Motor Caravanner April 2024

Page 1

THE MAGAZINE FOR MEMBERS OF THE MOTOR CARAVANNERS CLUB APRIL 2024 Motor Caravanner for news • group rallies • membership renewals & much more visit www.themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk £1.95 where sold SCAN HERE CL Sites & NightStopsPlease make sure to pre-book sites before you go PLUS GROUP NEWS AGM NOTICE TEA BREAK TEASERS SHOWROOM SHORTLIST BUYING ADVICE FROM GENTLEMAN JACK OUT & ABOUT TRAVELLING WITH THE KIDS THIS SUMMER SCOTLAND DISCOVER

to Orkney and Shetland and Spot

Shetland

Discovering the Northern Isles has never been easier with NorthLink Ferries.

The comfortable and reliable service offers sailings from Aberdeen to Lerwick, Shetland, with regular calls into Orkney’s capital of Kirkwall. Alternatively travel to Orkney’s port of Stromness from Caithness. This 90 minute journey on MV Hamnavoe is the only sailing to Orkney which passes the iconic sea stack, the Old Man of Hoy.

Operated by

northlinkferries.co.uk

Orkney

Ihope you all managed to get out over Easter and that you enjoyed yourselves. I for one, am looking forward to parking on some firm ground. Let’s hope the wet and windy spell has moved on and that Spring has sprung.

The Inter-Group Festival is now in its final stages of organisation. See CoM News for an update on the parking. For those who have said that the cost to attend the Festival is prohibitive, I am sure you are aware that the cost involved have increased dramatically.

There are several Groups that have stopped holding extra-large rallies due to the cost of hiring basics like tables and chairs, along with the cost of the hall or marquee. And that’s before you have any entertainment; it all adds up to an extra nightly cost.

So, I hope you will appreciate that the Committee are doing their very best for you, the members.

Happy travels.

61 April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 3 CLUB NEWS 6 CoM News Volunteers needed to host Casual Campsites 8 CL Sites & Night Stops update 10 Obituaries 12 The Motor Caravanners’ Club Annual General Meeting SHOWROOM SHORTLIST 15 UK PVCs with four travel seats and a washroom (Part 2) OUT & ABOUT 24 Travelling with the kids this Summer 49 Scotland: In search of the South West Coast 300 61 Tried & Tested: The latest motorhome gear and goodies INDUSTRY NEWS 22 Project Yonder wins prestigious award Campsite bookings continue to rise REGULARS 40 Group News & Diaries 66 Tea Break Teasers 68 Bazaar 70 Classified Countrywide Publications Reydon Business Park, Reydon, Suffolk IP18 6DH Publisher/Editor: Mark Shreeve T: 01502 725839 E: mark.shreeve@micropress.co.uk Advertising: Mark Huggins T: 01502 725866 E: mark.huggins@micropress.co.uk Sinead Taylor T: 01502 725865 E: sinead.taylor@micropress.co.uk Cover photo: Highland Cow on an Insta Coo Tour at Kitchen Coos & Ewes. See feature on p49. Photo credit: Michael & Frances Howorth. INSIDE APRIL 2024 THE MAGAZINE FOR MEMBERS OF THE MOTOR CARAVANNERS CLUB APRIL 2024 Motor Caravanner for news • group rallies • membership renewals & much more visit www.themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk NightCLSites& Stops Please make sure to pre-book sites before you go PLUS GROUP NEWS AGM NOTICE TEA BREAK TEASERS SHOWROOM SHORTLIST BUYING ADVICE FROM GENTLEMAN JACK OUT & ABOUT TRAVELLING WITH THE KIDS THIS SUMMER SCOTLAND DISCOVER
Jacci Club Chair From
49 15
the Chair

Club Contacts

COUNCIL OF MANAGEMENT

Chairman:

Jacci Durkee (07931 527691)

Vice Chairman:

Sue Pilkiw (07562 324325)

Members:

Alistair Bartlam (07754 131893)

Carol Biggs (01473 620933)

Derek Clarke (07931 733656)

Graham Durkee (07931 527691)

Claire Edwards (07972 863905)

James Forrester

Kate Jones (07747 000587)

Les Kendrick (07860 286561)

Selma McMullan (07752 678454)

Keith Poole (07736 544490)

Anne Taylor (07414 852497)

Steve Wynn (07916 131892)

CoM WITH REPONSIBILITIES

CL & Night Stops: Carol Biggs (01473 620933)

Disability Advisor: Keith Poole (07736 544490)

keithp@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Exhibition Team:

Jacci & Graham Durkee (07931 527691) grahamd@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Head Show Marshal: Sue Pilkiw (07562 324325)

suep@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Homecraft Coordinator: Selma McMullan (07752 678454) homecraft@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Magazine/Handbook : Sue Pilkiw (07562 324325)

suep@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Health & Safety Officer: Keith Poole (07736 544490)

keithp@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

CLUB OFFICIALS

Casual Campsites: Kate Jones (07747 000587)

katejone@googlemail.com

Financial Officer: Paul Maguire (07973 827506)

Junior Leaders: Maria Hill & Gill Crosby juniors@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Festival Rally Site Manager & Head Show Marshal: Mick Pilkiw

Webmaster: Anna Billson webmaster@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Publisher/Editor:

E:

T: 01502 725839

Contributors:

Jan

Jo Smaje

Sharon

To email a member of the Council of Management please use first name & first letter of surname followed by @themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk ie jaccid@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

909442 kent@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Liz Dyer 07899 848074 essex@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Sandra Glendenning 07876 473055 anglia@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Diane Milton 07971 888492 eastwessex@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Peter Ingham 07815 789909 chiltern@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Bob Smart 07943 075876 eastmidlands@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Haley Scarborough 0747 999 1035 severnvalley@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Penny Feeney 07518 271742 nwmidsnwales@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Steven Wright 07966 224196 lancashire@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Awaiting EGM results yorkshire@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Tony Edwards 07976 235365 northerncounties@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Aileen Clark 07771 845199 scotland@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Alastair Bartlam 07754 131893 westwessex@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Christine Gautier 07976 306116 avon@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Sheila Revill 07796 188220 swpeninsula@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Pauline Greaves 01873 857542 swwales@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Peter Moore 07790 779024 nenevalley@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Heather Jennings 07875 191797 isleofwight@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Iris McEwan 07790 981492 northernireland@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

As N. Ireland Group

Wendy Jefferson 07714 616715 motorcycle@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Sec & Administrator: Ron Harris
Farm Estate, Marlbank Road, Welland, Malvern WR13 6NA T: 01684 311677
info@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk Office opening: Mon-Thu 9-5pm Fri 9-2pm MCC Office Administration: Penny Stoyles
www.themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk
MCC
Wood
E:
GROUP SECRETARIES CONTACT LIST 1 West Country 2 Sussex 4 Kent 6 Essex 7 Anglia 8 East Wessex 9 Chiltern 10 East Midlands 11 Severn Valley 12 NW Mids & NW 13 Lancashire 14 Yorkshire 15 N. Counties 16 Scotland 17 West Wessex 18 Avon 19 Channel Island 20 SWP 21 S&W Wales 22 Nene Valley 23 Isle of Wight 24 N. Ireland 40 The rest of Europe 42 Ireland 54 Motorcycle
Mark Shreeve
mark.shreeve@micropress.co.uk
Jack
Deville, Frances
Michael
Countrywide Publications, Suffolk IP18 6DH Secretary Telephone E-Mail
Bancroft, Kavanagh
&
Howorth
Wilcox 07833 625740 westcountry@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk
07528 845553
sussex@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk
07428
Jarvis
All opinions expressed in these pages are those of the Editor and his contributors and do not necessarily represent official Club policy. All Material copyright. The Motor Caravanners’ Club Ltd 2024. All Rights reserved. While every care is taken when accepting advertisements neither the Club nor the Publisher can accept responsibility for unsatisfactory transactions which arise. Printed by Micropress Printers Ltd. The opinions, advice and information contained in this publication are offered solely to inform members as to matters which will be of assistance to them. The Motor Caravanners’ Club and Countrywide Publications accepts no responsibility for any opinion, advice or information expressed by any person in any article contained herein and members should seek their own counsel on matters before acting or relying on any opinion, advice or information.

Bespoke Conversions

All campers include RIB seat & TUV elevating roof

New & used camper sales

Trimming service available 2 Years warranty

All vans fully certified

Full conversions start from £12,250 + VAT

8ballcamper www.8ballcamperconversions.co.uk
01482 848236

Club News

The Insignia online shop is now well underway and will be available on our website and at the Exhibition Stand at the shows by May 2024.

Following comments from members, we would like to confirm, that parking at our Inter-Group Festival will be in Groups. Please submit the names of your Group Marshals to Head Office.

The theme for Party Night at the Festival is School Days. Your Group may have a specific theme for the party table and dress – so if you are planning to attend and wish to join in, check for details with your Group Committee.

The information about our CLs and Night Stops is constantly being updated. The updates are included in the magazine (see page 8 for latest updates), but we strongly advise you to check with the sites before arriving. With the constant increase in the cost of electricity, please ensure you clarify the cost of an EHU with the site.

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED TO HOST CASUAL CAMPSITES

Members Casual Campsites are going to be different this year as Ann Bond has stepped down from running them. She has however booked two for this year, the first of which is at Tencreek Caravan Park, near Looe in Cornwall and the second at East End Campsite, Garton on the Wolds near Driffield. You will have seen them advertised both in the magazine and on the webpage but we need some volunteers to host the campsites. You will get free camping if you take on this role, the requirement is for two host units, both of whom would need to be in position on

between themselves to enable some time off as long as there is one host available on site at all times. As the name suggests, the campsite will be casual, bookings are being carried out via the site for Tencreek and pitches will be allocated by the site. Hosts can decide what, if any, activities they organise. Garton on the Wolds should be booked by contacting me.

If you would be willing to volunteer or want further information then please contact me, Kate Jones, on 01935 863815, 0774 7000587

NATIONAL RALLYnew name, newseelocation p37 6 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
Cornwall CASUAL CAMPSITE SPACES STILL AVAILABLE
Looe,
COM NEWS AS Air Suspension UK Ltd. 131 Chester Road, Warrington, Cheshire WA4 6ET info@as-airsuspension.co.uk www.as-airsuspension.co.uk T 01925 740666 • M 07874 046643 The HPC Hydraulic Levelling System is truly a step ahead for motorhome owners. Covering all requirements expected from a levelling system. it is simply and quickly operated using the on-board touch-screen controls or operated remotely from an iPhone 5 and above or an Android phone via a Bluetooth free app. Accompanied by the AS Air Suspension system, all your suspension and levelling needs are catered for. At AS Air Suspension UK Ltd, we seek to continually improve and stay ahead of our competitors. Using innovative materials to reduce the weight of the systems, without any compromise to quality. Ferry Good for Al-ko
Brownhills Motorhomes Ltd A1/A46 Junction, Newark NG24 2EA | Email: info@brownhills.co.uk | www.brownhills. co.uk For more information CALL 01636 704201 MOTORHOME COLLECTION SERVICE CASH TRANSFER AT THE POINT OF COLLECTION DUE TO HIGH LEVELS OF RECENT PRE-OWNED SALES WE WANT YOUR MOTOR HOME. TOP PRICES GIVEN ON ALL MOTORHOMES ALL MAKES AND MODELS CONSIDERED OUTSTANDING FINANCE SETTLED

CL SITES & NIGHT STOPS

NEW SITES

WALES | ANGLESEY

Tyn Y Gongl Farm (CL94496)

Benllech, Anglesey LL74 8SG

S & R Maden 01248 851017

Bookings 07823 771248 (8am-5pm) email: stevenmaden@aol.com

cost: £20 pupn open: All year

access: 3-6m

directions: From Britannia Bridge take A5025 after 8 miles you arrive in Benllech. At the village crossroads (Tescos) turn R onto B5108. Uphill past school / fire station, at staggered crossroads turn R & site is on the R.

1 mile away has general store, pub, chip shop, gift shop & Bistro.

AMENDMENTS

facilities: Water, rubbish bins, dogs allowed. Other facilities are being put in place, ask when booking to see latest position on these. places of interest: Anglesey Coastal Path, beach, restaurants, supermarket. Snowdonia National Park.

WALES | ANGLESEY

Afon Braint (CL94502)

Anglesey Model Village, Newborough, Llanfairpwllgwyngyll, Anglesey LL61 6RS

What3Words:

chariots.attracts.homelands

Nick Bowler / Larry Chambers 07890 218516 / 01248 298259

Bookings between 10am-8pm email: afonbraintclsite@gmail.com www.afonbraint.co.uk

cost: £12 pupn MCC members, £15 non-members open: All year access: 13ft 6 inches

directions: Located on the main A4080 between Dwyran & Newborough. 8 mile approx. from A55 Britannia bridge. Follow brown signs to Model Village.

facilities: Water, rubbish, hard standing, chemical disposal, toilets, dogs allowed, disabled friendly places of interest: Licensed café & model village next door. Garage/ petrol station nearby. 200m from Anglesey Coastal Path, 2 miles to Llanddwyn island, beach & Newborough Forest. Village approx.

CORNWALL

Fernleigh Barn (CL94323)

Please note price has changed to £15pupn inc. EHU. Site is not suitable for longer stays.

DEVON

South Stroxworthy (CL94417)

Please note this site is no longer a Certified Location.

DEVON

Lazy Buzzard (CL94231)

Please note price has changed to £15pupn. Additional phone number: 07888 264739.

SOMERSET

Weston-Super-Mare AFC (CL94402)

No longer temporarily closed.

YORKSHIRE

Ivy Cottage (CL94463)

Please note price has changed to £15pupn.

YORKSHIRE

Heptonstall Bowling & Social Club (NS54448)

Acre Lane, Hebden Bridge HX7 7LT

What3words lasted.singing.decking Bookings: 07517 394389 (between 10am-4pm) email: heptonstallclub@live.co.uk cost: £5 pupn. The car park is open to public & club use during day. Do not park without permission. We

only have an exemption for 5 vans, unauthorised vans will be asked to leave. Self contained vans only. open: All year

directions: West on A646 through Hebden Bridge to set of traffic lights by The Fox and Goose. Continue on to turning circle and retrace back to traffic lights. Take L turn S/P Heptonstall proceed uphill keep L at top towards village. Just before entering village take

L turn S/P “Car Park for Visitors" and keep to end. East on A646 turn L at traffic lights as above.

facilities: Level hardstanding, dogs allowed, toilets available only when the club is open. Disabled toilet accessible when club open. Chemical disposal and water available, there is an additional £5 charge for access to the water tap and grid lifting irons. places of interest: Two pubs, tearooms, PO and gen. store in village. Historic church and Methodist chapel, museum. On bus route 596 to Hebden Bridge, walking, cycling and countryside.

SCOTLAND | FIFE

The Clink (CL94204)

07802 441953

cost: Nightly rate is £12.50. EHU is priced by the meter, members are advised to check EHU price when booking.

