Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Weather looks good so off we went again!

No date yet for Lizzies op, so as the weather looked set fair for the weekend, we decided on a short trip.  Settled on the Cotswolds again, so I rang Greenacres Farm CL to see if they had space, no luck there but their neighbouring CL, Greenacres had room. This site is the other side of the farmhouse and has hard standings, EHU and water on each pitch.
Lizzie had a blood test on Friday morning, so off for that, then into the wine merchants and Lidl for supplies, collect the caravan and we were away!  Zoe was at work so we left her a note to say that we would be back sometime!  As she was working all weekend, we knew the house was OK. Off up the A46, and to a burger van for lunch! Yum Yum!
A rather noisy run up to Bibury, as the steering pump is on its way out on the Freelander2, going to be replaced next week!  More expense!

Found the site easilly and pitched up!  Nice and warm, but too many wasps!  Pleasant evening with salmon done on the cadac.
Our Pitch

Saturday  started beautifully so after Brunch, it was into Cirencester for retail therapy!  Drove into the main street and unbelievably there was an empty parking space!  Parked up and discovered it was limited to one hour, unless you have a blue badge when you can park for three hours.So Lizzie put her blue badge in the window.Sometimes the badge is very useful!  Spent some pleasant time wandering the shops and Lizzie started on Christmas shopping!  Nothing like being organised!

Back for Dinner, prawn cocktail tonight followed by Steak!  Had to eat it inside as the wasps were a total menace. Discovered Mossie spirals in the cupboard, and wonder of wonders the wasps hated them.  When one flew into the awning they just did an immeadiate U turn and were gone.

Sunday was again a cracking day so it was down to Lechlade where the christmas shop was open!  More wonga spent by Lizzie!  I suspect that she thinks that I have personal money tree! I wish!
Decided on the traditional roast for dinner!  It really is quite easy in a caravan oven, just seems to take twice as long!  I don't mind watching things cook if I have a large glass of Pinot in my hand.  Dinner finished cooking and then the oven would not turn off, so I had to head for the main gas tap!   Thankgoodness for long term warranties. we are certainly getting our money's worth!

A couple of views of the site, unfortunately taken in the rain on Monday morning!

Then the weather broke!  It rained so hard on Sunday night!  Breakfast, for the first time ever was cooked on the hob in the caravan rather than on the Cadac or in the oven as it was still raining  Still tasted good though!  Then a gentle clear up, before heading back to storeage.

Would reccomend Greenacres CL and Greenacres Farm CL. Greenacres has nine pitches, although the 5 caravan rule is strictly enforced, so only 5 are in use at any one time.. This enables the owners to keep the site in tip top condition!

Where next?   Well watch this space!

Monday, 2 September 2013

Eastnor Land Rover Show 24th/25th August.

Friday morning dawned bright and clear, so with the caravan on the drive I was able to prepare it ready for or trip to Eastnor, which is less than an hour away from home.  This is a very different trip for us as there is no electric hook up.
Lizzie had a blood test in the morning, so that dealt with I loaded the Freelander2 with all the Landy Town stuff and off we went. Out through Wickwar and onto the M5 heading north. That was a mistake as the motorway was very busy in both directions. Only two junctions to go and we came off at Gloucester.

We soon arrived at Eastnor Castle site.  Last year we were on a very sloping site, this year we were in the next field which was flat. It was also very dry, unlike last year when it was a sea of mud.
The showground with Eastnor Castle in the background

Ian and Tina hda arrived first and we pitched in front of them. We were next to Manckester Land Rover Club, and Robert and Cathy were pitched beside us.

An evening of setting up the club stand and socialising followed.
Our Stand 

The show was open on Saturday and Sunday, and despite an iffy weather forecast everything went wel and it stayed fine.  There were a fair few visitors between 10.00am and 3.00pm. The arena had plenty going on, all Land Rover based, unlike other shows
Denty turned up on the Saturday evening and provided information for all of us.

Here follows a few of my highlights of the show!

Robert takes his Range Rover on the Twist off.

A replica of the original Centre steer Land Rover.
HUE.  One of the most famous Series 1's

Looks like fun to drive!

The show finished on Sunday evening, but we all stayed on until the Monday when we cleared up and left for home.

When we got home we had to totally empty the caravan, ready for it to for service the following morning.
We had intended crossing to France on the Thursday for a month, but with Lizzie having to have some hospital treatment that has had to be delayed for a while.

Salcombe. But this time with a difference!

The three J's, James, Jade and Jack asked me a couple of months ago if they could use the caravan in Salcombe so that they could have a summer holiday!  So after a lot of soul searching I agreed that they could borrow it, on pain of death by a thousand cuts if they damaged it!
So arrangements were made. Jade joined the caravan club, and a pitch was booked at Salcombe!  All was going well, and then they announced that Ami, James's sister and her boyfriend were joining them!
Anyway we agreed.

