Couriers J and M are relieved to be checked in at Calais. When it all seemed to be going so well, we were struck from behind when we weren’t looking!

It turns out that the duty vet at the Greek border inspection post (BIP) omitted to do the electronic entry which would have produced another piece of paperwork that would have cleared our entry into the EU.

Because that wasn’t done, when we sent our Annexe 1 entry to ferry company P&O, copied to Defra, it turned out we weren’t on the system, so Defra were somewhat surprised.

The Greek BIP’s omission meant that, officially, we’d entered the EU without the right paperwork, and so theoretically all the pets should go into quarantine.

Fortunately, Defra gave us the sanction to ‘sort it out’. Which we did.

So yesterday we spent time on the phone talking via an interpreter who barely understood us to the government vet at the Peplos BIP; then reporting back to Defra.

We found blank versions of the ‘missing’ paperwork online, completed them and emailed them to our friendly Greek vet.

By this morning the vet had retrospectively completed the electronic entry, signed, stamped and initialled it, and faxed it back to us and Defra, in Greek!

We assume someone in the Defra office understood it all, as late this morning we were given clearance to leave Calais.

We already have a bit of a reputation at the P&O freight office for not having ‘normal’ freight. So there were smiles and bonjours, then it was ‘bon voyage’ as they heaved a sign of relief that it had all gone smoothly!

Calais check-in