WALES | CEREDIGION

Penrhiwgaled Arms (NS54251)

New owner: Mrs T. Phelps

E: penrhiwgaledarms@outlook.com

CLUB NEWS 8 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
Benllech in Anglesey, home to the new CL Site Tyn Y Gongl Farm
www.pearmanbriggs.co.uk www.cotswoldedge.co.uk Pearman Briggs Caravan Sales 224 Cheltenham Road, Longlevens, Gloucester, Glos GL2 0JW 01452 524700 or 01452 524192 Pearman Briggs Motorhome Sales Field View Bungalow, A38 Gloucester, Leigh, Glos GL19 4AA 01531 822666 Cotswold Edge Leisure Vehicles Ltd Evesham Rd (A46), Beckford, Nr Tewkesbury, Glos GL20 7AS 01386 882866 Pearman Briggs Leisure Ltd Est. 1946 Dealers for... CARAVANS MOTORHOMES Plus our own Exclusive Elddis Magnum brand (caravans & motorhomes) Drawing on over 40 years of experience Tried & Trusted Based on over 5000 reviews Rated Excellent As a family run business we have been around for a while and know a few things about insuring motorhomes, our cover is second to none and our customers rate us as excellent. Our insurance policies can be tailored to meet your needs whatever type of motorhome you own. 3 98.97% claims paid out *As of the 17th October 2023 Aviva stated that 98.97% of all claims were paid out 3 Motorhome specialist 3 Unlimited windscreen cover 3 Green card/European cover 3 Optional breakdown cover call us today on 020 8984 0777 Victor Millwell Insurance Agency Ltd trading as Comfort Insurance is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Insurance Policy terms and conditions apply. Get a quote comfort-insurance.co.uk Underwritten by April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 9 MOTORHOMES WANTED We Buy All Makes, Models & Years Top Prices Paid We Also Buy Damp or Damaged 0800 975 2931 www.camperbuyer.com We also buy caravans www.caravanbuyer.org Instant Payment No Hidden Charges

DATE FOR YOUR DIARY

Join us in Alicante

Booking for this year's FICC Rally in Alicante, Spain, 26 June - 3 July are now being taken. The cost for two persons in a van is £280 including electric. There are various trips you can book at reception when you arrive, prices from €65 to €90 per person. If anyone is interested, please contact Les Kendrick (01942 215375) for a booking form.

suddenly being admitted to hospital, our dear friend Ron died on 24th February.

Pre Intergroup Festival Rally

East Midlands Group will be running a Pre Intergroup Festival Rally at Newark Rugby Club from Sunday 19th May to Thursday 23rd May. We have arranged to have access to the showers and toilets in the club. There is a regular bus service into Newark town from outside the gates. There will be a professional live entertainment on one evening and the rugby club will be providing a bar.

This is a bookable (max 55) and the cost is £15 per unit per night, or 4 nights for £50. Full payment is required with booking. Booking forms can be obtained from the East Midlands Secretary either by asking in person at a rally, by phone (07943 075876) or requesting by email at eastmidlands@ themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Since joining the MCC Ron rarely missed a rally with East Midlands Group. Along with his wife, Anne, he dedicated his time to support both our Group and the Club. For many years he worked as a member of the Show Marshals’ Team and was always there, quietly supporting Anne in her work for the group and CoM. His practical skills were put to great use, whether keeping equipment in working order or turning his hand to the coffee mornings!

Always a true gentleman and good company, with numerous stories to tell, Ron made many friends in the Club and he will be greatly missed by all of us. We send all our deepest sympathy and love to Anne and all the Taylor family. Ron’s funeral will take place Washingborough Crematorium, Lincoln, on the 11th April at 11am. Yorkshire Group were recently informed of the sad loss of the following members:

Malcolm Finkill

The East Midlands rally at Normanton-on-Soar on the 17-19 May is incorrectly listed as an East Wessex rally in the 2024 Handbook (page 24). Apologies for any confusion.

Malcolm sadly passed away in January. His wife, June, passed away in September last year. They were long-time Group members and were very popular at rallies, they will be sorely missed.

Jim Hopkins

Committee member Jim Hopkins sadly passed on 24 February. He was husband to our Rally Officer,

Derek Worth

Long time member Derek Worth, husband to Jean, has sadly passed away. They have been Club members since 2007.

Ray Bolton (Yorkshire Secretary)

Alan Gibbons

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of longstanding member of East Wessex, Alan Gibbons. Both Alan and Pat loved entertaining us with their music, and also served time on the committee. A number of years ago they retired to Devon but still kept in touch. Our thoughts are with Pat and family at this sad time.

Jayne Hibbert

Jayne, a long time member of West Country, sadly passed away on the 24 February. She will be remembered by many for her love and devotion to her two dogs. Our thoughts go out to Chas, her long term partner.

Howell & Marion Williams

It is with great sadness that S&W Wales announce the death of a much-loved couple and longserving members of our Club. For 20 years Marion had lived with Parkinson’s and Howell had cared for her; rallying in ‘Daisy’ was their escape. Howell died suddenly and a week later Marion joined him; they are together forever. We all send our love and sympathy to their two daughters and their families.

Roy Horn

It is with sadness that Nene Valley announce the passing of member Roy Horn on 13 March. Until illness Roy and Freda had been active and helpful members for many years. Our thoughts and sympathies are with Freda at this sad time.

10 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 CLUB NEWS
Handbook correction

THE MOTOR CARAVANNERS’ CLUB LTD ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of The Motor Caravanners' Club Ltd will be held at 2pm on Saturday 25th May 2024, Camper UK Leisure Park, Church Road, Swinethorpe, Newark, NG23 7EE. This is the SIXTY-FIRST AGM since incorporation, although being held during the SIXTYSECOND National Rally.

RESOLUTIONS

Any member who wishes to place a Resolution on the Agenda of the AGM should submit the Resolution, in writing, to the Club’s Registered Office no later than six (6) working weeks prior to the date of the meeting, i.e. on or before 12th April 2024.

Any Resolution should be signed

requirements are those as laid down by The Companies Act 2006, sections 292 and 293.

MEMBERS’ MEETING

Following the AGM there will be a Members’ Meeting where members can discuss with Council of Management, any matters of policy or concern, etc. It must be remembered that Council are not required to act on the results of any voting that takes place at the Members’ Meeting.

Items for the Agenda of the Members’ Meeting should be submitted to the Company Secretary at the Club’s Registered Office, not earlier than twenty eight (28) working days and not later than

COUNCIL OF MANAGEMENT

Nominations for membership of the Council of Management (with the written consent of the nominee) should be submitted in writing to the Company Secretary at the Club’s Registered Office no later than six (6) working weeks prior to the date of the AGM. Each nomination should be signed by the proposer and seconder, who must be Full Members of the Club.

The formal notice of the AGM along with the Agenda, Resolutions, List of Nominations for Council of Management and a proxy voting form, will be published in the May Edition of the ‘Motor Caravanner magazine’.

12 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 ARE YOU LOOKING FOR THE BEST CASH OFFERS? www.thewobblebox.co.uk UPLOAD YOUR DETAILS JUST ONCE THE UK’S LEADING DEALERS BID YOU GET THE BEST POSSIBLE PRICE EASY, SAFE, FREE Upload the details of your motorhome, camper or caravan and receive the best offers from the UK's leading dealers.
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DON’T JUST INSURE YOUR MOTORHOME....SHIELD IT! Where Else Can You Get?* • Cover for motorhomes up to 25 years old. • European cover up to 270 days. • Cover for self-build motorhomes. • New for old cover up to 12 months from new.** • No claims bonus protection available. • Personal belongings cover up to £5,000. • UK and European breakdown cover available. • Unlimited windscreen cover available. shieldtotalinsurance.co.uk/mcc or call us on 0800 975 0814 Get A Quote Online Shield Total Insurance Services is a trading style of A-Plan Holdings authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority Registered Office; 2 Des Roches Square, Witney OX28 4LE • Registered in England • Registration Number 750484). This can be checked on the FCA’s register by checking the FCA website at www.fca.org.uk/register. *Subject to acceptable underwriting criteria **Subject to being the first registered owner and max of 10k miles per annum

ONE TWO BECOME

Last month we ‘aired’ the current trend among some members of selling their big coachbuilt and ‘run-around’ car and purchasing a smaller high-top motorcaravan to fulfil both roles. We looked at the WildAx Pulsar [A], Devon Sahara 4-berth [B], Vantage Rio [C], and finally…the only one behind the blue oval, Bailey’s Endeavour B64 [D]

This month’s selection features one from each of our longest standing volume PVC converters. Auto-Sleeper, Swift, Elddis and Auto-Trail. Re-reading the original introduction (March 2024 Motor Caravanner pages 17 & 18) may aid the challenging process of choosing which is right for you and yours. Happy hunting!

We recommend you take a close look at the following inspected and evaluated motorcaravans and suggest you add them to your shortlist! Note that OTR prices are for guidance only and subject to change. >>

Gentleman Jack. UK PVCs with four travel seats and a washroom (part 2).

SHOWROOM SHORTLIST
D A B

SHOWROOM SHORTLIST

AUTO-SLEEPER FAIRFORD PLUS

Auto-Sleepers have been converting panel vans since the very early 1960’s. Fairford Plus is available on either the Peugeot Boxer or Fiat Ducato window van. Both utilise automotive-style glazing for a sleeker, better-integrated look. Of course, this means that the windows in the main salon are made from glass, but they are athermic (multi-layered). Fairford Plus easily achieved Grade Three classification for winter use in moderate climates. The sleeping-berths at the far rear can only be arranged into a transverse double. Crucially, the bed frames hinge upwards revealing a huge potential cargo hold, making it possible to securely transport a jetski or similar. Moving forward from the bedroom there is a centrallyplaced offside washroom, nearside kitchen, and finally behind the driver…

a Pullman dinette. Strangely, the rearward-facing seat doesn’t have its own backrest, though the driver’s one will provide support. High quality cabinetwork (lime-washed woodgrain finish) compliments the buttoned

upholstery. Underfloor heating appliances are by Whale and a 25-litre underslung LPG tank is standard, as are the Thule load-bearing roof rails. Auto-Sleepers direct-to-the-customer spares service is highly-regarded.

16 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024

Go for it

Bear in mind

• Long and distinguished pedigree

• Choice of exterior colour

• Side and rear wind-out canopy awnings

• Smart TV and Wi-Fi router

SWIFT CARRERA 194

It may come as a surprise to younger members to learn that the Swift Group first built the Carrera back in the 1990’s – subsequently quietly dropping it, whilst they concentrated on their coachbuilt range. Times and priorities

No automatic transmission option on Boxer based examples.

Spec check

Length: 6.363m (20’ 10.5”)

Travel Seats: 4 Sleeps: 3 Power Train: Peugeot Boxer

OTRpricefrom: £78,650

2.2-litre TD or Fiat Ducato 2.2-litre TD 140bhp, front wheel drive Max payload: 389kg.

In a nutshell

An appealing blend of traditional and contemporary.

change and Swift recommenced building PVC’s after acquiring Autocruise. Production transferred to Cottingham, followed by several instances of rebadging. A couple of years ago the Carrera name re-emerged. 194 benefits from the very-latest radiused contemporary furniture and soft furnishing colourways. The lounge-diner includes both (swivelling) cab pews and a half-dinette. These are ahead of a nearside galley and wardrobe, plus an offside shower room. This Carrera’s USP is the flexibility of the rear bedroom. The bed frames hinge upwards in a similar manner to the Fairford Plus, but crucially the somnolent have the choice of opting for two single beds or a regally sized over-all double-bed. And there’s more…heavy-duty anchor points at the rear for serious load-lugging. Fresh and wastewater dump valves are electrically-

operated and remotely controlled. Finally, a VINCHIP™ identification systems boost security and traceability.

Go for it

• Country-wide dealer network

• Fully winterised water tanks

• Modern interior

• Flexible rear bedroom/storage

Bear in mind

Limited payload with three adult passengers. Est 130kg (dry)

Spec check

Length: 6.363m (20’ 10.5”) Travel

Seats: 4 Sleeps: 3 Power Train: Fiat Ducato 2.2-litre TD 140bhp, front wheel drive Max payload: 355kg

In a nutshell

Captivating Carrera makes a welcome return

>>
April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 17
OTRpricefrom: £75,495

ELDDIS CV40

Elddis is another of our big hitters which used to undertake panel van conversions back in the day, then abandoned them before successfully re-entering the market a few years ago. What a re-entry that was, it was the first Elddis on Ducato for yonks, thus automatic transmission was an option. In addition, Elddis provided class-leading VFM (value for money), with a surprisingly high standard specification including many items ignored by much of the competition including dovetailed drawers, a proper (steel) spare wheel and tyre in an underfloor carrier, and Isofix child seat fixings for rear passengers. Layout is

features a forward half dinette/ swivelling cab seats and a rear lounge consisting of a brace of inward-facing twin seat settees that convert into a transverse doublebed at night. The centrally-placed galley has a slot-in domestic style

grill/oven, plus a surprisingly large compressor 12V/230V fridge. The CV 40 is the only sub six-metre offering this month; thus it would be a good choice for use as an ‘only’ vehicle.

Go for it

• Sound VFM

• Generous payload

• ISOFIX enabled

• Many ‘dealer specials’ available

Bear in mind

Plain side and rear door cards look a tad parsimonious

Spec check

Length: 5.998m (19’ 8”) Travel

Seats: 4 Sleeps: 3 Power Train: Fiat Ducato 2.2-litre TD 140bhp, front wheel drive Max payload: 595kg

In a nutshell

CV stands for ‘clever vehicle’ as well as for ‘campervan’ OTRpricefrom:

18 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 SHOWROOM SHORTLIST
£63,689
>>

Highfield, Rushenden, Alsager Avenue, Queenborough, Kent ME11 5LA

A CAMPSITE WITH A DIFFERENCE...

LeoBay is quite unique as it is a campsite with fitting facilities, so if there’s that little something you need doing from replacing a bulb to a complete conversion we do it all. Our experience goes back 40 years. Our core experience is in auto electrics and vehicle security as well as vehicle diagnostics, we use factory diagnostic software to solve your problems. Trained in both vehicle and mains voltages we can also inspect and test your mains hook up too! Gas that’s no problem either! Now there’s a service that makes life simple, so next time you need help, come and stay at LeoBay, a nice cuppa on arrival, we will sort your problems while you relax on our 1st class site. There’s even a courtesy vehicle to use during your stay at LeoBay!

LeoBay is a site in a million, completely built by us and independent, so all are welcome whether you’re a club member

or not. We have drawn on our 25 years as motorhomers, collating all the best bits from the many sites we have visited over the years. The pitches are all wide hardstanding, with a 10amp hook up and your own grass area to spread out on, the site sits up on a hill over looking the sea with amazing views. On site facilities include a unique summer kitchen, where everyone can chat, relax and eat under cover, there’s a barbeque and pizza oven for you to use, or sit and relax by the open fire with a bottle or two. We like to make sure you’re warm and comfortable so the shower block is heated, with two large rooms, and to top it off the gardens are just splendid. Pets are welcome; the dog walks along the shore are great, there’s plenty of wildlife to watch. So as you can see it’s well worth a visit at just £25 per night all in.

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 19 023 8001 0029 Badminston Lane, Fawley, Southampton SO45 1BX Motorhome servicing & MOTs Servicing & Repairs Tyres & Wheels Air Conditioning Diagnostics Courtesy Cars Collection & Delivery • Cover for American motorhomes available • Insurance for Trikes, Buggies & Quads • Discount available to club members • Limited mileage discounts • Stand-alone breakdown cover Tel: 01733 208117 sales.wisl@gmail.com www.whittleseyinsurance.com Authorised and Regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority FOR A COMPETITIVE QUOTE TELEPHONE 01733 208117 * MOTOR CARAVAN INSURANCE COVER
For more info
visit the
or to book call us on 07899 927467
website www.leobay.co.uk or email steve.leobay@gmail.com
SPECIALISTBATTERYLITHIUM LEOBAY WISHES ALL CLUB MEMBERS A WONDERFUL 2024

AUTO-TRAIL ADVENTURE 65

In addition to converting four ranges of panel vans bearing their own badge, Auto-Trail’s state-of-the-art North Lincolnshire factory makes shedloads for other ‘European’ brands within the parent Trigano organisation. Thus (a) they are dab-hands at designand-build and (b) full advantage is taken of the inevitable crosspollination of ideas between marques. A-T enthusiasts and serial purchasers will be aware that - its layout of forward half-dinette and rear lounge with everything else in-between - is common with some in the Adventure and V-Line ‘S’/’SE’ and ‘Sport’ ranges, so why feature the Adventure’s interpretation?

