The new season of Baynes Tours . . .

For well over a decade now, building on the excellent reputation that Fergus Sandison established in a carefully honed niche within Baynes Travel for friendliness, cheerfulness, and a frisson of adventure in every offering, the Baynes Tours, this year concentrating on Day Trips, are becoming an institution in the hearts and minds of loyal customers. The tagline invented by Fergus: ‘More than a tour . . . always an adventure’ has been replaced these days with ‘Making memories’, but both are surely apposite, correct and accounted for by the sheer joy that tourers experience together.

The 2019 brochure is a double-page spread of destination delights, kicking off with the Harrogate Spring Flower Show on the 27th of April, and concluding with the Beauty and the Beast pantomime on Saturday evening the 18th of January 2020. In between are dozens of wonderful excursions, most of them ‘tried and tested’ over the years, all so wonderful that some clients book eight or more at one time, spending their entire holiday budget so they can be in the company of friendly folk.

At the outset, as I recall, the Baynes Tours were invented to maintain the regular full-time coach drivers during the school holidays, but over the years they’ve developed in response to market demand to encompass three quarters of the year. And most of the trips, as Margaret Stonehouse noted in a little chat on Sunday morning, are to northern destinations. Well, insofar as anything from York northwards is ‘northern’, of course. All of this season’s destinations are brilliantly described, as well, on the BaynesTravel Tours section of the company’s website, which also, incidentally, features a downloadable booking form for convenience.

I asked about the pickups, as the brochure often notes simultaneous times for places like Allendale and Haltwhistle, or Hexham and Allendale, for example. “Ah,” Margaret explained, “We’ve invented feeder buses to pick travellers up at these destinations and deliver them to a central coach waiting to speed them on their way.” With experience, of course, these day trips have become that much more logistically smooth and hassle-free. You book, jump on your bus, and leave everything else to the drivers, until you’re delivered back to the drop-off point at the end of a cheery day out.

This year the spreadsheet analysis shows that the coaches are filling up even faster than last, so early booking (enquiries for brochure and booking forms can also be made to: or 01434 683269) is rather essential to avoid disappointment. Also, news about the day trips and any additions or corrections, or just happy blurb about the upcoming offerings, are listed on the Baynes Travel facebook page.

I know that local groups (like members of the Knitting and Crochet group eager to attend the Woolfest Show in Cumbria, for example, or the Gardening Society’s anticipated bespoke garden visits) and individuals alike are delighted to avail themselves of the excellent opportunities offered by the big Baynes coaches here in the very middle of the village, as it were.

So the Baynes Travel enterprise grows surely and steadily, with constant vigilance and self-assuredness, and not a little self-deprecating humour, which keeps everything firmly grounded, and the whole effort is truly very much appreciated by its loyal clients.

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