The J's were all so excited!

Jade started making innumerable lists of what was needed. Then it was agreed that James would go to Reading to collect Ami and Callum, whilst Jade and Jack would stay with us ready for an early start on the Monday morning!
So I was up with lark, as is my norm ready for an early depart.  Unbelievably everybody rose early and we departed at 09.30. As we wanted to get there as soon as possible I headed for the M5 at Cribbs Causeway, instead of driving down through Bristol to join it at Bridgewater.  We had a good run down and arrived on site at 1.30.  Even the drive along the narrow road from Kingsbridge to Slapton proved uneventful.  It is a very narrow road, that proves to be a test for anybody, and with a caravan in tow can be a real challenge!

When we arrived at the site the wardens were very welcoming. I had phoned before to explain what we would be doing and they were more than ok about it.  We had a quick look around the site and spotted that pitch 10 was available. This is possibly one of the largest pitches on the site, and would comfortably take the caravan, awning, pup tent and two vehicles.

So Lizzie and I set everything up, whilst Jade amused Jack.  James and the rest arrived a couple of hours later, having been held up in horrific traffic on the A303 near Stonehenge.

Well we gave them a run down of how everything worked and they went off to explore the site. Later they walked to beach past Slapton Ley.

Dinner was cooked, and then beds made and we all turned in.  Jack was in the caravan with us, whilst everyone else were in the tent.

Jack woke at about 5.00 so Jade let herself into the caravan and curled up with him on the bottom bunk.

Everyone was up and about quite early so I wandered down to the beach to collect the papers. Thenit was back to the caravan, where I cooked a full English breakfast for everybody!

Then after finally checking that they knew how everything worked, Lizzie and I had a final brew and we departed for home leaving our baby at their mercy!

Then next few day we worried. I did not sleep particularly well, but the dily reports from Jade seemed to indicate that all was well and that they were having lots of fun!

Slapton Sands at 6.00am

Roll on a week!

Sunday morning dawned bright and sunny and Lizzie and I set off down to retrieve our baby.  As luck would have it we were going to stay in the Caravan for a few days before driving home.

Well we got to the site and they were out, down on the beach.  Well the caravan was till stood up, the awning was there still.  A detailed inspection revealed that the caravan was immaculate. It was clean, tidy, they had swept it ou, and there were no dents, scrapes, scratches or anything broken.  Relief!!!!!

The happy campers returned an hour or so later.  Ok well done I said!   You have proved yourself, where will you be taking the caravan next, Oh and James, when you trade your car in get one that will tow the caravan!

They loaded up James's little car with the essentials, leaving most stuff with us, and they set off for home.

Lizzie and I stayed on the site, for the next few days before setting off for home, and then straight on to Eastnor castle for the Land Rover show.

On the Monday we went into Salcombe for morning coffee.  Excuse me for sharing some of the views.

Whilst we were at Start Bay we went into Kingsbridge on the bus.  An amazing trip on the top deck of the bus.  We even had the front seats so were able to see the skill of the driver as she navigated the narrow lanes.
One tip for anyone using this site is when you leave with the caravan on the back, wait for the bus to go past, and then follow it!  That way you get a clear road!

Sunday, 1 September 2013

Royal International Air Tattoo. Fairford

The Vulcan gave an amazing display!

These bi planes 

Well this is something that we have never done before.  We joined Robert at the Kempsford campsite which  is right next to the Airfield. We arrived on the Thursday afternoon and it was burning hot. Camp was soon established. We had booked adjoining pitches, so were able to establish a neat little encampment. Then we sat back to watch the planes arriving, and also the various planes and helicopters practising their displays. Kathy and the boys arrived on the Friday morning!

We spent Friday just sat by the tent watching all the arrivals and practising as well. There is a 'RIAT' radio station that broadcasts all day Friday, Saturday and Sunday, and is a really detailed commentary of what is going on, so we found that very useful.

Saturday was even hotter, so as we were not going into the show, we just sat by the caravan enjoying watching all the displays. The number of people in the show was absolutely staggering!

On the Sunday we went into the show.  As it was an airfield  I was able to easily push Lizzie around in the wheel chair. We got round and saw so many aircraft, as well as vehicles related to aircraft.
Here follows a selection of some of the planes and helicopters thhat we saw.

Our pitch

I have to say that we had an amazing weekend.  Lovely company, plenty to see and do. Good food and fine wines, and absolutely perfect weather.

Next year we will take a plane spotters guide with us to help identify all that we see