those of you who have been with me from the beginning know that each year my oldest and I go away for her birthday last year we went to London this year we have just come back from Manchester and Liverpool where we did shopping sightseeing and we saw Jessie J in concert.
The whole weekend has been absolutely fabulous!
ok lets start at beginning ^_^
very early saturday morning we meet our coach and take our seats for our wonderful weekend, the coach soon fills up with very excited Jessie J fans and the atmosphere is catching we are all hyper excited and the coach tour is run by National Holidays the same as our holiday last year, the coach though does leave a lot to be desired it is neither comfortable or have enough leg room, my daughter sat scrunched up for the whole journey and the driver is more interested in herding us on and off like cattle than in making any kind of jovial atmosphere, but luckily we had enough excitement between us to look past the obvious shortcomings, I would not recommend for disabled people either as you know I am disabled and even though I booked and paid for a seat close to the front on account of my mobility problems they still took away my original seat gave it to someone else and then placed me halfway down which made it difficult and stressful for me each time we had to troop on and off so no I would not recommend this company.
We had one stop on the journey and then were taken to the Trafford Center in Manchester not a nice place very big, very expensive, and filled with plastic ‘carvings’, faux paintings and even the attempt at replicating Chinatown was as good as your average papier mache village front -bloody awful
but we didn’t care we were going to see Jessie J
I am only giving this much detail so that anyone else thinking about booking with them well hopefully I save them the money and time, and anyone thinking of visiting Trafford Centre -well don’t – is my advice
we luckily didn’t have to stay too long here but personally I and others on the tour agreed, that it would have been far better to not have this stop but to have gone straight on to the hotel.
Unfortunately the coach company and its driver saw fit to not only give us very little time to get ready for the concert but also the meal we had paid for we were unable to have as there wasn’t enough time to eat that and get ready.
I will never book this company again for this sort of event they simply have no concern for the customer, and bear in mind they charged me nearly £300 for this! I was not impressed.
So the room well that was just plain insulting; I had paid for a double room I was given a room with a double bed and a sofa bed. Needless to say it was a very uncomfortable night.
The hotel which resembled a council offices, had awful service only two members of staff bothered to help me even though it was obvious I was disabled and struggling, the rest ignored me and chose to sit around doing nothing, the hotel was the Ramada Encore Hotel the view was of some kind of pipes or boilers or something hideous and again I would not recommend this hotel to anyone travel a bit further and find a premier inn or something this place was awful unhelpful ignorant there was nothing in the bathroom no shampoo soap not even a bath a shower that was badly designed got water everywhere, I will never stay there again. Apart from not being given an evening meal which I had paid for- the seating was awful, being placed next to strangers, there were absolutely no tables for just two people and not given any alternative, and the food was a joke! I had attempted to stay for the starter but the start consisted of three wafer thin slices of melon – really if you blinked you missed it, I warned people not to sneeze or I would never see my starter again.
But the best part of the night was about to happen so after being dumped in Manchester by the coach driver without any direction we had to find where the concert was and make our own way in there. which was very stressful none of us had been to Manchester and no one knew where to go.
Luckily though Jessie J was super excellent!
again we were put right up high in the seating a treacherous place for someone disabled- it was like the company had a plan to seriously injure me or worse- however my fighting spirit and sheer excitement at seeing Jessie J took over and somehow made it up to my seat and this was actually quite a good view as you can see we were side on and high up, so people on the stage were tiny but the evening began with a young lass singing unfortunately can’t remember her name but she was good and then the band Lawson the official support band came on and they were very good.
I will put up the videos I took but the quality is pretty bad apart from the fact my poor camera is old not coping very well it decided to refuse to work with any place that was too light ^_^ and sulked whenever the focus used ^_^ so really the videos just kind of prove we were there and not any good if you want to hear or see the music, here though for now are some pictures not the best but well its what we got ok^_^
Jessie J was totally fantastic! she has a very powerful voice and sang her heart out and danced all over, and best of all for those near the front of stage she was tactile and inclusive – it must have been a great treat for them, not only was she high fiving them but let one young girl sing a chorus into the mic and another she posed for a quick picture I can imagine they were buzzing for days^_^ each song she sang superbly and in between she had made a recording which was played linking each set with some lovely words along the lines of positive affirmation messages; things like believe in yourself, stay strong, be good to yourself, you can achieve what you put your mind too, in all everyone was very happy; she put on a good show and instead of going off then coming back she said forget that and just sang us extra songs ^_^ a lovely girl, a brilliant singer and she was an absolute star.
After my rotten night on the sofa bed we went for breakfast which was another exercise in insulting disabled people, well done ramada encore I didn’t think it was possible to get any worse but ramada encore just go that bit further to make a disabled person feel even worse, It is obvious I am physically disabled ,for a start off there is the crutches and guess what-yup it was a buffet breakfast, tell me silly national holidays how do I carry a breakfast when on crutches? The first member of staff looked at me, then the crutches and said ‘room number’ which was given then she wandered off.
Now luckily my daughter was around and she got me my breakfast and another member of staff saw me struggling at the pour your own orange bit and actually came over and helped. perhaps she wasn’t staff but someone from another group she was nice though unlike the staff.
But here comes another good bit ^_^ on the way home the coach stopped in Liverpool for a short while and I had never been and was a tad excited, Liverpool is a great place and if you get the chance go there, I would have loved to cross the mersey-on a ferry no less- but not enough time, we were dropped near Albert Dock and lucky me I found the proper original The Cavern! yup the very place where The Beatles played all them years ago! major woot and woohoo!
The time went all too quickly but was very happy we had both set foot on the very ground where The Beatles had been and it had started to hail and rain and we dashed back to the coach and were homeward bound. A wonderful weekend thanks to Lawson, Jessie J and The Beatles, next time though we book another coach service another hotel and everything will be superb ^_^