STORY HIGHLIGHTS


500-SEAT Sightseeing boat launched in London

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Added On July 16, 2017

INTRO:
 
London's largest sightseeing vessel officially joined the Thames River Services fleet on Friday.
 
With more than 500 seats and at 36-meters long, the Thomas Doggett is set to provide a major boost to London tourism. 
 
LIFESTYLES has more.
 
PKG:
 
Operating from Westminster Pier to Thames Flood Barrier, the boat, which cost about 3.3 million U.S. dollars, is built for sightseeing, and has both open and covered decks.
 
It will provide four extra services a day to cope with the burgeoning demand for trips along the river. 
   
The boat has been five years in planning. It was completed in Holland after the hull was built in Wales. 
 
It has a spacious lower saloon and large upper deck. The heated saloon features comfortable seats and large panoramic windows offering the best views of London. 
 
The upper deck has bench seating and 360 degree views perfect for taking photos of the famous sights.
   
Thomas Doggett is fitted with a multilingual wi-fi commentary system, where passengers can link their smartphone to hear the tour in English, Spanish, French, German, Italian.
   
Also welcome will be the Chinese, with Lord Mayor of London, Andrew Charles Parmley saying that the city is open to tourists from the East.
   
SOUNDBITE: ANDREW CHARLES PARMLEY, The Lord Mayor of London
" I was in China over this year and met people in Tianjin, Beijing, Shanghai and can I say how important it is that we get closer to Chinese people. And this is a great time for UK and China relation. In addition, we welcome Chinese people to London. Let me reassure your viewers that despite a few terrorists and incidents recently, London is a very safe place to come and I do encourage people to come here and experience this great city for themselves for the first time."
   
The vessel has been named after the famous 17th century Irish actor Thomas Doggett, who started the Doggett Coat and Badge, a rowing race 302 years ago for young watermen who worked on the river.