Month: July 2016

British Airways i360 opens on 4 August

The British Airways i360 in Brighton, the world’s tallest moving observation tower, will open on Thursday 4 August.

The operator of the attraction, which is located on Brighton’s sea front, says that visitors will “glide up the tower in a fully enclosed futuristic glass viewing pod to admire the unfolding views across Brighton and the south coast”.

During the day, ‘flights’ will take 20 minutes (from leaving the ground to returning to it). After 6pm the pod transforms into the Nyetimber Sky Bar serving the finest drinks from the region. These evening flights will take 30 minutes.

Pre-booked group visitors will benefit from priority entry and discounts and/or group free places. The attraction says that a visit will last around an hour. This will include a ‘pre-ride experience’, the flight itself, and time in the shop and exhibition.

Ticket prices for groups of 15 or more are £13.50 for adults, £11.25 for Seniors aged 60 and over, and £6.75 for children aged 4 to 15 inclusive. Children under 4 travel free.

Tour operators planning to take regular groups may be eligible for a travel trade account. For more information email groups@britishairwaysi360.com

Conceived and designed by Marks Barfield Architects, creators of the London Eye, the attraction opens almost exactly two years to the day from the moment the project team put the first spade in the ground to begin construction.

Architects David Marks and Julia Barfield say: “After two years of intense groundbreaking architectural and engineering work on Brighton beach, we are delighted to announce the forthcoming completion of British Airways i360 with tickets now on sale to the public for flights from Thursday 4 August. The team behind the British Airways i360 has gone beyond the call of duty and created a new landmark they should all be proud of.

“Built at the landward end of Brighton’s historic West Pier, the British Airways i360 is a modern day vertical pier which invites visitors to ‘walk on air’ and gain a new perspective on the city, just as the West Pier invited Victorian society to ‘walk on water’.

“The glass viewing pod, ten times the size of a London Eye capsule and capable of carrying up to 200 passengers, will slowly rise up a slender steel tower to a height of 450 feet to provide passengers with stunning views of Brighton and Hove and a beautiful panorama of the south coast and English Channel.”

Lynne Embleton, British Airways director of strategy and MD Gatwick, says: “The British Airways i360 is now ready for take-off and we are looking forward to welcoming visitors on board. Brighton is home to thousands of our customers and colleagues and we fly to more than 65 destinations across the globe from Gatwick so we are delighted to be involved in this exciting attraction that we know UK and international visitors will love.”

Tickets can be booked at www.britishairwaysi360.com or by calling 03337 720 360 (a £2 surcharge will be added to each booking made by telephone). Bookings can also be made at the British Airways i360 ticket office from Thursday 4 August.


The British Airways i360 in Brighton opens on 4 August

Conwy and Betws-y-Coed go ‘coach friendly’

The popular north Wales destinations of Conwy and Betws-y-Coed have been awarded the Confederation of Passenger Transport UK’s prestigious ‘Coach Friendly Towns, Cities and Villages Status’.

The status, established in 2003, recognises the work and commitment that towns, cities and villages have made to providing coach operators, along with their drivers and passengers, a warm welcome and easy access to key visitor attractions and facilities in their area.

Neighbouring Llandudno was awarded the status in November in 2014.

Commenting, Alf Scrimgour, CPT’s Tourism Executive, says: “These three tourist locations in north Wales, which are all part of the Conwy Development Board, may all be very different in terms of what they have to offer visitors but they each make every effort to both attract and provide a warm welcome to visiting coach groups.

“I am delighted to see that Llandudno continues to go from strength-to-strength, further improving its offer to coaches and coach parties. Despite being much smaller resorts, Conwy and Betws-y-Coed have shown a real understanding of the requirements of coaches and coach groups by developing suitably located coach parking, pick-up and drop-off points close to key attractions and facilities. I have been particularly impressed by the ongoing commitment of the Conwy Development Board in maintaining and improving the overall offer to visiting coach groups.”

Accepting the status on behalf of Conwy, Betws-y-Coed and Llandudno, Councillor Graham Rees, Chairman of the Conwy Strategic Management Board says: “Coach passenger travel is a growing and valued market segment to the tourism industry in Conwy County, and a vital income source to accommodation and service providers of the county. It provides the county with an environmentally friendly mode of transport for visitors especially as they travel around the beauty spots of the county.

“The value of the CPT Coach Friendly status has been clearly identified in our 2015-18 Destination Conwy Action Plan. We see it as a great honour and are very proud to be the first UK destination to have three of its resorts achieve this status. We will strive to have our other resorts and attractions achieve the required standards to obtain these and similar awards.”

Conwy and Betws-y-Coed bring the number of recipients of the award to 27.

Conwy Castle
Conwy and Betws-y-Coed have been awarded the CPT’s ‘Coach Friendly Cities, Towns & Villages Status’. Conwy Castle stands guard over the town