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the C word

Re: the C word

Postby Lightfoot2017 » Mon Mar 16, 2020 6:53 pm

Have to day, I think the issue of folks from all over the UK coming up to the Highlands for their 'staycation' this Summer has escalated exponentially over the past few days.

I dread to think of the chaos on Skye...resident population of c.10k, but annual visitors (2018 latest figs.) of c.670k. For anyone who thinks the North 500 was over-crowded in the recent past..
You ain't seen nothing yet.

On the upside, it does give local B&B owners, publicans, and hoteliers the green light to charge what they like. Even more so than usual. So, yeah, wild camping seems a sensible, low-cost option.

Another key point here....on the back of the upcoming surge in staycations this Summer, shouldn't regions like Dumfries and Galloway, Scottish Borders and NE Scotlsnd (Grampian and Moray) be getting poised to sell themselves big style as an alternative holiday destination?

We all know that Inverness, Fort Wm. Embra are all hugely over-heated in terms of Summer tourism. But the three areas I mention are achingly beautiful, but also woefully overlooked as tourist destinations. I would have thought local / regional efforts to market these beautiful places for the upcoming Summer tourist season should be underway now.

Covid19, tragic though it is of course, can also present opportunities.
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Re: the C word

Postby CharlesT » Mon Mar 16, 2020 7:10 pm

mash tun wrote:And anyway, you can't have a bunfight without buns.......
and there was none (verb singular as none = "not one" :wink: ) on my local supermarket's shelves yesterday


We had buns here in the effete South, just eaten one...Yah! Boo! Sucks!....
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Re: the C word

Postby mynthdd2 » Mon Mar 16, 2020 9:20 pm

are not the Southern Scotland/ Northern England regions aiming to get National Park status? they are indeed great areas to walk and visit...

PS buns in the north east of England are called stotties
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"

Postby rohan » Mon Mar 16, 2020 9:37 pm

I have 2 friends on Harris, one runs a BnB and is usually booked out, now has had a number of cancellations. The other runs a holiday let and has had less cancellations but again is usually fully booked out by now. They are concerned about their livelihoods so maybe not everyone is running to the NW of Scotland. Sound advice too from Mountain Rescue. I have put all thoughts of returning to my Watershed walk (long overdue but it will always be there) on hold. I have to travel to my next starting point by public transport and the thought of becoming ill with the virus (and technically I am in 12 week group) whilst lugging my 5 day pack does not appeal. I am fortunate, I can carry out social distancing and get plenty of coastal walks where I live. Poor city folk.
https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-scotland-highlands-islands-51908466
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Re: the C word

Postby Giant Stoneater » Mon Mar 16, 2020 10:15 pm

One of the problems of the virus is one could be a carrier with no symptoms showing in which case you could be spreading it like wildfire.
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Re: the C word

Postby Fractral » Mon Mar 16, 2020 11:06 pm

Giant Stoneater wrote:One of the problems of the virus is one could be a carrier with no symptoms showing in which case you could be spreading it like wildfire.

Depends on whether you're in contact with any locals I guess, if you're wildcamping and bring everything with you there's minimal risk to anyone. Although you're not helping the economic situation any.

My vague plan for the next few weeks is to go wild camping alone, since the hostel / hut meets my local club do seem rather dumb - I'd be worried about accidentally infecting the older club members! (Or being infected myself). My regular climbing partners and I are also planning to go outdoors, helpfully the evenings are getting longer.

( And I note the PM did mention exercise as an exception to self isolation)
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Re: the C word

Postby mash tun » Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:43 am

rohan wrote:I have 2 friends on Harris, one runs a BnB and is usually booked out, now has had a number of cancellations. The other runs a holiday let and has had less cancellations but again is usually fully booked out by now.
We had planned to go on an island hoppper in May from Stornoway down to Castlebay - I had been looking at accommodation in Harris and was finding it difficult to get availability only a month or so ago. However, we've decided to put all on hold for now. Family Western Europe trip in June all bought and paid for with separate flights and accommodation - suspect we won't be going but might be lucky to get even some of it back. At the end of the day for us it means losing possibly a few thousand but for others it's their livelihoods or lives so we count ourselves fortunate.

CharlesT wrote:We had buns here in the effete South, just eaten one...Yah! Boo! Sucks!....
mynthdd2 wrote:PS buns in the north east of England are called stotties
Jings - you're almost convincing me that I should move to England.........but not quite :wink:
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Re: the C word

Postby mynthdd2 » Tue Mar 17, 2020 10:41 am

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Re: the C word

Postby thedonalds » Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:30 am

At the end of next week I am due to spend a week in a cottage near Acharacle booked through Walk Highlands with Cottages.com and currently wondering what to do. Checking the Cottages.com site today all it says in relation to Covid-19 is "Presently there are no travel restrictions to any of our UK destinations" which means they reckon its business as usual so if I cancel then I am going to loose everything even though I am following Government advice. And there's no guidance on the Walk Highlands site either. There must be lots of others in a similar position.
The Cottages.com t&c's indicates that the contract is actually between the owner and the visitor, not Cottages.com (let's put that to one side for now.....) so my suggestion would be that if locals are concerned about visitors appearing then the onus is on the owners to cancel or reschedule the booking because they should know what the local situation is. I guess there must some owners on Walk Highlands and it would be good to hear what they think.
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Re: the C word

Postby kmai1961 » Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:35 am

thedonalds wrote:At the end of next week I am due to spend a week in a cottage near Acharacle booked through Walk Highlands with Cottages.com and currently wondering what to do. Checking the Cottages.com site today all it says in relation to Covid-19 is "Presently there are no travel restrictions to any of our UK destinations" which means they reckon its business as usual so if I cancel then I am going to loose everything even though I am following Government advice. And there's no guidance on the Walk Highlands site either. There must be lots of others in a similar position.
The Cottages.com t&c's indicates that the contract is actually between the owner and the visitor, not Cottages.com (let's put that to one side for now.....) so my suggestion would be that if locals are concerned about visitors appearing then the onus is on the owners to cancel or reschedule the booking because they should know what the local situation is. I guess there must some owners on Walk Highlands and it would be good to hear what they think.


