Category Archives: Just For Fun

Title: Family Road Trip Playlist

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Summary: It can be difficult to please everyone when it comes to the music played in the car. Save yourself a headache and have everyone bopping along to this super family friendly playlist!

Meta Title: Family Road Trip Playlist

Meta Description: Something to please all the family on the road!

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A little bit of something for everyone, this playlist is a road trip necessity!

 

The Beatles – Drive My Car

Van Morrison – Brown Eyed Girl

Pharrell Williams – Happy

The Jackson 5 – ABC

Aretha Franklin – Respect

Sheryl Crow – All I Wanna Do

Katrina and The Waves – Walking On Sunshine

Journey – Don’t Stop Believin’

Taylor Swift – Shake It Off

Justin Timberlake – CAN’T STOP THE FEELING

Steppenwolf – Born To Be Wild

The Beatles – Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da

Aerosmith – Walk This Way

Randy Newman – You Got A Friend In Me

Katy Perry – Firework

Imagine Dragons – Thunder

Miley Cyrus – Party In The USA

Justin Bieber – Sorry

 

Author: Bristol Street Motors

Title: 5 Incredible Road Trips From Around The World

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Summary: You don't have to be a wanderer at heart to enjoy a road trip, you just need to be able to drive. Grab a cuppa and take a look at some of the most magnificent trails in the world!

Meta Title: 5 Incredible Road Trips From Around The World

Meta Description: 5 of the best road trips from around the world

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There is nothing better than packing the car with your favourite people and things, and heading off on an adventure. Here are some of the most beautiful, exhilarating road trips in the world, in no particular order!

 

The Wild Atlantic Way – West Coast Of Ireland

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At a staggering 2,500km, the Wild Atlantic Way is not only one of the most beautiful road trips in the world, it’s also the longest! Taking anywhere from 2 to 4 weeks, this trip will show you enormous sea cliffs, gorgeous beaches and fantastic culture. Make sure to check out Donegal headlands, Slieve League coast and Yeats Country for the poets amongst you!

The Ring Road – Iceland

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Having done snippets of this one myself, I can tell you it is not to be missed! The sheer size of the famous waterfalls, like Gulfoss, Seljalandsfoss and Skogafoss will have you astounded, not to mention the wild Icelandic countryside. You can tailor the trip to last anywhere from a few days to 2 weeks. Amazing.

Cabot Trail – Canada

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This stunning trail is packed with activities come rain or shine. In the winter months, you can snowmobile or take part in cross-country skiing and there is horseback riding and whale watching in the warmer months. Not to mention the unbelievable coastal hikes and old-growth forests to explore. Who has the car keys??

North Coast 500 – Scotland

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If you live in the UK, you don’t have to travel very far to see some beautiful scenery on a road trip. Bonny Scotland is home to the North Coast 500, where you’ll see historic castles, coastal walks, scattered whiskey distilleries as well as the chance to see the Northern Lights! I’ll pack the car.

South Island – New Zealand

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Much further afield, exploring the South Island in New Zealand will have you trekking varying landscapes from mountains to sprawling countryside. It takes about 4 weeks to travel around the whole island and there are places not to be missed, such as Marlborough Sounds, Abel Tasman National Park and Golden Bay, Lake Tekapo and Mount Cook (worth a Google at the very least!)

Author: Bristol Street Motors

Title: What should I listen to during my commute?

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Summary: Whether you drive, take a train or walk to work, we have a few suggestions on how to pass the time!

Meta Title: What should I listen to during my commute?

Meta Description: Things to pass the time on your way to work!

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commute

PODCASTS
Podcasts have proved to be super beneficial as listeners tend to be more imaginative and a better listener. Plus learning things is always a win!

Where?  BBC, iTunes and Spotify to name a few!

MUSIC
If music is more your thing, you’ll be glad to know not only does listening to music lower stress, it also elevates your mood while driving and strengthens your memory! You’ll arrive at work raring to go!

Where? Apple Music, Spotify, Tidal, Soundcloud plus many more!

LANGUAGE
Learning a language will not only impress your friends but it will increase your confidence, boost your cognitive function and is great if you like to travel Sign us up!

Where? Duolingo, Babbel, Memrise with lots more available on the t’internet

AUDIO BOOKS
Reading is a fantastic way to spend your time but when you need to keep your eyes on the road or in the direction you are going, audio books are the heroes you need! Plus they help with pronunciation, increase reading accuracy and expand your vocabulary.

Where? Audible, Amazon, iTunes, Kobo are just some of the ways to can listen to audio books on the go!

No matter what you choose to listen to, you can say goodbye to boring commutes! Now if only we could do something about the traffic…

Author: Bristol Street Motors

Title: The Most Unusual Driving Laws from Around the World

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Summary: We all have to abide by the laws of the road - they are there to keep us safe after all. However, there are a few from around the globe that are questionable!

