16 September 2013

Last updated 19:00 BST.

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Channel delays: Condor Ferries UK-Channel Islands services tomorrow rescheduled due to weather.

Weather alerts: Amber alert for heavy rain/storms southern Italy/Siciliy and western Greece.

Weather: Fine in Iberia/South of France/Turkey otherwise windy/rain/showers.

Traffic: see @DE_Traffic from 09:30 BST.

See Travel/Traffic/Weather for more.

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Back in blighty. Havr to hand it to P&O, we checked in and drove staright ontot he boat.

‘Twas a rough night in Dover. From mid-afternoon yesterday it was a bit blowy. By tea time the wind was so strong all three ferry operators suffered hour-long delays on services across the Dover Strait. Such is what you expect at this time of the year. All is calm now though the weather is expected to worsen again this week. Much more surprising yesterday was the traffic in northern Italy, by far the worst we’ve seen all summer. For several hours in the evening the entire westbound A14 between Rimini and Bologna was chock-a-block with slow and stationary traffic, 75 miles worth. Was it a freaky one-off as storms hit the west coast, or are recession hit Italians taking their holidays – much – later this year?

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The Range Rover Hybrid Silk Trail Expedition, Odessa-Astrakhan.

The trio of Range Rover Hybrids prototypes have just finished stage three of their journey from Solihull to Mumbai, India. Part of the new model’s final development phase, the expedition has covered 4,250 miles in 15 days via the Low Countries, Germany, Poland, Ukraine and Russia.

The trio of Range Rover Hybrids prototypes have just finished stage three of their journey from Solihull to Mumbai, India. Part of the new model’s final development phase, the expedition has covered 4,250 miles in 15 days via the Low Countries, Germany, Poland, Ukraine and Russia.

In the past week, the cars have driven 1,417miles from Odessa in Ukraine to Astrakhan in Russia via the Crimean Peninsula and the prairies and grasslands of the Russian Kalmykiya region. On rain washed mud tracks progress has inevitably slowed but the cars have really been put through their paces. The only damage so far has been one puncture and a cracked windscreen.

In the past week, the cars have driven 1,417miles from Odessa in Ukraine to Astrakhan in Russia via the Crimean Peninsula and the prairies and grasslands of the Russian Kalmykiya region. On rain washed mud tracks progress has inevitably slowed but the cars have really been put through their paces. The only damage so far has been one puncture and a cracked windscreen.

Astrakhan, located on 11 islands in the upper part of the Volga Delta, close to the Kazakstan border, is on the crossroads between Europe and Asia with the eastern influence clear to see. This week, the expedition will venture into the deserts of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan and then into Kyrgyzstan, accumulating another 2,000 miles on the Silk Route proper as it continues east into Asia.

Astrakhan, located on 11 islands in the upper part of the Volga Delta, close to the Kazakhstan border, is at the crossroads of Europe and Asia with the eastern influence clear to see. This week, the expedition will venture into the deserts of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan and then into Kyrgyzstan, 2,000 miles on the ancient Silk Routes proper as it continues east into Asia.

Click to see a rough route. Click to see the pictures from earlier in the trip.

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roundup – Portugal. As in Luxembourg and Turkey fuel prices have fallen in Portugal. Diesel is down to around €1.40 and unleaded 95 to €1.57. Switzerland. A convicted rapist on day release, alone with a female therapist, has been arrested at the German-Polish border near Dresden, four days after her body was found in woodland near Geneva. The man was reportedly still driving the therapist’s car.

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