Excusion to England

DAY 1 Sunday 5 June 2005

Departure from Milan's Linate Airport

The main international airport for Milan is Malpensa, a 40-60 minute bus ride away. We had decided to leave the tour group early on the last morning and fly to London for a week in England. Our last night in Milan was to be in a hotel close to the smaller airport of Linate, so I booked a flight from there.

By 8am we had finished our breakfast, packed our bags and called a taxi that arrived 20 minutes later for the quick trip to Linate. We checked into the British Airways counter then found a seat and some coffee to wait for our 11am flight. Even on aSunday morning there were plenty of people about, and like all airports people were rushing to catch flights, others were asking us for directions, often to the Gate adjacent to our seats, and always the public announcements.

At 10.30 we headed for the departure gate, showed our boarding passes and were ushered through the departure door - straight into the open doors of a large BUS !! We were the last on board, the doors closed and we raced off across the airport to our waiting plane. Twice more the bus came out with passengers then we were cleared for take-off. But nothing moved, then 20 minutes later the pilot explained that immediately after he had been cleared for takeoff he was told that the Italian authorities had revoked the British Airways permit to fly its usual route. The pilot had to chart a new course, have this approved, have it printed out and signed, then file for a new takeoff slot at Linate. His estimate was a 90 minute delay. In the end he obtained an earlier slot, allowing us to depart at 12.15pm.

It was a pleasant flight, over the Alps and across France to Heathrow.

Heathrow and on to Nottingham

We passed through British Immigration without any delays, grabbed our bags and headed for the shuttle buses that take you to the rental car depots. Almost immediately, one arrived and before long we were in our car and off onto the M25, crawling along in a major jam due to road works. But eventually that cleared, we reached the M1 and before long we were approaching Nottingham. Much to my father's amazement I navigated from Heathrow to our hotel in Nottingham without a map, having driven it before.

We were now in Nottingham, at Castle Marina, adjacent to the canal and Brewhouse Yard where four generations of our Froggatt ancestors had lived. It was a pleasant warm evening, so we sat on the bank of the canal drinking beer and watching the swans and people go past.

The Nottingham Canal, near the Castle.
Ducklings on the canal

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Last updated: 30/06/2017