Meta Title: The Most Unusual Driving Laws from Around the World

Meta Description: Unusual driving laws from around the world

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In Thailand, it is illegal to drive shirtless and you could end up with a warning or a ticket!

If you are driving in Denmark, you must check for sleeping children under your car before setting off

It’s illegal to have your sat-nav set up to alert you to speed cameras in France

In Italy, driving in certain historic zones without a permit is illegal

Make sure you have a packet of mints if you are in Ontario! You are not allowed in a taxi with bad breath!

In Manila, the number of days you can drive is limited depending on the last 4 digits of your number plate

It is illegal to urinate in public in the UK,  unless you are by the rear wheel, touching your car!

You must have a breathalyser in your car at all times when driving in France

Splashing a pedestrian is illegal in both the UK  and Japan!

In Finland, all taxi drivers must have a licence to play recorded music whilst carrying passengers

Don’t forget to fill your tank before heading on the Autobahn in Germany. It’s illegal to stop, even if you run out of fuel!

In Denver, Colorado it is illegal to drive a black car on Sunday (although I don’t think it’s enforced all that much!)

Make sure your car is sparkling before driving in Russia – it is illegal to drive around in a dirty car!

In California, it is illegal to jump from a car travelling at 65 mph…just in case you were wondering

Shhh! Slamming your car door is prohibited in Switzerland

In Massachusetts, it’s illegal to operate a car with a gorilla in the back. Of course!

In Macedonia, you need to appoint a designated driver AND designated front seat passenger as both have to be sober!

 

 

 

 

 

*Some of these may or may not be true.

Author: Bristol Street Motors

Title: The Lowdown on the Best and Worst Motorway Service Stations in the UK

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Summary: The results are in from Transport Focus and we can now reveal the best and worst motorway service stations in the UK! Rather handy if you are planning a road trip!

Meta Title: The Lowdown on the Best and Worst Motorway Service Stations

Meta Description: A commentary on the best and worst service stations as reported by Transport Focus

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Whether taking a short trip or heading out on the road for a longer stint, business or leisure, many of us will have had the experience of a motorway service station.

However, gone are the days of Wimpy and Little Chef! Now you can expect super modern service stations, boasting the likes of M&S, Costa, Nandos and Waitrose. Nice!

In fact 53% of people surveyed felt that introducing well known brands made service stations better, with only 2% thinking it made them worse.

Satisfaction levels overall were very high, with 92% of visitors satisfied, of which 62% were very satisfied. With that being said, the main improvement was value for money.

In terms of accessibility, 90% of visitors with a disability were satisfied with their experience and 70% felt they were well catered for, which was a decrease from 82% the previous year.

In terms of reasons for visiting the motorway service area (MSA), the main reasons were to use the toilet, get food and drink and take a break from driving. One in four drivers arrived feeling stressed, tired and/or frustrated yet significantly, one in 20 visitors reported feeling stressed, tired and/or frustrated when leaving the MSA. Taking breaks is so important!

In fact, visiting an MSA saw 84% of visitors leaving in a positive mood compared to 59% on arrival. Amazing what a nice cuppa and stretching your legs can do!

So let’s get to what we are all here for…the best…

Norton Canes (M6 Toll) – 100%
Stafford Soutbound (M6) – 99%
Wetherby (A1(M)) – 99%
Hilton Park Southbound (M6) – 99%
Corley Southbound (M6) – 99%

And the worst!

Thurrock* (M25) – 68%
Toddington Southbound* (M1) – 72%
Southwaite Northbound (M6) – 80%
Newport Pagnell South (M1) – 81%
Bridgwater (M5) – 81%

(*It is worth noting that these stations were undergoing refurbishment at the time the survey was carried out!)

Author: Bristol Street Motors

Title: Accessible Tech: Voice Automation and Disability

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Summary: Have you heard about the Amazon Echo or the Google Home, but aren't really sure what they can do for you? Read about how technology is beginning to open up a whole new world of independence for disabled people, within their homes.

Meta Title: Accessible Tech: Voice Automation and Disability

Meta Description: Technology that can help disabled people in their homes

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Unrecognizable senior woman in a wheelchair with tablet at home. An elderly woman sitting at the table.

 

However you feel about technology, whether you are completely tech-savvy or just starting out, there’s no doubt it has definitely enhanced all of our lives.

We can reach out to friends and family halfway across the world, we can set reminders and alarms, and we can surf the web and order to our doors without ever having to visit a store!

Products like Amazon’s Echo (or mini Echo Dot) and Google’s Home have taken technology a step further and begun to spark futuristic ideas of an almost entirely automated home. Scary as this seems, the futuristic little pods can be used to complete even the most basic of tasks. For those with any disability or mobility issues, these products open up a new world to all.