OTR price from:£78,734

Simples…Adventure 65 adds a rear hinged elevating-roof to the high-top crown, which when raised enables an upper-deck containing an additional longitudinal doublebed. The panoramic views available out through the windows in the canvas will ensure that children

will love it up there in a world of their own…as will adult star-gazers and incurable romantics! Standard equipment includes a threeway absorption fridge, flyscreen ‘door’ covering the side aperture, a 25-litre underslung LPG tank, underfloor space and water heater, contemporary ‘aircraft-style highlevel lockers and those eye-candy alloy wheels.

Go for it

• Desirable family-friendly ‘upstairs’ bedroom

• 4 generously-sized adult berths

• Choice of exterior colours

• Optional (extra-cost)

Panoview glazed overcab

Bear in mind

Fitting an elevating-roof has added around 140mm (5.5”) to the height of a standard high-top. This should not affect performance, but it might not fit under some domestic carports

Spec check

Length: 6.363m (20’ 10.5”)

Travel Seats: 4 Sleeps: 4

Power Train: Fiat Ducato 2.2-litre TD 140bhp, front wheel drive Max payload: 365kg

In a nutshell

Adventure 65…perfect for… um…err…adventures!

SHOWROOM SHORTLIST
20 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
HEATING TANKS OPTIONS For more information, CONTACT US TODAY! www.propexleisure.co.uk F Speak to Rick 07708 770028 | www.windblockers.net Lillypad Leisure is now back open for business! GOOD NEWS April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 21

FIRST TIME LUCKY AS PROJECT YONDER WINS PRESTIGIOUS AWARD

Project Yonder, a campervan manufacturer from East Sussex, is celebrating after winning the ‘Van Conversion with a Fixed Roof over 6m’ category the first time it entered its new, luxury, go-anywhere, off-grid Freedom 4X adventure camper in the Motorhome and Campervan Design Awards.

These prestigious awards are given by The Caravan and Motorhome and were judged during the Caravan, Camping and Motorhome Show at the NEC in Birmingham.The judges praised the Freedom 4X campervan as: “an incredibly stylish and unique-looking van, like nothing else I’ve seen,” and “for off-grid adventures, this space age van meets the needs of an adventurous couple”. One judge concluded, simply: “I love this van. This is the future, and I love it.” www.projectyonder.co.uk

BRITS LEAD THE WAY AS TREND TO BOOK CAMPSITES IN ADVANCE CONTINUES TO RISE

Since 2019, there’s been a change in travel culture in Europe with a significant increase in the proportion of campervan and motorhome owners now preferring to book campsites in advance (rather than arriving without a reservation), according to surveys by Campercontact, the app and website directory of over 41,000 places in 58 countries for motorhomes to stay.

In 2019, demand for bookable sites was significantly lower compared to now. Only the British were accustomed to pre-booking in 2019 (72%) which has remained the highest and most consistent with 74% today, the biggest jump has been seen in Germany (36% to 74%), while in France this has increased from 32% to 50%, Italy 43% to 67% and Holland 41% to 61%.

The number one irritation for motorhome owners surveyed in all countries was arriving at a campsite and finding it is full.

www.campercontact.com/en/

22 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
INDUSTRY NEWS

AUTO-SLEEPERS

Last month Auto-Sleepers refigured their website to provide a much more informative and intuitive resource. It’s easy to use, contains brochure and price-list downloads, as well as a canny model comparison feature. Auto-Sleepers are our oldest

volume motorcaravan converter with many serial purchasers among club members. They currently build on Peugeot Boxer/Fiat Ducato, Mercedes-Benz Sprinter, and Ford Transit Custom.

www.auto-sleepers.com

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 23 Full security range available at: www.bulldogsecure.com 01952 728171 Secure Your Motorhome With Bulldog Steering
Wheel Locks Wheel Clamps Euro Clamp
UPGRADE WEBSITE
KEEPING IN TOUCH WITH THE CLUB Club website Join the Club Facebook Club page Facebook Members & Friends Instagram

Summer brings the opportunity for family adventures, and when you add a motorhome into the mix, the possibilities are truly endless. With enough space for everyone’s luggage, all the comforts of home, and of course, the freedom to roam wherever the road takes you, taking kids on a motorhome holiday is sure to be memorable.

Kids of all ages will love the experience of travelling in a motorhome, however the grownups planning the trip may find it requires more preparation than an adults-only break. Here we offer up some practical tips to ensure a smooth journey:

1. Pack wisely

It can be easy to overpack for holidays with kids, especially when anticipating all possible weathers and activities. Opt for versatile clothing and essential items to minimise clutter, and don't forget the all-important snacks and entertainment options (books, games, portable devices) to keep kids occupied during long drives and downtime.

2. Consider duration

Younger children can easily get tired when travelling and experiencing new environments. Holidays can feel long for all the wrong reasons when everyone is

with kids the Travelling this Summer

fed up and just wants to go home –consider the ages and personalities of your children and plan your trip length accordingly.

3. Plan plenty of rest stops

Break up time on the road and avoid the dreaded ‘are we there yet?’ with frequent opportunities to stretch your legs and let the kids burn off energy. Research familyfriendly attractions and services with play areas along the route to make the journey more pleasant for everyone.

4. Safety first

It’s important to ensure that seat belts are always worn while the

motorhome is in motion, and to install appropriate car/booster seats for younger passengers before you set off. It’s a good idea to familiarise children with what to do in case of an emergency, and when staying at campsites, establish designated meeting points in case of separation.

5. Practice good etiquette

Motorhome trips are the perfect opportunity to teach children about environmental stewardship and respect for others. Model how to follow campsite rules, maintain cleanliness, and be considerate of fellow travellers, and they will become seasoned campers in no time!

6. Embrace spontaneity

While it's essential to have a rough itinerary to avoid indecision or boredom, don't be afraid to deviate from the plan and take an unexpected detour – some of the best memories are made when

24 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024

kids

Break up time on the road and avoid the dreaded ‘are we there yet?’ with frequent opportunities to stretch your legs and let the kids burn off energy.

you explore in a way that only motorhome travel allows.

Best places to take the kids

You’ve packed up your ‘van, got enough snacks and downloaded episodes of Bluey to see you through any length of traffic jam – but where to go? Here are some suggestions of places to head with the family in tow:

Kent

Known as the Garden of England, Kent offers fairy tale castles, a world-renowned garden, spectacular coastline, ancient

woodlands and rolling downs. Start around Ashdown Forest and travel towards Tunbridge Wells, then over the Weald towards Hythe, and then Rye and Battle to find stunning scenery, excellent campsites and lots for kids to do – Pooh Bridge, steam trains, Hever Castle, canoeing in Bewl Water and plenty more.

Family-friendly attraction nearby: Diggerland – a unique theme park where children and adults alike can ride, drive and operate real diggers, dumpers and other full- size construction machinery.

Along Offa’s Dyke

This trail takes you through no less than eight different counties. From the English borders over Wenlock Edge and around the Long Mynd into the picturesque Wales countryside running alongside Offa’s Dyke. There are wonderful places to stay, castles for kids to explore, grand country houses to visit, steam trains to ride and the

chance to glide over the impressive Pontcysyllte Aqueduct in a barge. Family-friendly attraction nearby: Cute Farm Experience, Monmouthshire – Offering private, tailor-made experiences for animal lovers of all ages. Whether walking alpacas, cuddling miniature donkeys or having a cwtch with the world’s cutest sheep, this will be a day out with a difference (prebooking essential).

The Broads and the North Norfolk Coast Combining gorgeous countryside and coast, family fun is guaranteed in Norfolk. Make your way from the fine city of Norwich along the coast, taking in Mundesley, Cromer, Cleynext-the-Sea, Wells-next-the-Sea and Burnham Market before ending up in Hunstanton. This summer drive offers up canoeing, birdwatching, picnicking and crabbing opportunities galore.

Family-friendly attraction nearby: BeWILDerwood – Run wild in this

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 25
Diggerland
>>

award-winning outdoor adventure park in the Broads National Park. Enjoy magical treehouses, zipwires, slippery slopes, storytelling, boat rides, marsh walks and meet the Crocklebogs, Twiggles and Boggles.

The Jurassic Coast

Begin your Dorset adventure in Dorchester with the dinosaur museum, then continue the dinosaur/fossil theme, travelling through Abbotsbury, Weymouth, Lulworth, Kimmeridge and Corfe Castle, ending up on Swanage’s sandy beaches. En route you can spend days hunting for fossils, renting sailboats and kayaks, visiting ancient castles and building sandcastles. Be aware this route gets more crowded in August. Family-friendly attraction nearby: The Tank Museum – A great option come rain or shine, this is the world’s largest collection of tanks! Mixing education with fun, the kids can learn all about tanks, their crews, and their history – from 1916 to the present day.

The Lake District

enchanting stories in a magical recreation of the beautiful Lake District countryside. The exhibition features favourite characters from the famous books, an awardwinning outdoor Peter Rabbit Garden, and a superb familyfriendly café.

Wild West Scotland

Start in Carlisle then take the scenic route towards Cockermouth, Keswick, Ambleside, Fell Foot Park and Coniston, marvelling at the picturesque landscape and going walking, biking, sailing, canoeing,

outdoors in all its glory. Cruise across Coniston on a steam yacht, experience a ride on the Ravenglass and Eskdale Railway and take the kids up to see Castlerigg Stone Circle as an introduction to ancient Britain.

Family-friendly attraction nearby: The World of Beatrix Potter –

This extraordinary route takes you up the west coast of Scotland, where you will find some of the most stunning scenery in Europe and all the space kids need to run and play. Start in Inveraray and end in Plokton; on the way, take in Oban, Glencoe, Smirisary, Mallaig, Armadale and the Kyle of Lochalsh. The chances of wild camping are very good on this route, on which you can explore towering mountains, waterfalls and lakes.

Family-friendly attraction nearby: Jacobite Steam Train – All aboard! Fans of Harry Potter can imagine that they are off to Hogwarts as they ride this famous steam train, which passes over the famous Glenfinnan Viaduct, a location also featured in the Harry Potter films.

Wherever you go, a motorhome holiday with kids is truly special –waking up to the sound of birdsong, roasting marshmallows under the stars, exploring new corners of the country and embarking on the adventure together as a family will no doubt create memories that will last a lifetime.

26 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
The Tank Museum Jacobite Steam Train
OUT & ABOUT | TRAVELLING WITH THE KIDS
The World of Beatrix Potter

Nestled in the Eden Valley surrounded by rolling countryside, Pennine View Park is perfectly placed for walking, cycling and simply relaxing.

We are a family-run caravan and camp site on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, a mile from the historic market town of Kirkby Stephen.

t:

We have a small playground, FREE WiFi, a relaxed and friendly on-site bar, a small essentials shop, covered washing-up area, launderette and newly refurbished luxury washrooms and disabled

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 27 Please visit www.hru.co.uk or call our friendly team on
HOLIDAY RESORT UNITY BREAN SANDS, SOMERSET TA8 2RB HRU044
01278 751 235
www.pennineviewpark.co.uk
017683 71717 e: hello@pennineviewpark.co.uk w:
Station Road, Kirkby Stephen, Cumbria, CA17 4SZ
Holiday Park at Ullswater 017684 86309 www.parkfootullswater.co.uk holidays@parkfootullswater.co.uk Howtown Road, Pooley Bridge, Penrith, Cumbria CA10 2NA Family-run | Set in magnificent scenery | 10-minute lakeside walk to Pooley Bridge village | Electric hookups | On-site shop, restaurant & takeaway | Beach | Laundrette | Modern toilets & showers | Children’s play area | Disabled access | Mountain bike hire | Water points | Basketball/Football court | Fishing | Golf & swimming pool nearby | Dogs welcome CAMPING & TOURING PARK IN THE GARDEN OF ENGLAND 01622 870838 www.hopfarm.co.uk FROM JUST £23 PER PITCH/ NIGHT Our superb touring and campsite is delightfully set in over 500 acres of beautiful open fields and woodland. We have 300 pitches that include hardstandings, electric hook-ups and water points. Facilities include toilets, showers and washrooms with electric points and a pub/restaurant on your doorstep. Dogs are welcome in the touring park (kept on a lead). DOG FRIENDLY
facilities.
28 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 Enjoy the peace and quiet of the Devon countryside as well as the stunning Jurassic Coast at Lyme Regis just 20 minutes drive away. Free heated swimming pool. Dogs welcome. Award-winning park open until 4th November. Book now 01404 831 225 01829 760544 • booking@elmcottage.co.uk Little Budworth, Cheshire, CW7 2QJ www.elmcottage.co.uk • Rallies welcome • Award-winning amenities block • Disabled facilities • Wi-Fi • Shop • Elec hook-up • Hardstanding & grass • Nearby attractions • Close to pubs and walks • Motorhome service point • Children’s park • Self-catered chalet • Barn to hire • Wood-fired pizzas on Fridays (inhighseason) MID-WEEK OFFER Stay 2 nights, get the 3rd FREE! (low & mid season only) Telephone: 01297 560259 Email: enq@newlandsholidays.co.uk www.newlandsholidays.co.uk If you’re looking for countryside views in a quaint Dorset village on the Jurassic coast path, with great facilities this park is for you 01736 762231 • 07973 184429 www.caravanparkcornwall.com Boscrege, Ashton, Cornwall TR13 9TG 45 beautiful luxury hire and private static caravans & lodges, open all year. Seasonal touring with seasonal pitches, storage, dog & child friendly. Set in 12 acres of Cornish countryside, just 2 miles from Praa Sands Beach. Wi-Fi, laundry room, dog walk, small childs play area also on park and available. We also buy and sell new & used static caravans throughout the UK. onlineBook “The most picturesque caravan park in Cornwall” Camp amidst beautiful countryside close to the sea beaconcottagefarmholidays.co.uk | 01872 552347 Beacon Drive, St Agnes, Cornwall TR5 0NU Ideally situated in front of Chesil Beach and less than two miles from Weymouth town centre. www.pebblebank.co.uk Tel: 01243 513116 www.wicksfarm.co.uk Wicks Farm Holiday Park Redlands Lane,WestWittering,Chichester,West Sussex,PO20 8QE We are a privately owned holiday park set in beautiful rural surroundings. Situated near the South Downs, only 1.5 miles away from the sandy beaches at West Wittering and the water sports facilities of Chichester Harbour.

with kids

Frights and FANTASY

If you are thinking of going further afield Frances and Michael Howorth explain how and where to take children to continental Europe in a motorcaravan.

Taking children camping is a fun activity. Doing so with children who have never tried it before, can be challenging and making a first camping trip to Europe can be even more daunting. Fear not! We have been there, and done that. What is more, we all got along famously and lived to tell the tale.

Most children like an adventure. In fact, many of them thrive on journeys that are out of the ordinary and chances are they will jump at the opportunity to travel to Europe in the campervan. Now, to put things into context, the children in our story are our grandchildren, Edward aged 12 and Elizabeth aged 10, but our advice holds true for all parents and grandparents, so keep on reading.

Firstly, make sure the children have passports. It is all too easy to assume that just because the adults in the party have these documents, that the kids will have them as well. The next important piece

of documentation is permission to travel. This is of particular importance if a child is travelling with just one parent or with one or more grandparents. Border control officers constantly keep a watchful eye on children travelling with adults whose surnames are different. If just one parent is traveling abroad with a child, make sure you carry written authority from the other parent, granting permission for

surprised when these documents get scrutinised at borders and be prepared for the child to be quizzed by passport control officers.

