Once again I find myself having lunch at Burger King in Liverpool John Lennon Airport at the start of a weekend break. This time I am flying to the Island of Jersey, just off the coast of northern France, for a stay based at the Premier Inn in St Helier. The flight went well and I am soon on the bus to St Helier, the capital of Jersey. This bus is a double decker and I entered at the middle doors like wheelchairs do on London buses so was unable to pay my fare. I later enquired about this in the bus terminal and was told that wheelchair users are supposed to pay the fare but if it is a bus where wheelchair users enter at the middle doors (used only on some journeys that go to the airport) it is at the discretion of the driver whether he comes to collect your fare on not; if he is busy he may not.
On arrival at St Helier bus station I discovered that my hotel was just a short walk away on a parallel street. It was centrally located and close to amenities, there was a Co-op on the ground floor and a fish and chip shop directly opposite the entrance, among other places. You can read my review of the Premier Inn. After a swift check in I was shown to my room where I used the tea and coffee making facilities before retiring for the night as I was feeling the after effects of my dialysis treatment that morning.
The next morning I awoke to glorious sunshine and as I went out of my hotel I discovered that upon turning left there was a French Festival and turning right was the St Helier Festival. I went to the left through the French Festival as that was the way I arrived and had seen there was a Post Office so wanted to buy some postcards and stamps. Continuing on I arrived at the Cock and Bottle pub where I had a glass (or two) of Liberation Ale whilst writing my postcards. Upon entering there was just a small area with a table before you have to go up a stair or two to get to the bar, but I was close enough to speak to the staff and they brought my drink to my table. There was also lots of tables and chairs outside in Royal Square where you could sit; I have read on the internet they have outdoor heaters and can provide blankets here but they were not needed this weekend as the weather was almost Mediterranean.
In Royal Square I found a post box to send my cards and then returned to the French Festival and looked around the various stalls, many which were selling French foods such as honey, crepes, saucisson sec (a French dry sausage like a salami). The stall had various types of saucisson selling at £12 for three so I bought a pure pork one, a donkey one, and one with herbs.
Passing by my hotel I then went to the St. Helier Festival, this one was more like a carnival with places to sit whilst eating and drinking, fairground rides, and a stage with entertainment. After wandering around for some time I decided to have a steak burger with a can of Fosters lager. When I had finished this I spent the next couple of hours watching various singers on the stage before deciding to find something more to eat.
I returned to the French Festival and got one of the crepes I had spotted earlier, I chose one with lemon juice and took it back to my hotel room to eat, it was so nice I nearly went back for another but was quite tired after the days events so rested on my bed watching tv until I felt hungry again!
About 10pm I decided to try out Hector’s Fish and chips which was directly opposite the entrance to my hotel. I got a fried half chicken with chips to take back to my room, I also called in to the Co-op the other side of my hotel to buy some Jersey milk and a box of teabags. I had used up the supply provided by the hotel and thought it would be better to get a pint of ‘proper’ milk instead of the little portions hotels supply. Chicken and chips with a couple of mugs of tea rounded off my day nicely. 🙂
Late on the Sunday morning I went for a walk in the direction of the seafront where I found the Liberty Wharf Shopping Centre to look around. There was a Costa in it where I had a latte with a sandwich and some cake. All I seem to be doing on this trip is eating and drinking!
Today was as warm and sunny as yesterday so then I went and sat out in Liberation Square for awhile. In the centre of Liberation Square is a life sized sculpture, surrounded by water and fountains, celebrating the liberation from the Nazi Occupation during WWII. I now had just a few hours left before my flight back to Liverpool so decided to visit the Jersey Museum.
The Jersey Museum is just around the corner from The Lamplighter pub near the bus station. The Jersey Museum is on several floors but is wheelchair accessible with a lift to all floors, next door to it is a Merchants House that is included in the ticket price and on each floor of the museum there is access to the corresponding floor of the Merchants house. Only the top floor of the Merchants House in not wheelchair accessible because it is one storey higher than the museum. Some of the doorways in the Merchants House may be too narrow for larger electric wheelchairs. Time was now getting on and I had to get a bus back to the airport.
Check in again went smoothly and I was soon in the departure lounge of Jersey airport. Like in the Isle of Man where you can buy the local kippers in departures here you could buy Jersey potatoes, except today they were sold out. This airport has a ramp for boarding the aircraft so wheelchair users don’t have to rely on an ambulift coming to help you aboard, I have never used one of these before only heard about them in other places.
I had a lovely weekend in Jersey and recommend it to anyone, I hope to return someday and see more of the island and visit the zoo too.