Hi there -- I've got an upcoming booking with cottages.com as well. There is an updated message (link at the top of the home page) that says that, while they're not offering refunds, they are currently allowing you to change your booking(s) without the usual penalties or fees. I've been trying to ring them for a while, unsuccessfully (and unsurprisingly), but did send them a message via their online form. Perhaps that will work, we shall see.
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Re: the C word

Postby HalfManHalfTitanium » Tue Mar 17, 2020 11:43 am

SYHA have posted some useful information about bookings and stays in their hostels, at https://www.hostellingscotland.org.uk/covid-19-travel-advice/ . They say they will update this as the situation progresses.

Tim
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Re: the C word

Postby Sunset tripper » Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:35 pm

thedonalds wrote:At the end of next week I am due to spend a week in a cottage near Acharacle booked through Walk Highlands with Cottages.com and currently wondering what to do. Checking the Cottages.com site today all it says in relation to Covid-19 is "Presently there are no travel restrictions to any of our UK destinations" which means they reckon its business as usual so if I cancel then I am going to loose everything even though I am following Government advice. And there's no guidance on the Walk Highlands site either. There must be lots of others in a similar position.
The Cottages.com t&c's indicates that the contract is actually between the owner and the visitor, not Cottages.com (let's put that to one side for now.....) so my suggestion would be that if locals are concerned about visitors appearing then the onus is on the owners to cancel or reschedule the booking because they should know what the local situation is. I guess there must some owners on Walk Highlands and it would be good to hear what they think.


Hi Donald. I doubt if the good folk of Acharacle are bothered and I'm sure you are not going there to breath all over them.
I would say unless you are particularly concerned for yourself and you wont enjoy your break, just go for it. Acharacle is as good a place to self isolate as any.

I just got off the train in Dalwhinnie ~ what a beautiful day! :D
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Re: the C word

Postby thedonalds » Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:49 pm

Sunset Tripper
Thanks for the comments but the bad news for you is the local weather forecast for Dalwhinnie is heavy rain by 1.00pm today 17 March and all through the afternoon........I will post more on the booking situation when I hear back from the owner in Acharacle.
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Re: the C word

Postby Gareth Harper » Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:55 pm

I'd like to think that, once those of us lucky enough not to be in a higher risk group (in which, fingers crossed, I count myself being a couple of years or so under 60 in, touch wood, reasonable health) have contracted covid19 and recovered, we'd stick around and help relatives, friends, neighbours etc who may be less fortunate. We're all in it together and will need to act responsibly to ensure we get out of it together.


I’m a little bit concerned about all the talk of herd immunity. Firstly, I’m not a medical person or even a virologist – I’m just a concerned individual who’s reading stuff and scratching his wee heid a little.

So, we have a brand-new virus doing the rounds. It’s highly infectious and flu like in its behaviour. We have no vaccine and nobody has any immunity whatsoever.

So, considering this is a brand new (for humans) virus then how do we know that anybody who gets infected and recovers has any real long-term immunity? Immunity is an assumption.

From what I have read, those recovered will have initial immunity, and the hope is that it will be long lasting immunity.

So, think about another virus that many of us are familiar with – Norovirus – I’ve contracted it in the past. I’m sure my GP told me after I had recovered that I had a good solid 3 months immunity. The interweb seems to suggest that immunity to Norovirus is 6 – 24 mnths.

We are told to listen to the experts. I’m a little concerned that our government experts seem to be planning based on an assumption.
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Re: the C word

Postby rohan » Tue Mar 17, 2020 1:39 pm

thedonalds wrote:At the end of next week I am due to spend a week in a cottage near Acharacle booked through Walk Highlands with Cottages.com and currently wondering what to do. Checking the Cottages.com site today all it says in relation to Covid-19 is "Presently there are no travel restrictions to any of our UK destinations" which means they reckon its business as usual so if I cancel then I am going to loose everything even though I am following Government advice. And there's no guidance on the Walk Highlands site either. There must be lots of others in a similar position.
The Cottages.com t&c's indicates that the contract is actually between the owner and the visitor, not Cottages.com (let's put that to one side for now.....) so my suggestion would be that if locals are concerned about visitors appearing then the onus is on the owners to cancel or reschedule the booking because they should know what the local situation is. I guess there must some owners on Walk Highlands and it would be good to hear what they think.


Holiday cottages are slightly different from BnBs but a couple of ones I know are advising of their measures to protect themselves and their visitors. Thorough cleaning between bookings (asking people to arrive slightly later to facilitate this), plenty of soap and cleaning stuff available for visitors to use, no direct contact between owner and visitor. As we have seen, however, advice is changing on a daily basis. Never mind a week being a long time in politics, 24 hrs is an eon in this virus crisis. I hope you get your holiday and have fine weather as well.
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