Dividing Europe up, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Austria, and Germany are further away while Belgium, Netherlands and France are easier to get to and probably as such the countries most visited by motorcaravans

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 29
>>
the Travelling this Summer Visit to the ruined feudal
of La Roche en Ardennes
chateau

smaller nation than many of the others, but no less wonderful. What is not to like when kids talk about chocolate and waffles? Families can visit the Atomium in Brussels. This massive building was built the 1950s to represent a magnified iron molecule. It has become an iconic part of the skyline and a symbol of Brussels.

But we love Belgium, and particularly the Wallonia region, because of their love of Halloween as a holiday. In the two-week period leading up to the festival, the population almost to a man, join in the spirit of things. Houses shops

Caves at Han are a fun place to take the kids at any time of year, but at Halloween the operators make so much more of an effort to keep the children on track. The Safari ride they offer above ground, is equally entertaining and make sure you visit at least one haunted house party while you are in Wallonia. Check half term dates this coming October and take the kids over for some spooky fun. Adults will, no doubt, find a glass of two of the local brew is to their liking and that just makes the trip seem even better!

and other buildings are decorated, and spooky fun is the theme. Far less American, with an almost complete absence of candy kisses, tricks and treats, Wallonia embraces Halloween in the good old ghoulish sense of the word, but it is never too scary to frighten the kids. The

The Netherlands is host to a wide variety of family-friendly activities, perfect for a family motorcaravan vacation. In Amsterdam, natural history museums and science museums offer kid-friendly exhibits. Our grandchildren loved the chance to visit the house where Anne Frank hid from the Nazis. It brought their history lessons to life. Outdoor guided tours of the gorgeous Dutch countryside and several windmills make for an easy way to explore outside busy cities.

Perhaps the easiest country to take the kids to is France. The place is home to extensive food and fashion history and dozens of UNESCO sites. Many of these are lesser-known attractions to international visitors, meaning they are better protected from tourists.

Disneyland Paris offers a unique alternative to many other parks. And yes, you can take your campervan into some of the official car parks and stay in your van overnight. Visiting Disneyland in a >>

30 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 OUT & ABOUT | TRAVELLING WITH THE KIDS
The Atomium in Brussels agsaz / shutterstock NeonBear / shutterstock The Caves at Han Suspended bridge at Disneyland Paris Norizaludin Abd Karim / shutterstock
Park Up & Play In Buckinghamshire Gulliver’s Campsite MK15 0DT NextDoortoGulliver’s LandThemePark

motorcaravan with kids has to be one of the most exciting moments for little ones, and we know of plenty of people who enjoy the experience so much they repeat the trip time after time. When you leave metropolitan France and enter the countryside, you enter a world of verdant, rich environments. These include hills and forests, as well as rivers for kayaking. Rural France is a great place to embrace the outdoors while on your vacation. A favourite place for us to take the children to is the the castle at Guedelon, a 45 minute drive from Auxerre. Here a team of enthusiasts is building a thirteenth century chateau in Burgundy, France from scratch using medieval tools and techniques. Truly immersive, fascinating in the extreme, and a delightfully easy way of educating children without them realising that is what is happening. You can spend

a whole day here watching and learning.

Children studying the World Wars will be fascinated by the coastal region of northern France. The beaches of Normandy and the tank museums and the cemeteries honouring the war dead are all very

www.littlebodieve.co.uk

Tel: 01208 815547

Bodieve Road, Wadebridge, Cornwall PL27 6EG

Static Caravans • Motorhomes Tents • Tourers

A family site within a short walking distance of Wadebridge town.

Come and explore beautiful Poldark country, only 10 mins drive from the fishing village Port Isaac, of Doc Martin fame, Rock and Padstow with many restaurants, including the famous Rick Stein.

We are only a few minutes cycle ride down into town where you can join the Camel trail either along the estuary to Padstow or inland towards Bodmin moor – both are very scenic.

moving places. Drive further along the coast roads of northern France and enjoy beaches good food and even more history lessons. The hour or so spent in Bayeux studying the tapestry describing the Norman invasion of the English coast in 1066 is time well spent.

32 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 OUT & ABOUT | TRAVELLING WITH THE KIDS
Aerial view of the Castle of Guedelon Francois Boizot / shutterstock
April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 33 Hurley Riverside Park Hurley, Berkshire SL6 5NE • 01628 824493 info@hurleyriversidepark.co.uk www.hurleyriversidepark.co.uk 01872 510716 www.carvynick.co.uk Summercourt, Newquay, Cornwall, TR8 5AF
Holiday Park, nestled in the heart of the Cornish countryside, offers the perfect base for exploring Newquay’s worldfamous beaches and beyond. Our well presented hardstanding
are ideal for motorhomes, caravans and
and come fully serviced
water, electric
waste
can also
our on-site
as on-site
Pets
families very
HOLIDAY PARK
Carvynick
pitches
campervans
with
and
outlets. Guests
enjoy use of
shower facilities as well
pub.
and
welcome.

Camping without the kids

As summer and (hopefully) warmer weather approaches, so do the school holidays. These times of year are inevitably some of the busiest for campsites, with families flocking to enjoy some fun in the sun. If the thought of spending your own holiday amongst a cacophony of excitable children doesn't appeal, why not consider an adult-only campsite this year?

Peace & quiet

Adult-only campsites are havens of tranquillity, often set in rural, secluded areas where there are guaranteed to be no disturbances from rambunctious children or tantruming toddlers, so you can soak up all the serenity of the great outdoors. And the best bit of all –lie-ins are guaranteed!

Grown-up entertainment

Forget being stuck at soft play, arcades, playgrounds and familyfriendly activities – at adult-only campsites you can indulge in more grown-up pastimes such as fishing,

wine tasting, boating, spa days or simply a long stroll through the countryside. Us adults can have fun too, just in far more luxurious ways!

Date-night paradise

For couples seeking a more romantic getaway or a chance to reconnect, away from the demands of family life, adult-only campsites are a great choice. Enjoy candlelit meals, drinks at the pub and latenight campfire chats while able to give each other your full attention.

Friends old and new

Adult-only campsites also offer wonderful opportunities to make new friends, whether simply enjoying a cuppa and a chat outside your 'vans or attending an organised social gathering such as a themed night or exercise class, they're a great place to connect with like-minded individuals.

Freedom and flexibility

Many adult-only campsites are open all year round and are often dog-friendly, offering the freedom to visit whenever you like (and not have to organise a dog-sitter!). Without the task of having to keep little ones entertained, you will have the opportunity to take each day as it comes and do whatever you fancy, whether visiting a nearby National Trust property, a pub or indulging in some shopping.

So, if you're yearning for a carefree getaway that will fully recharge your batteries, allow you to soak up the surroundings and create lasting memories, get yourself booked in at an adult-only campsite.

34 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
ADULT-ONLY CAMPSITES

Willowcroft Caravan Park

Willowcroft is a small, family run two acre site set in peaceful, unspoilt surroundings. Only a two minute walk from the river, where you can fish, sail, row, or simply walk along the river bank into Potter Heigham village. The site offers showers, toilets, electric hook-ups, welcomes dogs and is a haven for bird watchers, cyclists and walkers. Close to great sandy beaches and the hustle and bustle of Great Yarmouth and Norwich.

Staithe Road, Repps-With-Bastwick NR29 5JU

willowcroftsite@btinternet.com

Tel: 01692 670380

www.willowcroft.net

Mob: 07889 182483

Eastbourne Road, Westham, Pevensey, East Sussex, BN24 5NG

Tel: 01323 763165

www.fairfieldsfarm.com

Adult Only Caravan & Camping Park in East Sussex

An attractive, quiet touring park close to Eastbourne. Offering superb clean facilities, lakeside walk, dog exercise field, onsite shop and free WIFI.

Please contact us for more information, a brochure and details of our

Snead, Powys, Wales SY15 6EB

01588 620471

www.daisy-bank.co.uk

SOUTH WALES TOURING PARK

Llangennech, Llanelli, SA14 8AX

Tel 01554 820420

www.touringpark.wales

enquiries@daisy-bank.co.uk

OPEN ALL YEAR

South Wales Touring Park /Llwynifan Farm is an adults only, 25 pitch touring park. We are one mile from junction 48 of the M4, centrally located to visit any attraction in South and West Wales. All our pitches are hardstanding with a view. There are spacious heated shower rooms, toilets, dishwashing and laundry facilities.

Family-run, picturesque rural retreat • Self-catering log cabins • Purpose-built fishing lakes • Licensed tea room on-site serving homemade meals and treats

• Convenience shop open 7 days a week • Direct access to the Brampton Valley Way Cycle Track • Market Harborough just 25 min walk away.

01858 434098

waterloofarmleisure.co.uk

info@waterloofarmleisure.co.uk

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 35
36 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 On-site delivery for any travel mishaps Honest advice trusted by professionals 17321-1 MVS Motorhome Mirror Postcard.indd 1 06/12/2018 12:17 MVS Ltd, 6 Ilton Business Park, Ilton, Ilminster, Somerset TA19 9DU Tel: 01460 247200 E: info@magnummvs.co.uk www.magnummvs.co.uk PRODUCTS YOU CAN TRUST www.milenco.com The Milenco BC Lock encases and locks the motorhome brake and clutch pedals, rendering them inoperative. Versions available to fit the majority of motorhomes. Fits in seconds. One of the only Sold Secure and Police Recommened pedal locks available on the market. See website for details. Double award winning Motorhome and Campervan Insurance Winner 2023 Best motorhome insurance provider Caravan Guard Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. or visit www.caravanguard.co.uk/mc Please mention ‘Motor Caravanner’ when calling Call 01422 396 742 Get a quote today Open 7 days
INTERGROUP THE MOTOR CARAVANNERS CLUB Including the Club AGM 23-28 MAY 2024 Camper UK Leisure Park, Church Rd, Swinethorpe, Newark, Lincs NG23 7EE NEW NAME...NEW LOOK! All pitches must be pre-booked. Booking form in Members’ Area on website and monthly magazine. FESTIVAL 2024 FRIDAY DAY TRIPS Lincolnshire Aviation Heritage Centre and Woodhall Spa & Skegness ENTERTAINMENT FRIDAY NIGHT KELLYS HEROES SATURDAY NIGHT PARTY NIGHT WITH ‘THE ULTIMATE ALTERNATIVES’ SUNDAY AFTERNOON LINCOLN UKULELE BAND SUNDAY NIGHT GET IN 2 MONDAY NIGHT DARREN BUSBY

MCC INTERGROUP FESTIVAL AND AGM 2024

Camper UK Leisure Park, Church Road, Swinethorpe, Newark, Lincs NG23 7EE 23-28 May 2024

BOOKING FORM

ALL PITCHES MUST BE PRE BOOKED, NO PAYMENT AT GATE

From Thursday 23 May: £150.

From Friday 24 May: £120

Coach trips all on Friday Lincolnshire Aviation Museum and Woodhall Spa £25pp

Skegness £15pp

The above rally fees are for two adults, extra adults incur a cost of £2.50 per person per night.

Lead adult

2nd Adult

3rd Adult

Address Postcode

No Adults No Children

Names & age of children

Membership No

Group

Tel No.

Tick if this is your first Festival or Rally n

Van registration

Caravan & Car n

Disabled Parking Area n Badge Ref No (only needed if parking in disabled area)

EHU for medical need only is available in Disabled Parking Area only at £60. Tick if req n No EHU available on rally field. Long EHU cables may be required. EHU remittance due: £

Date arriving

Date leaving

Lincs Aviation Museum and Woodhall Spa (no. of seats) Skegness (no. of seats)

Rally fee due £ Coach fee due £

Total payment due (rally fee + coach trips + EHU): £

Payment:

1. Online booking form on the MCC website – www.themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk –pay by card at the time of booking.

2. By Post: send your completed form to: The Motor Caravanners’ Club Ltd, Wood Farm Estate, Marlbank Road, Welland, Malvern, WR13 6NA giving your telephone number. The Office will contact you for payment by bank credit or debit card. CONTACT NUMBER

Closing date: Thursday 9th May 2024

(booking forms or cancellation refunds will not be accepted after the closing date)

Signature Date

THE MOTOR CARAVANNERS’ CLUB INVITES YOU TO JOIN YOUR FRIENDS TO CELEBRATE OUR
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GROUP NEWS & DIARIES

APRIL 2024

ANGLIA

Group news coordinator: Jade Soanes

T: 01502 725840 E: groupnews@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

Post: Motor Caravanner magazine, Countrywide Publications, Reydon Business Park, Reydon, Suffolk IP18 6DH

Deadline: 5th of the month for inclusion in the following month's magazine

A total of 43 motorhomes turned up for our Valentine's rally at Fakenham: 32 Anglia, three East Midlands, six Essex and two Nene Valley. The rain held off while we got everyone parked up then it was in the hall for tea, coffee, chairman’s welcome and bingo. There were no repeat winners this time so more people got to win.

Saturday was a free day to have a lay in, walk into town, visit the chocolate shop to buy those misshaped Easter Eggs or just catch up with friends. Although from what I saw a lot of members made a visit to Wetherspoons for either breakfast or lunch. Saturday night was back in the hall for some live music and dancing. Dale Diamond is a great singer and kept everyone up dancing all night.

Sunday morning was back in the hall for tea, coffee, Benjy’s bonus balls draw and the raffle. With only two people this time sittng on the chair for three wins. Sandra

Stalham Rally, 22-25 Feb. The English weather was a letdown, as it tuned 1pm on this new venue and it being the first Ɵtime we were parking up there the weather turned and rained hard on us. Doreen was checking vans in, the two Keith’s parking vans and poor Annette was at the top of the lane so vans did not miss the turning. With three Essex, one Severn Valley and nineteen Anglia vans we all parked well into the carpark with room for more.

Thursday night we had the hall from 9pm for the rest of the weekend. Some helped get the hall ready and we chatted, with the girls having a dance to Paul’s music.

Friday was dry so lots ventured into Stalham town with lots finding the best pub in Stalham for food and drink. Friday night it was as all Friday nights, we paid our fees, sold raffle tickets and played three games of cash bingo. Afterwards Paul the Music Master did a great music quiz for us with lots of fun and laughter all night.

Saturday was as Friday with more members flooding into the Swan for lunch and liquid refreshment. Saturday night Teresa had put a picture quiz up on the walls for members to tax the grey ceils before we had the ladder game out and roller ball with lots of competition from Terry and Martin over the high score for the ladder game.

Sunday morning Keith did the Chairman's Waffle and Benjy did the Bonus Ball, before both Caz and Keith drew the raffle tickets. A good time was had by all with this venue being well liked and members wanting to return. Thanks to the stewards Teresa, Keith, and special thanks go to Doreen and Steve with this being their first time stewarding at a rally. Thank you to also to all the members that attended for making this rally a great success. Keith

Upcoming rallies: 19-21 April at Ludham Village Hall NR29 5PB. This is a new venue and is bookable. Please contact Teresa to book.

AVON

Avon is doing our utmost to keep as many rallies as possible non-bookable. Unless specifically marked, we will have plenty of room so just come along. At the moment this will only affect the Holiday Rally in September, and the Christmas Celebrations in December. Payment at rallies will be by cash. Full information about all our rallies can be found at www. avongroup.org.uk

Our first outing this year was very well supported by locals and visitors. Biting cold winds ensured some walks along the beach at Northam Farm, Brean were bracing! During the rain and hail we puzzled over the quiz, met friends, read, crafted, or went on bus trips etc. For the coffee morning we had glorious sunshine and out came the knees and T-shirts and even the odd bbq or two were dusted off.

Thurs 25 to 29 April, we cross the bridge to South Wales and Caldicot Castle & Country Park, Church Rd, Caldicot,

40 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024

NP26 4HU. Quiet grass site, visit the castle and tea rooms, it’s an easy walk to town/pub. Large grounds for taking a stroll. The hosts are planning a Medieval Theme, so feel free to come dressed to impress and rescue a damsel or go slay those dragons. £8 pupn + £1 rally fee, per rally.