For those unfamiliar, the Amazon Echo and Google Home are little pieces of kit that will fit in the palm of your hand (they look like a round speaker). You can set them up anywhere in the home, and with an internet connection they can do just about anything you can think of, using voice activation.

Typically priced around £100, or sometimes less, products such as these are increasingly affordable and have an array of apps or ‘skills’  which are in constant development, and the apps available continue to grow.

If you struggle with using a laptop or phone, one of these products allow for easy life-administration; you can set reminders, create shopping and to-do lists, track your shopping, dictate lists and generally use any search function you’d expect from Google, or any similar search engine.

For those with visual impairment, audible books can be accessed. You can ask Alexa or Google Home what time it is, what the latest news articles are, and check your calendar for your appointments that day. You can play messages and make calls, without having to scroll through your phone.

That’s not all as other mobility issues can be eased with this impressive technology. Daily tasks which can seem daunting or frustrating when you use a wheelchair, can be instructed to Alexa or Google Home with a simple voice command. When set up, the device can control elements in your home such as lighting, or even be set up with smart blinds to open and close as needed. For even more bold additions to the ‘smart home’ set up, you can lock doors, open and close the garage door, set and adjust the thermostat and control the TV.

As we move towards a more inclusive world in every sense, innovative products like these will continue to bring a level of ease to the lives of wheelchair users and those with other disabilities.

Author: Emma Russell

Title: The Super Catchy Summer Driving Playlist

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Summary: Everyone knows there is nothing better than getting in the car, winding those windows down, popping the sun roof and taking a drive, especially when the sun is shining. We've taken the plunge and compiled a catchy playlist for your driving merriment (but are under no illusion it won't be everyone's cup of tea - it's okay, we still love you)

Meta Title: The Super Catchy Summer Driving Playlist

Meta Description: Music to drive your way through the summer to!

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Hurrah! We are smack dab in the middle of summer and it is GLORIOUS. Check out our driving playlist for dreamy lyrics and marvellous melodies!

 

 

If you don’t have a car to listen to this playlist in, or you want a new one, have a little look at what we offer! You’ll be spoilt for choice!

Author: Bristol Street Motors

Title: Join Bristol Street Versa at Motability’s The Big Event

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Summary: Join Bristol Street Versa for the UK's biggest Motability event

Meta Title: Join Bristol Street Versa at Motability’s The Big Event

Meta Description: Join Bristol Street Versa at Motability’s The Big Event

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Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles at the Big Event

Join Bristol Street Versa at Motability’s The Big Event at NEC Birmingham this week on Friday 6th and Saturday 7th of July.

Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle specialists Bristol Street Versa are taking part in the nation’s biggest Motability event at the NEC Birmingham.

On this Friday and Saturday you’ll be able to meet and speak with our expert advisors on all things Versa and learn more about our high-quality WAV (Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle) conversions.

Whether you are looking to renew your Motability lease with a medium to large WAV, or because your needs have simply changed, we will be on hand to provide expert and professional advice.

We’re experienced in converting, providing, and servicing a range of WAVs in the medium to large category, with offerings from Ford, Volkswagen and Renault. We keep the customer at the heart of all that we do, and our dedicated team are always on hand to ensure we are keeping you going, and that your vehicle is always running smoothly.

Your peace of mind is our priority.

We may be visiting an event in the Midlands, but the beauty of the Bristol Street Versa offering is that our mobility experts offer demonstrations and fantastic customer service nationwide.

At the show, you can book a home demonstration for any of the WAVs in our range. We would be delighted to bring a vehicle to you and demonstrate the features on a no-obligation basis. It’s important for our service to be as accessible as is necessary and ensure that ultimately the vehicle you choose absolutely suits your specific needs and requirements.

Along with us, we’ll be taking two of our most popular vehicles to the show; the VW Transporter and the VW Caddy. They’ll be available for you to view and experience demonstrations on-site. Our team of experienced advisors will also be on hand to answer any questions you may have.

The fantastic news is that the event (and event parking) is completely free, free refreshments are also available, with plenty of distractions for any younger family members!

Find out more HERE

 

Author: Versa

Title: Accessible Tech: Top 4 Apps for Wheelchair Users

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Summary: We take a look at some of our favourite apps for wheelchair users.

Meta Title: Accessible Tech - Top 4 Apps for Wheelchair Users

Meta Description: Accessible Tech - Top 4 Apps for Wheelchair Users

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Man in wheelchair using a tablet to access an app

Modern smartphones and tablets are great for keeping in touch with friends and family, and keeping us entertained – but the huge choice of apps available means they can actually be useful beyond that.

Take a look at some of our favourite apps for wheelchair users below.

Wheelmap

When you use a wheelchair, planning your days out can be a bit of a gamble without knowing what access is going to be like.

Wheelmap is available as an app, or you can visit their website here. Places are added and rated by app users, meaning the reviews are reliable and honest.

