You wrote last week about SNCF running low-cost departures from suburban stations. There is a precedent in this country. In, I think, the late 1970s, British rail ran a regular low-cost, all pre-booked train from Finsbury Park [the first stop going north from London King's Cross] to the north-east. My late mother, living in Wallington in south London, used it to go to a college reunion in Durham.
Welcome to Heathrow?
My wife, two children and I returned to Heathrow Terminal 3 last Thursday after spending three fantastic weeks in Australia plus a night and a morning at Changi in Singapore. The stark contrast between Changi airport and returning to Heathrow was almost comical. After leaving behind a butterfly atrium, koi pond, waterfalls, orchid displays, and many tropical plants, we were greeted at Terminal 3 by the most depressing corridors and one half-dead 4ft palm tree. There must be a fair number of visitors who arrive in our green and pleasant land suitably underwhelmed.
The Games were a success; tourism was boosted across Greater London, if not in the West End. Trust me, I spoke to enough "real people" face to face in the last few weeks.
Prague for hedonists
Café Slavia is definitely worth a visit. Considering the location, the food and drink is not exorbitant. Grab a seat at the far end, where the views over to the Lesser Quarter and Prague Castle are wonderful.
Café Savoy, on the other side of the bridge, was recently restored. It also does fantastic breakfasts.
The third member of this trio is Café Louvre – another classic Central European café