Not one but two Steam Fairs are next on the agenda. 2 to 7 May is Abbey Hill Steam Rally, Yeovil Showground, Entrance One, off the A37, BA22 9TA. £50 for the weekend covers 2 adults and up to 3 children with free entrance to the steam fair all weekend. There is more information on Facebook at AbbeyHillSteam.

17 to 19 May we return to the popular Castle Combe Steam Rally, Castlecombe Race Circuit, Near Chippenham, SN14 7EY. This is again a flat fee for the weekend of £40, irrespective of the number of nights you stay, or the number of passengers. There’s lots to do, all the details at www. castlecombesteamrally.co.uk.

If any Avon members are attending the MCC Intergroup Festival, 23-28 May in Swinethorpe, please tell the Avon Chairman or Secretary.

Do you fancy a scone, jam and fresh clotted cream along with strawberries (£2.50pp)? Then head to our Strawberry Rally at Petruth Paddocks, Cheddar, BS27 3XW, 13-18 June. £15 pupn, limited ehu at £3pn. Showers and toilets. Easy walk into Cheddar for the shops, cafes and caves.

The Bristol Balloon Fiesta will have night glows on the Friday and Saturday nights this year. Our rally opens on the Wednesday (7 August). There are buses across the road for Bristol or beyond to occupy you until the Fiesta starts on the Friday. Plenty of room, just come along.

Later in the year we have a Holiday Rally at Orchards Holiday Park, Newbridge, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight 9-23 September. Bookings direct with the site on 01983 531331. The notoriously expensive ferry crossing is much more reasonable when booked along with the campsite.

We still have a few rallies without hosts, or co-hosts. If you can support the committee by filling these vacancies, it will be greatly appreciated. Thank you, ACG

Upcoming rallies: 25-29 April at Caldicot Castle & Country Park, Caldicot Castle Church Rd , Caldicot, NP26 4HU. 2-7 May at Abbey Hill Steam Festival, Yeovil Showground, Entrance One, off the A37, BA22 9TA. 9-23 September is our Holiday Rally at Orchards Holiday Park, Newbridge, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight. Bookings direct with the site on 01983 531331.

CHILTERN

No rallies to report this month, most of the group are recharging their batteries or buying new ones and getting the vans ready for a packed rally program, starting with a ten-day trip to the east Kent coast.

Upcoming rallies: 3-7 May at Holy Trinity Church, Cookham, SL6 9SN, bookable. 17-19 May at Aylesbury RFC Weston Turville, HP22 5RN.

EAST MIDLANDS

Casino Rally at Marshall’s Yard. What a brilliant weekend was had by all due to the hard work of the stewards Sue, Mick, John and Glynis. Twenty-five vans attended this annual rally. On Friday evening the chairman welcomed the members. Bingo was played and then John did a general knowledge and dingbat quiz; both were won by Bob and team.

Saturday was a free day to visit Gainsborough or just sit outside to enjoy the sunshine. In the afternoon games and cakes were available in the hall. In the evening members dressed to impress and were issued with funny money to gamble at the tables. The most successful gambler was Tom, who received a bottle of bubbly for his efforts. Then came the annual snail race. Would Steve the two-year champion win for a third time? Six ladies competed for the ladies champion which was won by Linda Hague, then came the men’s contest. Poor Steve lost and the new men’s champion was Dave Chapman. Then came the final to find the overall champion. Due to Dave being disqualified by our strict umpire John, Linda was our winner, well done. Then there was a family challenge where Evie beat her mum and grandma in a snail race. Well done Evie.

On Sunday the raffle was drawn and lucky number was won by Margaret. The chairman thanked the members and the stewards for making it a enjoyable weekend and wished them a safe journey home. Yvonne

Upcoming rallies: 7 March is the Country and Western at Ingoldmells. 28 March at Springfields.

EAST WESSEX

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of long-standing member of East Wessex, Alan Gibbons. Both Alan and Pat loved entertaining us with their music, and also served time on the committee. A number of years ago they >>

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 41
GROUP NEWS
East Midlands group

retired to Devon but still kept in touch. Our thoughts are with Pat and family at this sad time.

In February we had our Valentine's meet at Ringwood Junior School where we were joined by visitors from Chiltern and Sussex. On the Friday, Pete entertained us with his music. We also had a The Price is Right 1971 multiple-choice quiz which stretched the grey-matter a bit too far – many answers were guesses. But Bob and Sue triumphed, not sure whether it was luck or skill. One nameless member paid £200 for a made-to-measure suit, when said item was available from Burtons for £28!

Saturday morning was a quick walk into town to sample the many shops. We met up in the afternoon to catch up and play some games of card bingo. Local singing duo Emma & Paul entertained us in the evening. They built up a good rapport with the audience and had us up on our feet with their varied choice of music. Paul promised to learn Cliff's Devil Woman for next time after encouragement from the crowd, so we'll be seeing them again in the future.

After (stand-in) Chairman's chit-chat on Sunday morning we all said our goodbyes and made our departure. April is a month to rest, so see you all at one of our rallies in May.

Upcoming rallies: 3-7 May at Beehive Field, Trowbridge Road, Bradford-on-Avon, BA15 1UA. Bank Holiday. Large field next to canal. Bus stop outside. Town 1 mile away. 1pm start. 29 May-2 June at Royal Victoria Country Park, Netley Abbey, Southampton, SO31 5GA. Coastal location, Bus and trains half a mile. 1pm start.

ESSEX

Great sociable, happy weekend at Mayflower School Billericay. The weekend was Valentine's themed so the hall was kindly decorated by Anne,Tony and Denise. Anne and Tony also got all the lovely raffle prizes and some delicious chocolate hearts.

Friday we had a nice chill out evening with friends, along with a great car badge quiz by Tony F. Anne F collected back in the day photos of couples, mostly wedding photos which were put on a notice board for people to guess who's who. Of course we all still look as young as we did years ago so it was easy to guess the couples. Great game and lovely to look back on with all the photos. Late evening most had a dance to Nick's great playlist then 11pm out of the hall and off to bed.

On Saturday most braved the rain and set off to Billericay and Basildon to have a wander and something to eat. Another lovely evening with couples arriving all dressed up. We played a couple of games of bingo and drew the raffle. John and Terry did a great Valentine's quiz and Tony and Jacqui did a lovely picture quiz of celebrities. Such a great effort made by so many people which is lovely, thank you.

Sunday we had tea, coffee and the Chairman's Chat. S Rogers

Upcoming rallies: 8-10 March at Chelmer Valley High School, 6pm.

ISLE OF WIGHT

Our new rally season is about to start and we are all looking forward to being out and about again. Unfortunately there is a lack of facilities to rally on the Isle of Wight that allows us to rally during the winter months. Therefore, we have very little news to report.

Our first rally of the season will be at the Orchards at Newbridge near Yarmouth on 12-14 April. This a full facilities site with swimming pool. Fingers crossed for some better weather.

Happy rallying to all groups. As you know you are very welcome to join us at any of our rallies and we will make you most welcome.

Upcoming rallies: 3-5 May at The Fighting Cocks, Arreton. 17-19 May at Water Mill Heights, Calbourne.

KENT

In last month’s edition of the magazine, I posed the following statement “Didn’t we have a lovely time the weekend we went to Sandwich….” and I can say we definitely did as 16 vans from Kent, two from Essex and one from Anglia found themselves at the intriguing town of Sandwich. This was our first weekend rally of the 2024 season and a great time was had by all and so we have every confidence that the season will just continue to get better and better.

Those attending the rally found themselves, on the Friday night, in the school hall playing a game of Broomsticks and Bean Bags which Tony labelled as a game designed with the older person in mind and hopefully would not be able to be played quite as vigorously as last year! Well, all I can say is that even though the rules had been reassessed to make it safer and we were using soft bean bags the competitiveness of our members was not lacking and other strategies were deployed and some great fun was had by all as we fought, yes fought! to get the bean bag into the goal. Digger’s team came up trumps and the player of the match was our own Jean Outen who defended her goal with a fierce doggedness that can only be seen in one so young at heart!

On Saturday night the gangs of Al Caplonker and Bugsy Moron occupied the school hall in all their Gangster and Moll attire with Steven and Sharon Jarvis winning the prize for the best dressed Gangster and Moll. An intricate strategic game was acted out led by Al (Tony Viall) and Bugsy (Digger Graves) for ownership of the hall. Al Caplonker won the day and Bugsy’s team were sent on their way. The evening ended with us all enjoying a dance along to Mandy’s music.

Our thanks are extended to Tony and Marilynne for hosting such a wonderful weekend.

Our upcoming rallies are as follows: 4-7 April at Palm Bay Primary School, Palm Bay Avenue, Cliftonville, Margate, CT16 3PP. Hosts required. The school is adjacent to the beach and a short walk along the flat promenade to Margate. This is a bookable rally. 25-28 April at Bridge Farm, Appledore, Ashford, Kent TN26 2DA. Hosts David and

42 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
GROUP NEWS

Antoinette Missions. Appledore is a quaint Kent village with a shop and a pub with the Royal Military Canal running close by affording excellent walks and fishing. This is a bookable rally. 2-6 May at Sandwich Lakes Ash Road, Nr Canterbury, CT3 2DA. Hosts required. Day ticket fishery is available with a waterside cafe serving hot and cold food. On-site showers and toilets available to campers. There is a flat walk to Sandwich or why not catch a bus into nearby Canterbury? This is a bookable rally. Please contact Sharon on kent@ themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk to book the above rallies. 23-28 May is MCC Intergroup Festival and AGM. If you are attending, please contact Sharon via the details above so that we can let you know what our theme will be for the party night and whether you would be keen to have a gathering over the course of the weekend.

LANCASHIRE

Lancashire hosted two fantastic February rallies: 9-11 February was our Whittingham & Goosnargh games rally, our hosts Roy, Sue, Maggie and Brendan braved the weather and did a fantastic job hosting their first rally, huge thanks to them and also Mel for parking up. Friday evening Brian called bingo, followed by line dancing music from Dean.

Saturday morning started with Tai-Chi lead by Janet and Stephen, followed by Val's Valentine's themed crafts.

At 1.30pm the games started: curling, darts, dominoes and pool. Well done to the winners who recieved cash prizes and trophies .

Then 7.30pm in the club house for music, line dancing, a quiz from Brian, Take Your Pick with Brian and Janet, followed by dancing and our talented members entertaining us on stage with their singing. Dean did a good job as always with the music, we finished off with Bill singing Best of Friends.

Sunday's coffee morning included chat by Lisa our Chair person, then prize giving to the winners of the raffle and bonus ball . 28 vans, all Lancashire, attended. Huge thank you to our hosts, Janet and Pauline and committee members and all who helped make it a great rally.

16-18 February at Canberra, our Valentine's rally. We had 27 vans (all Lancashire). Hosts Rob, Angie, Bobby and Vivienne did a fantastic job entertaining us all, big thank you to hosts and to Mel who helped parking vans up.

7.30pm saw us in the club with friends listening to music provided by Dean and Jack, followed by Allan's bingo, line dancing, and free and easy chat with friends.

Saturday 11am Val and her crafty crew made Valentine's gifts. Val's Easter chicks were on sale (proceeds for group charity) well done Val! 1pm was practice for ukulele's. Brian organised curling. 7.30pm saw the tables decorated with balloons, bottle lamps and glitter by our fabulous hosts. Take Your Pick with Allan and Brian started our evening, with Eric producing a quiz for Bobby to read out. Three couples were chosen for the hilarious "Mr and Mrs" game. Congratulations to prize winners Eric and Barbara.

Sunday 11am coffee morning, winners of bonus ball and raffles were gratefully recieved, big thank you to our hosts, Lisa our Chair person, committee members and all who helped to make it a memorable rally, scribe Beattie

We welcome you to join us in our forthcoming rallies: Colne 12-14 April, Aspull 26-28 April

MOTORCYCLE

Our first MCG rallies begin at the end of April, in Wales. We have four rallies back to back, taking you to the seaside, hills and caves, a castle and riverside. Looks likes we will be doing plenty of exploring on our motorbikes too. See you soon!

Upcoming rallies: 23-28 April at High Tide, Sandy Bay Campsite, Rhych Avenue, Porthcawl CF36 5DB. 28 April-3 May at Dan Yr Ogof Caves, The National Showcaves/Centre for Wales, Brecon Road, Abercrave, Swansea SA19 1GJ. 3-8 May at Caldicot Castle, Church Road, Caldicot NP26 4HU. 8-13 May at Hereford Rowing Club, 37 Greyfriars Avenue, Hereford HR4 0BE. Full details can be found on our website motorcyclegroupmcc.co.uk under Rally and Ride Information, then click Programme.

NENE VALLEY

Twelve vans made it to Wrenn School, Wellingborough, where our first meet of 2024 was held. What a relief to have tarmac under our wheels and fine, frosty, sunny weather, as most of the Nene Valley was still saturated or flooded from the endless rain. We had visitors from East Midlands, South & West Wales, Anglia and the Motorcycle Group (Chiltern), with three vans on their first visit to us – welcome all.

The weekend was a bit of a low key affair, as it had been so long since our last meet it was felt that our guests would like a bit of a Noggin and Natter, but Jane quickly organised a round of bingo on Friday.

Saturday most found the local Wetherspoons and the museum in town, then in the evening a silly hour with the kazoos and 'music' ? quiz – always good for a laugh! The raffle and bonus ball were drawn, and there then followed Pat's quiz (come back Tony – all is forgiven). We were treated over the weekend to delicious home-made chocolate cake from our good friends from the MCG. Thank you to all who made this an enjoyable weekend, donated raffle prizes, helped put the classroom back together and

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 43 >> GROUP NEWS
Lancashire group

helped in so many ways. Wheeltapper

Our rally on 5-7 April is at Barnwell, an historic village just 3 miles from the interesting town of Oundle. The village boasts a Manor which was the former home of the Duke and Dutchess of Gloucester, along with two 13th century churches, a castle and that all important public house, the Montagu Arms. Other local attractions are the Barn Garden centre and Café (1 mile) and Barnwell Country Park (2 miles). Our hosts Mary Ellen and Anita would like to have a Table Top Sale in the hall on Saturday, so if you have any bits and bobs you wish to sell, please bring them along.

26-28 April we have an additional rally at Home Farm, Cople Road, Cardington MK44 3SN. The farm is across the green from the pub, and we have the use of the Village Hall for the evening. There is also an extensive garden centre close by.

Upcoming rallies: 5-7 April at Barnwell Village Hall, Church Hill, Barnwell, Peterborough, PE8 5QD. Cost £14 pupn. Start time 1pm (bookable). 26-28 April at Home Farm (Crofts & Findlay Farmers Ltd), Cople Road, Cardington, Bedford, MK44 3SN. Start time 1pm. Cost £14 pupn (bookable). 17-19 May at Holt Farm Campsite, Holt Road, Southam, CV47 1AJ. Cost £16 pupn (bookable). Booking details are given on the Nene Valley website www. nenevalleymcc.co.uk.

NORTHERN COUNTIES

Hello everyone – short and sweet this month. We have a couple of rallies to report on. This first being East Durham Agricultural College, Houghall, Durham 9 to 11 February. We had 15 vans attending, all Northern Counties. This site is fairly close to Durham City Centre, either a 20 minute walk for those more able, or a short bus ride. It was nice weather on the Saturday so quite a few members made the trip into Durham and the majority ended up in Wetherspoons – what a surprise. Many thanks for Jim and Sandra Hall for hosting.

