The Scottish seabird centre organise boat trips to land on the Bass Rock. I was lucky enough to go on one of these trips in July 2009 so this year I tried to repeat the experience. I tried to land both in June and then in August of this year. Unfortunately my experience was very like that of Govag Yessir. Both trips were cancelled at the last minute when I had incurred considerable expense in paying for a train from London first to North Berwick (June) and then to Dunbar (August). In addition I had to pay twice for accommodation. None of these expenses were refundable. On neither occasion did the weather forecast or conditions on the day begin to justify the cancellation of the trip. On both days I had clear blue skies and calm seas. Indeed for the trip in June not only were there fishing boats near the rock at the time I was supposed to sail, but also the Centre's trip to the Isle of May left a few hours later and went right past the Bass Rock. The conditions were no better then than when the trip to the Bass Rock was supposed to leave. It is a pity the Scottish Seabird Centre does not do more to make the trips reliable as on the one occasion when I was able to land (in 2009) I had a great time.
Like Govag Yessir my experience of last minute cancellation is very far from being unusual. Indeed the reputation of the centre is that cancellation is very frequent. I have heard this both from the various Bed and brekasfasts I have stayed at and from friends who have tried to do the same trip.This is a great shame as the attraction is well worth visiting and the staff working at the centre are very pleasant.
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