance. Most of the big manufacturers and dealers will be there as usual...and of course we will be there too. What more of an excuse to you need to come?
We suspect that once things start to open up, that it will happen quite quickly. As we all know, there is a massive pent up demand for anything that gets us out of the house at the moment.
As things stand the NCC are planning a full event at the NEC in October. At this stage they are still waiting to find out what social distancing measures will be required, if any.
Coq au Van
This month- something a bit French. Although there will be no snogging after you've eaten these.
Baked Garlicky Mushrooms
4 cloves of garlic.
1/2 bunch of fresh sage.
350g of ripe mixed colour cherry tomatoes.
4 large portobello mushrooms.
40g cheddar cheese.
Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas6. Peel and finely slice the garlic. Pick the sage leaves. Halve the cherry tomatoes. Peel the mushrooms, reserving the peel. Place it all (peel included) in a 25cm x 30cm roasting tray and drizzle with 1 tablespoon each of olive oil and red wine vinegar.
Add a pinch of sea salt and black pepper and toss together.
Pick out 12 perfect garlic slices and sage leaves for later, and sit the mushrooms stalk side up on the top. Bake for 10mins.
Remove the tray from the oven, crumble the cheese into the mushroom cups and sprinkle over the reserve garlic and sage. Return to the oven for 15 more mins, or until the cheese is melted and everything is golden,
Dish up and enjoy.
After Brexit, there were some changes made to the requirements for taking pets to Europe. Before taking your dog to the EU for the first time you must complete the following steps. The only new requirement for travel to the EU is the use of a certificate, rather than a pet passport:
Ensure your dog is microchipped.
Ensure your dog is vaccinated against rabies – pets must be at least 12 weeks old before they can be vaccinated.
Wait 21 days after the primary vaccination before travel.
Dogs must be treated against tapeworm 24-120 hours before landing, if they are travelling to a tapeworm free country.
Visit their vet to get an animal health certificate (AHC) for their pet, no more than 10 days before travel to the EU.
Full information available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-rules-for-pet-travel-from-1-january-2021
Keep in touch
Please feel free to contact us at any time. When we are away, calls will bounce to our mobiles at no expense to yourself.