Next we were at Blucher Social Club 1 to 3 March, with buses right outside the site to Newcastle or Hexham. Again hosted by Jim and Sandra, many thanks to you both. Once more we had 15 vans, all Northern Counties. We hope to see you at a rally soon. Don’t forget to check our website for rally information and important updates: www. mccnortherncounties.co.uk. Paula Edwards

Upcoming rallies: 5-7 April at Amble Foreshore, a lovely harbour location. 12-14 April at Darlington RFC *new location* (room with pay bar). 3-8 May at Braithwaite Memorial Hall (following on to Spittal Farm).

N. IRELAND

Magherafelt 9-11 February. Considering the weather forecast for the weekend it didn’t prevent 34 motorhomes from turning up at Magherafelt. We seem to hit it lucky when it comes to most of our rallies; this weekend was no exception. The sun shone and the temperature rose to give us a lovely weekend. We were warmly greeted by Andy, Sam,

Jenny and Selma who gave us our welcome pack with a Valentine's chocolate treat whilst the two men parked us up. Friday evening kicked off with Tin Top bingo, which involved a lot of laughing and not a lot of experience! Music followed supplied by Roy with dancing if the need arose.

On Saturday morning the ladies were treated to a craft session with 20 in attendance and beautiful Valentine's cards made to give to their loved ones. The gents met to discuss activities they would enjoy taking part in – 14 attended and ideas were flowing. I would love to have been a fly on the wall.

On Saturday afternoon we were left to our own devices and many spent the time in town watching the Six Nations Rugby in local establishments, shopping or having a bite to eat before our Saturday night entertainment with music provided by the excellent Joe Mac. Tables were dressed beautifully as you can see in our photo gallery. The raffle took place later conducted by one of our hosts, Sam. He gave us all many a hearty laugh especially when it came to his tickets being checked by someone on his table and believe it or not he did win a prize. Good for Hailey managing to carry that heavy bag of spuds she and Brian won. Sure it was Brian’s birthday after all. What a present. We finished off the evening by all getting on the floor to sing our Best of Friends anthem.

Sunday morning we met for our usual coffee, tea and buns provided by our hosts. Our Chairman, David, thanked them for all their hard work in producing another successful rally. David then congratulated Christine McCullough, Jane Aston and Brian Warnock on their birthdays. He welcomed yet another new member, Billy McClintock, to our club. He informed us that the raffle raised £195 and Albert Everett and Betty Stewart won the two number plate draws. After all the serious business our gentlemen were asked to come to the front where they were given a lovely red rose by Selma. Another great weekend. Thank you. Thelma Kyle-Ewing

Forty-five vans arrived at Beechlawn School in Royal Hillsborough to be warmly greeted by our weekend hosts John and Joyce McCune, who were assisted by Victor and Eleanor McFadden. We had a strong turnout for bingo on Friday night. Victor our amusing ‘caller’ for the evening certainly made Casey’s night, when the lucky lady won two out of the six games. Following bingo, DJ Roy played music that had us all up on the dance floor.

Saturday morning brought much welcomed sunshine to the craft class and Men’s Meet; some watched rugby and others enjoyed exploring Royal Hillsborough. Robbie Pearson’s music had us all up dancing again on Saturday night.

After the Sunday coffee morning, David, our Chairman, welcomed everyone and thanked our weekend hosts for a well organised weekend. Congratulations were given to Frank and Frances on their new van. George Gorman was welcomed to his first rally and birthday wishes were given to Tammy Brady. The Chairman informed the members that the committee had agreed to reintroduce the reward point system for attendance. This will be back-dated to January 1st, 2024. The number plate draw was won by

44 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 GROUP NEWS

Norman McKee and Rubina Watson. John McCune thanked members for the donations of items towards the Raffle Prize Draw and he extended his thanks to co-hosts, Victor and Eleanor. The Chairman announced that £15 had been raised through book sales and this was for the Chairman’s Charity. Everyone was wished a safe journey home. Thanks to John, Joyce, Victor and Eleanor for a memorable weekend.

Bailey and Betty

NWM&NW

There was a Valentine and Pancake Rally at Offley Hay Village Hall on what began as a wet weekend, though the sun broke through on Saturday and Sunday. 15 vans came with visitors from Severn Valley, East Midlands and South and West Wales. Jon and Elaine were hosting supported by a team of volunteers: Jacqui, Philip, Sue, David and Christa. Friday was a meet and greet evening and some went to the Star pub nearby to see Miss Dinamite.

On Saturday there were craft activities in the hall thanks to Christa introducing many to "diamond art". I think that's what it's called. The room was very quiet with concentration as tiny, coloured pieces were placed on designs. Tea/coffee and biscuits were served to maintain the participants. In the evening we had a choice of soups, leek and potato or carrot and coriander with flaky pastry and bread roll followed by pancakes. Christa had one of her now famous quizzes to tease and challenge us. We had to identify famous couples from television or films. James and Elaine won this. As light relief a pancake toss was held. Many queued for this. Martin was eventually crowned the "pancake leader"! Candy showed a good knowledge of St Valentine when she won the quiz and everyone received a tube of love hearts.

Jon stood in for Linda with notices for forthcoming rallies during coffee morning and to thank everyone for another enjoyable rally.

It was another wet start for the rally at Aldridge Community Centre. Nineteen units came including visitors from Lancashire, East Midlands, Severn Valley and Northern Counties. Parking was restricted a little by the number of activities at the Community Centre. The icy start to Saturday didn't stop our members venturing out and about to explore the varied attractions in the local area. There were plenty of shops, pubs, cafes, restaurants and a transport museum. Buses were available to Brownhills, Walsall and even Birmingham City Centre.

It was meet and greet time on Friday with a few games of bingo for a change. On Saturday, following a busy day, a relaxing evening with a light supper including cake, Prosecco and music. Many thanks to Linda, Mike and Christa who supported Eileen and myself with this. Thank you to all for making it an enjoyable weekend.

Details for booking rallies or if you think you can host or help with rallies contact the rally officers, Jon and Elaine: email nwmnwrally@hotmail.com or mobile 07525 851394

Upcoming rallies: 28 March-2 April at West Midlands Showground, Shrewsbury, SY1 2PF. Easter rally. Walk into

Shrewsbury with lots to see. Car boot sale on Sunday. 2-7 May at Newport Rugby Club, a new venue. Old Showground, Forton Road, Newport TF10 8BU. Hardstanding, bar drinks, entertainment. Short walk to town.

SCOTTISH

Hello fellow campers, once again there is very little to report as I am writing this at the beginning of March. By the time you read this the our first rally will only be a few days away. I have spent the last weekend readying the 'van and checking all my gear ready for the new season. The Committee and hosts look forward to welcoming you at least some of the rallies planned for this year. If you haven't already you should try rallying at least once. There you can meet fellow members not just of the Scottish Group but members of other groups do join us. Coffee mornings and evening events, quizzes, games nights etc, are usually organised with daytimes being free to do your own thing.

Upcoming rallies: 19-22 April at Foresterseat Caravan Park, Burnside, Arbroath Road, Forfar DD8 2RT. 2pm start. 22-25 April at Logierait Railway Farm, Near Pitlochry PH9 0LH. 2pm start. 3-5 May at Knockdhu Distillery Field AB54 7LJ ( bookable as restricted to 20 vans) 2pm start. 5-9 May at Whitehills Play and Recreation Field AB45 2NQ. 2pm start. 17-20 May at Thomaston Farm, Maybole KA19 8JH. 2pm start. 20-23 May at Ewes Water Caravan Park, Dumfries DG13 0HG. 2pm start.

SEVERN VALLEY

Hi everyone, by now you should have all received your Rally Booklet for 2024. We apologise for the fact the Rally Booklet is late, but even due to serious illness of committee members and a number of issues over rally venues we finally got there. A number of members have voiced concerns over the number of rallies that require booking. As with other groups throughout the country we are finding more and more venues requiring numbers and details of who is using their venues before arrival. The Committee took the decision to make venues where there are limited spaces to be ‘booking only’ to avoid disappointment.

We are also introducing a Loyalty Scheme for this year and your Loyalty Card and Conditions of Use is located in your Rally Booklet so please keep it safe.

Our next rallies are: 19- 21 April at Dean Wood Yorkley Campsite GL15 4TY situated in the Forest of Dean. At owners' request we need to provide details of who is attending so please book at andrea.svmcc@gmail.com. 3-6 May at Newlands Meadow Campsite WR13 5AY. No booking required, further details to follow on website and Facebook.

S&W WALES

Hi everyone. As I write the sun is shining on the third lovely day in a row! After the wettest February on record, and

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 45 >>
GROUP NEWS

three times the normal rainfall here, it seems that spring has woken up at last.

15-18 February at St.Richard Gwyn School, Barry. It was our first rally at this Barry School and we were made very welcome. Our hosts Betty and Glyn with Eleri and Tom parked up 22 vans on a convenient level hardstanding. We welcomed three Avon – the Deans, the Mouldings and the Terretts with five Severn Valley – the Priddeys, the Laytons, the Lamberton and the Sheers. It was the first rally for the Caldwells and we hope not the last.

On Friday evening the convenient warm hall was ideal for bingo and a ‘Valentine’s Love Quiz’ organised by Tom. The joint winners were my team led by Margaret and Lindsay, and the Severn Valley team.

On Saturday many took the opportunity to catch the bus to Barry thanks to the bus details/directions provided by Carol. On Saturday evening we started with the ‘Coffee Morning’ as the weather forecast was torrential rain overnight and on Sunday. Then it was bingo again with Keith providing the music and the evening ending with Keith singing – he does love to sing.

It was a wet journey home after an enjoyable weekend.

Upcoming rallies: 28 March-2 April at Hi Tide, Porthcawl CF36 5BT. Easter weekend, showers, toilets. Bookable. Starts 2pm. 19-21 April at Dan yr Ogof Caves, SA9 1GJ. Includes EHU, hardstanding. Bookable. Starts 12noon. 2-7 May at Sully Sports Club, CF64 5SP. May Day Weekend, Sunday Car Boot Sale, Clubhouse. Bookable. Starts 2pm. 17-20 May at Hereford Rowing Club, HR4 0BE. Showers, toilets, Clubhouse. Starts 2pm. 29 May-4 June at Aberystwyth Rugby Club, SY23 1HL. Showers, toilets, Summer Party. Starts 12noon. For all bookable rallies please contact our rally officer on 07791 524227 or keithjhoward17@gmail.com.

SUSSEX

Hope you are all well and beginning to enjoy the new season in your motorhome, revisiting old favourites and exploring new areas.

Our Valentine's rally in Worthing was a successful start to our 2024 programme of events, with visitors from Kent, East Wessex and Chiltern boosting our numbers, including new Sussex members, Steve and Sheila. A warm welcome to them and everyone who braved the changeable weather.

We are lucky to have Alan and Mary Campbell in our group, as they have a strong musical background and were part of the professional entertainment from the Retrolites, who provided an excellent performance with fellow band members to get us all involved and on the dance floor. Well done! A huge thank you to all who joined in and helped set up, run and close the meet. It’s always appreciated by hosts when members get involved with the running of a rally, in any task, whether large or small. This is what makes our club so successful, a real Musketeer attitude to ensure all feel involved. Help and assistance is only a step away when required and greatly appreciated.

We still need hosts for Oakside Farm, Ringmer, BN8 5AD,

13-17 June. There are no close attractions so a chill-out weekend is on the cards. If you feel able to help, please contact anyone on the committee for details. We may have to cancel this if no one steps up, which would be a shame.

Our next rally is at Little Downash Farm, (BN27 2RN) near Hailsham, on 11-15 April, start time 2pm, hosted by Ted and George. This is a new site to us, with toilets, showers, possibility of a barn to meet in, a fishing lake and fire pits. Let’s hope the weather is kind.

On 16-20 May we have The Barn in Lancing, BN15 8JG, hosted by Marilyn and Dave. No need to book unless you want EHU at extra cost. There will be a Group Forum on the Saturday so come along and have your say.

The Intergroup Festival and AGM will take place on 23-28 May. This is the ‘new style National’ for the MCC, booking direct with Head Office, Mary and Alan Campbell will be our Sussex marshals so contact them for details of the theme and let them know if you are attending.

Check out our website, SussexMCC.weebly.com or our Facebook page, Sussex group of the Motorcaravanners group for more details.

SWP

Our first rally of the year was a Valentine's three-day event at Trevarrian Holiday Park, Morgan Porth in Cornwall. When our hosts Pete and Marion arrived on the Thursday night it looked as if the weekend would be write-off with torrential rain and wind, however on Friday the sun came out and we were able to site everyone around the roads of the site to stop them sinking in the very water logged grass.

On Friday evening we enjoyed a game of 10 pin bowling won convincingly by our very own Acting Chair Lady, Linda Chudley, followed by a good old catch up with each other old and new in the bar.

Saturday was a little dull but people managed their own thing, some venturing off for walks or on the bus. In the evening we were entertained by Arthur who soon had everyone laughing and dancing.

Sunday we had our raffle, prizes for the best Valentine's decorated van which was won by Sheila and of course a bottle of plonk for Linda’s bowling, followed by a short love song quiz. A few vans left for home later in the day while many stayed for a Sunday lunch at the local pub with the rally finishing on the Monday.

We had 17 vans in total: 15 SWP and two West Country with two new couples who soon got to know everyone and are looking forward to more meets with the MCC. Thank you to Marion and Pete for a fantastic rally.

SWP members can you please make sure I have your upto-date email address and contact details, this will enable me (Sheila SWP Sec) to keep you fully informed. You can email me using the group email address below.

Upcoming rallies: 28 March-1 April (Easter Rally) at Trevornick Holiday Park, Holywell Bay, Cornwall TR8 5PW. 11-13 April at Tencreek Holiday Park, Polperro Road, Looe Cornwall PL13 2JR. May 31-3 June at Broadleigh

46 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 GROUP NEWS

Farm Park, Stoke Gabriel, Devon TQ9N 6PU, due to limited spaces, this is a bookable rally which will be open to SWP members from 29th April and to all MCC members from 13th May. Booking info. Please email: swpeninsula@ motorcarvannersclub.co.uk with the following: name, van registration, membership no. & no. of nights. After booking, if you cannot attend, please give me plenty of notice in order for others to attend from my reserve list.

Amendments to SWP Rally Programme: 30 May-3 June = 5 nights. Teignmouth RFC. This rally is CANCELLED but has been replaced with rally at Broadleigh Farm Park, Stoke Gabriel. See website for more details. 28 August-1 Sept = 4 nights. Anchor Barrow, St George’s Hill, Perranporth. Cornwall TR6 0ED. £21 pupn, £1.50 per dog per night. 5-8 September = 4 nights. Fox & Hounds, Okehampton. This Rally is CANCELLED. 6-8 December = 3 nights. Cofton Holiday Park, Dawlish Christmas Party, £tbc pupn (metered EHU).

WEST COUNTRY

Our first rally of the year saw mixed weather with heavy rain but sunshine to remind us that fingers crossed we should get a summer. We welcomed a total of 39 vans to Riverside: 24 West Country, nine SWP, three West Wessex, one Severn Valley and two Avon. Wednesday evening saw us testing our brain cells with a quiz from our chairman. We welcomed Jason Toft to entertain us on Thursday night, he certainly got our dancing shoes on as well as our singing voices. Friday afternoon saw many enjoying a crafting afternoon and an evening of musical songs taking us back to the past. Saturday saw a day of sunshine, and many caught the bus to visit the local area before our raffle and bingo to round off our stay. Many thanks to Jenny, Jim, Angela and Ian for hosting.

Bookings for the rest of the year are still being taken by our rally officers, Exmouth still remains full and a waiting list is being held.

Upcoming rallies: 16-21 April at Cofton Holiday Park EX6 8RP. 14-19 May at Warcombe Farm Caravan Park EX34 7RJ.

WEST WESSEX

Our two planned, early rallies have had to be cancelled due to problems with the venues, the second being completely flooded due to the exceptionally high rainfall on already waterlogged ground. As I sit looking out of the window, through the drizzle, at my forlorn motorhome, I am wondering when the sun will shine again!