Almost 600,000 public places are listed on the app worldwide, with up to 300 added each day. A variety of places are included, as anyone can mark almost any point of interest. This ranges from bus stations, restaurants, cinemas and banks through to Government offices.

The useful tags work in an easy to use traffic light system (Green, Amber and Red) and indicate levels of accessibility.

– Green indicates full accessibility – for example, ground level, step-free throughout (or lift access) and accessible toilet facilities if they are available.

– Amber indicates some accessibility – for example, one stage maximum entrance, most of the rooms on ground level.

– Red indicates the place is not accessible at all.

The great thing about Wheelmap is that ratings can be added at any time by any user. Further, as it is not just limited to facilities, it’s a great tool to enhance everyday life.

Wheelmap is available to download from the iTunes App Store for iOs or Play for Android and Windows Phones.  Alternatively, you can visit Wheelmap.org from your device or desktop.

Inclusive Britain

For everything a little closer to home, Inclusive Britain is an expansion of the popular Inclusive London app.

Inclusive Britain also lives both as an app and as a website, with the added capability of adding reviews, where you can comment not only on accessibility but on all areas of a service or venue.

Instead of the map functionality of Wheelmap, Inclusive Britain takes the form of a directory, with everything from hotels, healthcare, nature reserves, post offices and tourist attractions. You can search by postcode or by accessible features, making it efficiently concise if there is something in particular you are looking for.

You can send any details to your mobile phone to store for later reference, and you can also take advantage of the ‘Meet Me’ tool which aids with arranging activities with friends and family.

Pick up Inclusive London or Inclusive Britain on the iTunes App Store or register for the online directory at InclusiveBritain.com.

Apple Dictation

For iPhone or iPad users, Apple provide a free dictation tool: Apple Dictation. If you’re juggling a few things at once, and want to make hands-free notes on the move this is perfect (providing you’re connected with mobile data or Wi-Fi).

If you have iPhone 6s or newer, Enhanced Dictation is also available for unlimited dictation. Enabled in System Preferences, the Siri ding will indicate that you can start dictation. This requires no internet connection and text appears in real time. There’s no limit to how much you can dictate and has a startling accuracy level.

If you need quick and easy dictation to communicate or set reminders, without the fuss of apps, Apple capabilities mean that you can simply just ask Siri to save a note or send a message and dictate the text straight into your mic.

Apple Dictation supports 31 languages including English, Arabic, Chinese, Polish, Spanish, and Korean.

UberACCESS

The taxi-summoning app Uber now has an option for ‘UberACCESS’, created specifically for wheelchair users.

Formerly UberWAV, the app specialises in rear-entry taxis, allowing the wheelchair passenger to be forward-facing.  All UberACCESS drivers ensure safety and comfort during the journey, having received Disability Equality Training from Transport for All.

So, all you need is the Uber app, which then allows you to select UberACCESS as an option when requesting a taxi. The beauty of Uber is that the journey is paid via the app, which saves trawling to cashpoints if they are not convenient. All drivers and vehicles are logged and nominated friends or family can track your journeys for additional peace of mind.

For added reassurance, the journey only begins once you and your wheelchair are safely secured in the vehicle, eliminating any worries when it comes to totting up the fare.

UberACCESS operates in London, Manchester, Newcastle, Leeds and Liverpool.

 

Author: Versa

Title: Versa Welcomes Former Army Captain as General Manager

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Summary: Bristol Street Versa is proud to appoint our new General Manager, Cameron Baldry, who joined our team back in January.

Meta Title: Versa Welcomes Former Army Captain | Bristol Street Versa

Meta Description: Bristol Street Versa is proud to appoint our new General Manager, Cameron Baldry, who joined our team back in January.

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Bristol Street Versa - GM

Bristol Street Versa is proud to appoint our new General Manager, Cameron Baldry, who joined our team back in January.

Bristol Street Versa is keen to have Cam on-board to utilise the leadership and people skills he gained during his time in the Army, and as it marks an exciting new era in the business. The career move has not only provided Cam with a new challenge, but also afforded this family man the opportunity to spend time with his wife and one-year-old son.

“I was looking for a new challenge and the position at Bristol Street Versa seemed like the perfect opportunity. Vertu Motors has such a fantastic reputation for how it treats its customers and colleagues, and it is a pleasure to work for them. Bristol Street Versa has a unique customer base, no day is the same and we are making a real difference to people’s every-day lives. I find that really rewarding. I have a motivated team of colleagues behind me, so I am looking forward to passing on my knowledge, and I’m eager to learn a few things from them too.”

With over 25 years’ worth of Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle conversion expertise, Bristol Street Versa are delighted to help make positive changes in the wheelchair user community with their enduring customer service, transforming vehicles to incredible transport solutions.

Author: Versa