Upcoming rallies: 11-15 April (4 nights) at Parley Glade, Church Lane, West Parley, Ferndown, BH22 8TR. 50*46’ 19.24”N1*52’ 44.18”W. Start time 12 noon. Grass field with water and Elsan only. Cost £13.50 PUPN or £20 with electric hook up. Please book with your hosts, Robert and Ann Hartley ( 07774 674507). 20-27 April (7 nights) at Leadstone Camping, Warren Road, Dawlish Warren, Devon,

EX7 0NG. 50*35’ 38.51”N. 3*27’ 06.23”W. Start time 12 noon. The site is a short walk to the beach, farm shop and restaurant. Cost £20.50 pupn with electric hook up. Please book with Gill on 07746 058606. 11-18 May at Birchwood Touring Park, Bere Road, Coldharbour, Wareham BH20 7PA. 50* 42’ 50.50”N. 2*08’ 49.90”W. Mid way between Wareham and Bere Regis. Start time 12noon. Full facility site, direct access into the forest, leading to the Sika trail, walking and cycling. On-site shop. £22 including EHU. Hosts are still needed for this rally to go ahead – please ring Andy to volunteer. Again see website or rally book for full details.

YORKSHIRE

Here in Yorkshire we had our Valentine's rally at Wetherby Racecourse. It was attended by 12 vans from Yorkshire, one Lancashire, one East Midlands and two from Northern Counties.

Although it snowed heavy in some areas the day before the rally, we had some hardy motorhomers attend. Thankfully the snow melted away and the Saturday stayed dry so people could get out and walk into Wetherby. We had a great weekend with quizzes and bingo.

Our following rally was held at Skipton Auction Mart. We had 26 attendees: nine Northern Counties, two East Midlands, one Lancashire and 14 Yorkshire. The weather was eventually kind to us. Big thanks to Malcolm and Carol for their help, also Neil from Northern Counties for the Saturday night music quiz. What a brilliant bunch you are. Thank you to everyone supporting our rallies. Special thanks to Christine for hosting these two rallies. Her first of many we hope, well done you did a great job as a new host. Christine really appreciated your encouraging comments and support.

Our next rallies are the very popular Easter rally at Eskdale School 28 March-2 April, with live entertainment. All starting at 1pm.

RALLY AMENDS

SWP 30 May-3 June = 5 nights. Teignmouth RFC. This rally is CANCELLED but has been replaced with rally at Broadleigh Farm Park, Stoke Gabriel. See website for more details. 28 August-1 Sept = 4 nights. Anchor Barrow, St George’s Hill, Perranporth. Cornwall TR6 0ED. £21 pupn, £1.50 per dog per night. 5-8 September = 4 nights. Fox & Hounds, Okehampton. This Rally is CANCELLED. 6-8 December = 3 nights. Cofton Holiday Park, Dawlish Christmas Party, £tbc pupn (metered EHU).

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 47
GROUP NEWS

Findhorn Bay Holiday Park is the secret stop where those in the know add something special to a North Coast 500 adventure.

Find out more at:

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Enjoy 10% off your first stay when you use your MC10 code for a touring or camping booking.

Blair Castle Caravan Park

Located 90 minutes from Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness, Blair Castle Caravan Park is set within nine acres of tranquil Perthshire countryside.

Choose from a range of pitches that suit every need, including fully serviced touring & tent pitches for all size requirements. Our cosy camping pods are perfect for those who are looking to embark on a Highland adventure or stay in our brand new Glamping Pods, opening from May 2024.

Enjoy the serenity of the wilderness whilst in the comfort of home with our 1, 2 and 3 bedroom Woodland Lodges. With a variety of dog friendly accomodation, the whole family can stay, and there are endless vistas to be found on the many trails that make up Atholl Estates.

www.atholl-estates.co.uk

48 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 Add Scotland’s Best Beach to your NC500 and Make it Extra Special. PLUS TAKE 10%
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AND WE’LL TAKE THE SOUTH ROAD

Frances and Michael Howorth shun the better known NC500 road trip and head to Scotland’s southwest coasts of Dumfries and Galloway in search of the South West Coast 300.

It was Hogmanay and we were first footing. The lump of coal we had brought with us as our gift, lay on the table, and we all had a healthy slug of the water of life in our glasses. That was when we told our guests we were in Scotland to drive the South West Coastal 300. Somewhat shocked, they exclaimed, “No you daft Sassenachs, it’s not the SWC 300 you are wanting, the road trip you are after is called the NC 500 and that’s in a whole different part of Scotland to where you are now.” Patiently, we explained our mission

was to not drive our motorcaravan on the 500-mile circuit in the north, we wanted to drive the newer, and less well-known, pretender to the road-trip throne.

More than just a driving route, the SWC 300 is a great road trip for motorcaravanners to enjoy. Against a backdrop of gorgeous scenery, this circular 320-mile route hugs Scotland’s southwest coast of Dumfries and Galloway and South Ayrshire. With sandy beaches, a breath-taking coastline and rugged clifftops, this unforgettable road trip passes through rolling hills and

a multitude of charming towns and villages. It has something for everyone including some history and a little romance. Despite its name, half the route is inland, traversing the Southern Uplands and circumnavigating Galloway Forest Park, the World Heritage Site known as one of the best places in the UK to observe the night sky.

The beauty of it being a circular route, is that you can start it from anywhere and travel in any direction. We started in Dumfries and travelled in an anti-clockwise direction visiting Scotland’s most

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 49
>> Highland Cow on an Insta Coo Tour at Kitchen Coos & Ewes

southerly point and its highest village. Sadly, we had time only to drive the coastal segment.

DUMFRIES

Our start point was the town of Dumfries a thriving market town that has in times gone by hosted several famous people including JM Barrie, author of Peter Pan, the story that went on to inspire generations of young people to read and enjoy this wonderful tale. During his time in Dumfries he liked to visit Moat Brae, now the home of the National Centre for Children's Literature. Barrie said the gardens here were his ‘enchanted lands’ and the inspiration behind the story. But its most famous former resident is Robert Burns who spent his final years here.

Before visiting the town, we spent our first night in Scotland parked at Queensberry Bay Leisure Park near Annan. This 37-acre, beach-fronting retreat, offers a relaxing spot to grab a bite to eat and enjoy the aquatic views.

KIRKCUDBRIGHT

The cute coastal village of Kirkcudbright (pronounced Kirkcoobree) is known as The Artists’ Town because of the town’s link with the Glasgow art movement. It is a major tourist attraction on this coast with a thriving artist community, beautiful cottages, and a waterside location. Visit Broughton House; once the home of the famous Glasgow Boys, a circle of influential modern artists and designers working in Glasgow in the late 19th century. Don’t miss out on the house’s stunning Japanese inspired garden, it is a lovely oasis in the middle of town. Entry into the house is free for members of the National Trust or £8 for adults who are not.

We stayed overnight here at Silvercraigs Caravan Park. Perched high above the town this community owned and run campsite is well

suited for visits to museums and art galleries. We walked down from the campsite to the Dark Art Gin Distillery located inside what was the towns schoolhouse. We joined a tour and tasing and learned the secrets about Peggy the distillery’s beautiful custom built still and the powerhouse behind two very different tasting gins. 'Sky Garden Gin' inspired by the crystal-clear night skies above the Galloway Forest Park. It is a delicious well-balanced London dry

gin with a hint of citrus. Its stable mate, 'Under Story’ is billed as a woodland gin and was not to our taste at all. Its earthy flavouring with pine overtones tasted-to-us, rather like the floor of the forest would, if you were to mix it with water.

Food at Selkirk Arms, just off the main street, was a treat. Local produce, cooked to perfection at prices that do not damage the pocket. What is there not to like? Nearby, Gatehouse of Fleet is an 18th village named after its tollbooth on the road between Dumfries to Stranraer. Once called the Glasgow of the South, Gatehouse of Fleet was a thriving industrial town with cotton mills and its own brewery. Today the town’s iconic clock tower is the star of many a photograph!

THE MACHAR PENINSULA

We drove west onto the Machar Peninsula. Here in 1998, Wigtown became officially designated as Scotland’s National Book Town. This thriving hub for literature in Scotland has over a dozen book shops and an annual book festival. The town

50 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
OUT & ABOUT | SCOTLAND
Peter Pan in the garden of Moat Brae Sue Stonehouse at Dark Art Distillery The Bookshop in Wigtown

old and new to choose from. Trust us when we say, it is impossible to escape empty-handed.

The distillery at Bladnoch is a 203-year-old premium single malt Scotch whisky producer. In recent

businessman whose passion is whisky. His dedication to the distiller’s art has seen the brand reach new prominence and the future of the distillery and its talented workforce has been secured.

Every drop of their traditional lowland style Scotch whisky is crafted using water from the River Bladnoch which runs through the SWC300 touring route. The distillery offers tours and tastings and if you arrive ahead of time there is no need to fret because the tea room – now located inside one of the original barley storerooms – serves great coffee and cakes some of which are laced with whisky.

Our next stop was the picturesque fishing village on the Isle of Whithorn, right down on the very tip of the south-west peninsula of Scotland. The Steam Packet Hotel looks out over the harbour where you can watch the activities of the local fishermen and sailors alongside the daily coming and going of the tides. In a building that clings to its

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 51
Silvercraigs Caravan Park
>>
Bladnoch Distillery shutterstock/PeterMoulton Gatehouse of Fleet

heritage, the inn is renowned for its sea food and boasts two bars and seven en-suite bedrooms. Better still, it has a field behind the pub where patrons can park their vans and peacefully overnight without disturbance.

The “Packet” as it is affectionally known locally has been in the hands of the Scoular family since 1984. Indeed, the pub has only had three owners since before the war, the Scoulars took over from the redoubtable Nonnie Brown who had run it for over 40 years. She took the place over from the legendary local publican Jimmy Robertson who, as rumour has it, had won the pub in a game of cards before the war. John and Sarah Scoular successfully developed the business to its current format and their son Alastair joined them once he had grown up. Since then, the business has grown and prospered.

Toni and Callum Harvey run the hotel and restaurant. Callum’s contemporary cooking style focuses on using fresh local produce, cooked to order, which highlights the natural flavours of the food. This leaves Alastair free to indulge himself in his other passion: The Five Kingdoms Brewery. Alastair and Brendon Dennett, his head chef at the time, created their microbrewery in 2015. They

named it Five Kingdoms, because England, Ireland, The Isle of Man, Wales and Scotland can all be visible on a clear day. Brendon, who had previously worked at 6 Degrees North in Stonehaven, brought this wealth of brewing knowledge to the partnership. With the location, premises and experience of the pub trade and a pure passion for real ale, the pair created the perfect balance for a successful venture that creates honest, fine tasting ales. No wonder we were happy to camp overnight!

THE RHINNS OF GALLOWAY

At its westernmost, the SWC300 passes onto the Rhinns of Galloway, a hammerhead shaped peninsula west of Stranraer. It runs 25 miles from Corsewall Lighthouse in the north to the Mull of Galloway in the

coastline that includes rugged cliffs, tiny harbours and sandy beaches. Few motorhomers venture onto the northern section and most, us included, head south towards the Mull of Galloway, Scotland’s most southerly point. The Rhinns of Galloway have an island-like vibe and driving here is not unlike driving on one of Scotland’s Hebridean Islands. Sparsely populated save for thousands of coos, the peninsula’s principal towns are Portpatrick and the ferry port of Stranraer.

The most southerly tip of Scotland, and one of the best kept secrets in the UK, is the Mull of Galloway. It is home to a lighthouse perched on top of a 260ft cliff surrounded by wheeling seabirds. The light house was built by Robert Stevenson, with work commencing

52 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
OUT & ABOUT | SCOTLAND
Low tide at the Isle of Whithorn harbour entrance
>>
Mull of Galloway
April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 53 01875 870666 www.aberladycaravanpark.co.uk An ideal base from which to tour the beautiful East Lothian countryside CRESSFIELD CARAVAN PARK Set in 40 acres of private grounds • Quiet, friendly and well maintained • Open all year • Modern toilet block • Nearby attractions • Cater for tourers and motorhomes 01576 300 702 www.cressfieldpark.com Ecclefechan, Lockerbie, Dumfries & Galloway DG11 3DR In the heart of the Highlands Tourist info, laundry, play area, free fishing in loch, dogs welcome 01397 772 376 linnhe-lochside-holidays.co.uk Corpach, Fort William PH33 7NL Ballater Caravan and Camping Park with its spectacular panoramic mountain views, is bordered by the river Dee on one side and the Ballater golf course on the other. This is an exceptional holiday destination for people and families of all ages, being only a 5 minute walk from Ballater’s centre with its plentiful cafes, restaurants and shops on Royal Deeside. T: 013397 55727 E: bookings@ballatercaravanpark.com For bookings online please visit www.ballatercaravanpark.com YOUR PITCH? BEN NEVIS Holidays Glen Nevis www.glen-nevis.co.uk Caravan park and campsite at the foot of Ben Nevis • Open all year (10 hardstandings Nov-March) + 9 grass pitches in summer, pitches must be booked online on our website • Mains water, grey water and chemical toilet disposal • 3 private shower rooms and 1 bathroom, underfloor heating, disabled shower room Inver Caravan Park 01593 731441 www.inver-caravan-park.co.uk Houstry Road, Dunbeath, Caithness KW6 6EH • Laundry area, washing machine, free drying • Free fast fibre-optic WiFi • SPAR shop and The Bay, Dunbeath (Inn, pub & eatery) 5 mins walk • Excellent position for North Coast 500 & John o’ Groats Trail • Lovely local walks and beautiful views 01575 560204 info@nethercraig.com www.nethercraig.com A beautiful, tranquil park in the Angus glens where you can escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life

99m above sea level, was first lit in March 1830. Today, you can climb the 115 steps to the top, where a spectacular view from the balcony and lightroom will reward you for your efforts! From here, on a clear day, you can see England, Scotland, the Isle of Man and even Northern Ireland. Look down and there is a good chance you will spot dolphins, porpoises and even whales as they frolic in the waves.

North again and through Stranraer, the gateway to the Rhinns of Galloway, we head for Girvan and then Ayr. For more than a century Stranraer was a busy ferry port for services between south-west Scotland and Northern Ireland. Here SWC300 takes the A77 running along Loch Ryan, offering stunning views across to the volcanic Ailsa Craig in the Firth of Clyde and out to the Isle of Arran and Kintyre.

HIGHLAND COOS

In response to changes in farming policy and growing environmental concerns, famers Neale and Janet McQuistin have adjusted the way they now run Airyolland Farm. They have moved to a less intensive and more sustainable farming system;

the environment too.

Now, instead of farming these beasts for slaughter, that have put them on display. They created Kitchen Coos and Ewes as a way to share their passion for these amazing animals. The farm tours they run include information about how Highland cows help wildlife, with plenty of opportunities to photograph them.

The tours are designed to help you get close to the Highland cattle from the safety and comfort of a purpose-built trailer. Think of it as a farmer-led Highland cow safari! Wind and watertight and

much more enjoyable, it finishes in the barn with a cup of tea or coffee and some home baking fresh from the farmhouse, kitchen and it's all included in the price.

GIRVAN

If you have ever wanted to visit Ailsa Craig to see the seals and thousands of birds nesting on the steep cliffs on the west side, then the best place to start is Girvan. Trips take three and half hours. One hour out, one hour on the island, followed by a half hour tour around it then a one-hour trip back to Girvan.

There are no fewer than 20

OUT & ABOUT | SCOTLAND
Culzean Castle
>>
Visiting the Highland Cows on the Insta Coo Tour at Kitchen Coos & Ewes

edge of a Christmas tree and sheep farm

• Conveniently located for NC500 route stopover

• Back to nature site with pitches designed to maximise privacy

• All sites are hardstanding with electric hook up

• Free wifi • Book on our website

• Motorhome service area with water, grey water and chemical waste disposal

07796 662 256 info@kessockcaravanpark.co.uk

www.kessockcaravanpark.co.uk

• Peaceful Park

• Pan for Gold

• Small Camping Field

Situated on the beautiful West coast of the Highlands of Scotland with unsurpassed views of the Isle of Skye and Outer Hebrides. The ideal location for the holiday of your choice.

Bring your own caravan, motor-caravan or tent and set up wherever you wish in the designated areas, whether you choose a sheltered spot among the sand dunes or a raised pitch with unrivalled views, our large spacious site has something for everyone.

For something a bit different, why not try our camping pods, a fun alternative and unique holiday experience. Alternatively, you can spend your holiday in one of the Park’s five-star static caravans.

On site facilities:

• Licensed shop • Café on site

• Dog walking area • Play area

• Licensed shop • Café on site

• Launching slip • Laundrette

• Picnic tables • Picturesque beach

• Nearby walks

• WiFi on-site

• Covered indoor cooking and eating area

• Loch and river fishing on the Estate

Sands Caravan & Camping, Gairloch, Wester Ross. IV21 2DL

Tel: 01445 712152

Email: info@sandscaravanandcamping.co.uk

www.sandscaravanandcamping.co.uk

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 55
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Electric & Non Electric Grass Pitches
2.5 miles from Ferry and Oban Bay
On Site Facilities fromPitches £15pn CARAVAN & CAMPING
dalraddy@alvie-estate.co.uk www.campinginaviemore.co.uk Spacious and secluded and water connections welcomes your dog and Located just 4 miles south of Aviemore, Dalraddy Holiday Park is the perfect place explore the Cairngorms National Park. Motor Caravanner Apr 21.indd 1 dalraddy@alvie-estate.co.uk www.campinginaviemore.co.uk 01479 810 330 Discover nature at Dalraddy Holiday Park, welcoming motorhomes, children and pets. Enjoy scenic pitches, onsite activities and amenities including a shop, catering/coffee van and explore wildlife and scenic walks in the stunning Cairngorms

one of the most photogenic ruins in Scotland. The castle made a dramatic appearance in the TV time travelling series Outlander. Others like Culzean Castle, are viewable in all their splendour perched on a clifftop above crashing waves, Culzean was once the home of the chief of Clan Kennedy and designed by famous Scottish architect, Robert Adam. Like so many beauty spots hereabouts, Culzean Castle enjoyed a role in Wickerman movie as Lord Summerisle’s castle. Now managed by the National Trust for Scotland, it is surrounded by a huge country park with its own beaches, parkland, woods and children’s play areas.

It is difficult to review the SWC300 without mention of The Electric Brae, a gravity hill. It lies on the A719 north of Culzean Castle on the way to Ayr. Gravity hills are also known as a magnetic hills, mystery hills, anti-gravity hills or gravity roads. They are places where optical illusions become apparent. There are hundreds of recognised gravity hills around the world, but this is the only known one in Scotland. They occur when contours of the surrounding land produce the illusion of making a slight downhill slope, appear to be an uphill one. Meaning, when left out of gear, vehicles appear to be rolling uphill against the force of

OTHER DRIVING ROUTES IN SCOTLAND

NC500

The North Coast 500 is in fact 516 miles long circular route that starts and finishes in Inverness. It takes in the towns of Wick, John O‘Groats, Thurso, Durness, Lochinver, Ullapool, Gairloch and Applecross. Those who simply want completion bragging rights can do it in seven days, but if you are to truly appreciate the beauty and culture it is best to consider 10 days minimum and 21 days as perfect. The North Coast 500 is perhaps the ultimate Scottish

own motorhome or campervan. Look out for the engraved stone beside the road. Once stopped, release your handbrake. You then get the very odd sensation where you appear to be rolling uphill, towards the the sea. The illusion is a powerful one, and the effect somewhat weird, even when you know what is causing it.

Robert Burns, Scotland’s poet may have lived and worked in

Highlands roadtrip. Stunning scenery, windswept beaches, ancient ruins and historic castles all add to the experience.

NORTH EAST 250

Starting in Aberdeen and driving north through Peterhead, Fraserburgh, Portsoy, Spey Bay, Glenlivet and Braemar before arriving back in Aberdeen, the North East 250 is perfect for those who love Scottish coastlines, mountains, and whisky. Easily achievable inside 7 days, the route takes in the best of the dramatic countryside and towns of Speyside, Royal Deeside, Cairngorms, the east coast, and the Moray Firth coast.

THE HEART 200

This route was only recently conceived but nevertheless it is

near Ayr. This was the setting for his poem "Tam o' Shanter" and the single story thatched cottage where he was born is now a museum for all things Rabbie Burns. The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum is dedicated to his life and offers a truly unique encounter with Scotland’s favourite son. Set among four hectares of the poet’s cherished Alloway countryside, the museum comprises the atmospheric cottage, the historic landmarks where he set his greatest work, the elegant monument and gardens created in his honour, and a modern museum housing the world’s most important collection of his life and works.

Ayr marks the spot where the SWC300 leaves the coast and heads eastwards inland through The Southern Uplands. It is also the point where we must leave the remaining part of the SWC for another visit.

Frances and Michael Howorth acknowledge and thank Visit Scotland www.visitscotland.com for facilitating this trip.

56 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
OUT & ABOUT | SCOTLAND
Michael on the Brig O'Doon, immortalised in the poem Tam O'Shanter.

than 250 but certainly more than the advertised 200 miles, the Heart 200 is in fact 232 miles. It is a circular route that begins and ends in Sterling. Allow a week for this one and enjoy driving through Trossachs Pier, Killin, Blair Athol, Pitlochry, Perth, Kinross and Crief before returning to Stirling. Divided into six sections, this road trip takes in the forests of the west, the Highlands to the north, the rivers of the east and the historic south.

ROUTE

The official Argyll Coastal Route begins in Glasgow and ends in Fort William. It covers a distance of 263 miles and it is best to allow between seven and 10 days to do the road trip justice and enjoy the ride. From Glasgow drive to Tarbet then onto Inverary, Lochgilphead, Oban, Glencoe and Fort William. You could, if you wanted, to link up with the NC500 and drive on up the A82 to Inverness.

THE KYNTYRE 66

Here is a mini road trip for those short on time. It begins and ends in Kennacraig taking in Tayinloan, Isle of Gigha, Machrihanish, Campbeltown and Carradale. Rather unsurprisingly it is 66 miles long, but if you get a Paul Macartney urge, you can add extra miles and venture further south to include the iconic Mull of Kintyre lighthouse.

SYKE & THE ISLANDS

It seems almost incredible that you can drive circular route of more than 250 miles on one of Britain’s offshore islands but on Skye you can. True, Skye is connected by a bridge to the mainland but that just makes for an easier access to what is a truly fabulous route. Plan on 5 days to complete this 275 mile route but try to avoid the peak season.

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 57
• Open March to October • Adjacent to The Pickaquoy Centre leisure complex • Walking distance to historic Kirkwall town centre • Free wifi • Perfect base to explore Orkney • Dogs welcome • 80 pitches including hardstands and electric hookup Located in the heart of the Orkney Islands www.orkneycaravanpark.co.uk | 01856 879900 Peerie Sea Loan, Kirkwall, Orkney, KW15 1UH | campsite@pickaquoy.com
The North Coast 500 scenic route Kirkwall Kirkwall

AVON

M&D SERVICES LTD

SERVICING DIRECTORY

Unit 1 Balaclava Rd Ind Est, Bristol, BS16 3LJ

T: 01179 651900

E: tony@mdservicesltd.co.uk

BRISTOL

CHIPPING SODBURY CARAVANS

Badminton Rd, Chipping Sodbury, Bristol, BS37 6LH

T: 01454 318374

E: sales@chippingsodburycaravans.co.uk

W: www.chippingsodburycaravans.co.uk

CAMBS

OUT & ABOUT MOTORHOME & CARAVAN SERVICES

Unit 5b King Street Industrial Estate, Langtoft, Peterborough, PE6 9NF

T: 01778 561836

E: info@oandacaravans.co.uk

W: www.oandacaravans.co.uk

CHESHIRE

A&E LEISURE LTD

Unit 51/56 Cosgrove Business Park, Daisy Bank Lane, Anderton, Northwich, CW9 6FY

T: 01606 973005

E: service@aeleisure.co.uk

W: www.aeleisure.co.uk

CUMBRIA

JOHN MACADAM AND SON

Woodlands, Brampton Road, Longtown, Carlisle, CA6 5TR

T: 01228 319742

E: carlislerescue@macadams.co.uk

DEVON

DEVON & CORNWALL MOTORHOME & CARAVAN SERVICE REPAIR CENTRE

Unit K&M, Boringdon Mill Business Park, Galileo Close, Plympton, PL7 4JW T: 01752 717750

E: service@dandcmotorhomes.co.uk

W: www.dandcmotorhomes.co.uk

ESSEX

WINSOR GARAGES LTD

Ford Rd, Clacton-on-Sea, Essex, CO15 3DS

T: 01255 222110

E: winsorgaragesltd@btconnect.com

W: www.winsorgaragesltd.co.uk

WESTS MOTORHOMES

Wests Ind. Park, Todd Close, Rainham, RM13 9XX

T: 01708 556237

E: info@motorhomerepairs.net

W: www.motorhomerepairs.net

GLOUCESTERSHIRE

NEWENT AUTO CENTRE

Newent Business Park, Newent, GL18 1HP

T: 01531 828001

E: newentauto@yahoo.co.uk

W: www.newentauto.co.uk

HAMPSHIRE

CS&R Ltd

Unit 4, Woolmer Trading Est, Woolmer Way, Bordon, Hampshire, GU35 9QE

T: 01483 906435 M: 07979 386780

E: csrcaravanserviceandrepairs@gmail. com W: www.repairscaravan.co.uk

YEW TREE WORKSHOPS

Fawley, Southampton, SO45 1BX

T: 02380 010029

E: yewtreeworkshopsltd@outlook.com

W: www.badminstongroup.co.uk

MERSEYSIDE

SPENCER & GILBERT

3 St. Luke’s Rd, Southport, Merseyside, PR9 0SH

T: 01704 531398

E: spencerandgilbert@gmail.com

NORFOLK

CROWN GARAGE

Newton St. Faith, Norwich, NR10 3LG

T: 01603 898253

E: enquiry@thecrowngarage.com

W: www.thecrowngarage.com

JOHN WICKS CARAVANS

145 Lynn Road, Grimston, King’s Lynn, Norfolk, PE32 1AG

T: 01485 601212

E: johnwickscaravansales@outlook.com

W: www.johnwickscaravans.com

SIMPSONS GARAGE (GT YARMOUTH) LTD

Suffolk Rd, Gt Yarmouth, NR31 0LN

E: service@simpsons-skoda.com

W: www.simpsonsmotorhomes.co.uk

NORTHERN IRELAND

THOMPSON LEISURE SERVICE CENTRE

62c Drumnabreeze Road, Magheralin, Co. Armagh, BT67 0RH

T: 028 9269 3999

E: info@thompsonleisure.com

W: www.thompsonleisure.com

NORTHAMPTONSHIRE

ROCKINGHAM CARS FIAT

Cockerell Rd, Phoenix Parkway, Corby, NN17 5DU

T: 01536 268991

E: phil@rockinghamcars.co.uk

W: www.rockinghamcars.co.uk

• No job too big or small • Mechanical & Habitation • Servicing for any make, model or age Motorhome Telephone 01386 853511 www.auto-sleepers.com

DIRECTORY IN ASSOCIATION WITH

WHITE ARCHES MOTORHOMES

A45, Higham Rd, Little Irchester, Wellingborough, Northants, NN8 2DU.

T: 01933 277303

E: info@white-arches.co.uk

SCOTLAND

TURRIFF CARAVAN CENTRE (TCC)

Premium Partners for E&P Hydraulics and VB Airsuspension. Your local specialists for habitation services, conversions & more!

Greengate Lodge, Delgaty, Turriff, AB53 5TA

T: 01888 562186

E: sales@turriffcaravans.co.uk

W: www.turriffcaravans.co.uk

CULLODEN SERVICE STATION LTD

Barn Church Rd, Inverness, Invernessshire, Scotland, IV2 7WB

T: 01463 792979

E: cullodenservicestation@gmail.com

DONALD MACKENZIE LTD

Authorised Fiat dealer. 62 Seafield Rd, Inverness, Inverness-shire, IV1 1SG

T: 01463 235777

E: dmaftersales@dmmotorgroup.co.uk

THE MOTORHOME REPAIR CENTRE

253 Blairtummock Rd, Glasgow, G33 4ED

T: 0141 773 1212 F: 0141 771 1999

E: info@motorhomecentrescotland.com

NEWTON GARAGE LTD

14 The Wisp, Edinburgh, EH16 4SQ

T: 0131 669 6336

E: newtongarage@aol.com

NORTH ROAD GARAGE

Great North Rd, Kelty, Fife, KY4 0HW

T: 01383 830404

E: sales@northroadgarage.co.uk

W: www.northroadgarage.co.uk

SHERIFFMILL MOTOR COMPANY LTD

Sheriffmill Rd, Elgin, Moray, IV30 6UH

T: 01343 547121 or 01343 547378

E: service@sheriffmill.co.uk

SOMERSET

CARAVAN & MOTORHOME SOLUTIONS

Littlecombe Garage, Touches Lane, Chaffcombe Rd, Chard, TA20 1RY

T: 01460 63320

E: caravanmotorhome@btconnect.com

W: caravanmotorhomesolutions.co.uk

HIGHBRIDGE CARAVAN CENTRE LTD

A38 Bristol Road, Highbridge, Somerset, TA9 4EX

T: 01278 764800

E: AftersalesDept@highbridgecaravans.co.uk

W: www.highbridgecaravans.co.uk

SOUTHWEST MOTORHOMES

Southfields Enterprise Park, Unit 1, Jordans Rd, Ilminster, Somerset, TA19 9FF

T: 01460 57524

E: service@southwestmotorhomes.co.uk

W: www.southwestmotorhomes.co.uk

STOCKPORT

PINNACLE MOTOR ENGINEERING

Gordon Street, Stockport, SK4 1RS

T: 0161 480 0397

E: info@pinnaclemotors.net

W: www.pinnacle-motors.co.uk

SUFFOLK

SHARMAN CARAVANS

Habitation services to all motorhomes and campervans – AWS approved workshops. Colchester Rd, Ipswich, IP4 4RU

T: 01473 713284

E: sales@sharmancaravans.co.uk

W: www.sharmancaravans.co.uk

SURREY

ELMWOOD VEHICLES LTD

Motorhome Servicing & MOTs

278 Kingston Rd (rear of petrol station), Epsom, Surrey, KT19 0SH

T: 0208 394 2847

E: info@elmwoodvehicles.co.uk

W: www.elmwoodvehicles.co.uk

GREENFIELDS CARAVAN & MOTORHOME SERVICING LTD

Servicing and repairs for all makes

AWS Approved workshop. The Maultway, Camberley, GU15 1QA

T: 01344 231153

E: help@caravan-service.co.uk

W: www.caravan-service.co.uk

SUSSEX

CARAVAN TECH SERVICES LTD (Bailey, Swift and Adria) London Rd, Hurst Green, East Sussex, TN19 7PN

T: 01580 860260

E: shop@caravantech.co.uk

W: www.caravantech.co.uk

JC LEISURE

Lifestyle Park, Harbour Rd, Rye, TN31 7TE T: 01797 227337

E: service@jcleisure.co.uk

W: www.jcleisure.co.uk

PREMIER MOTORHOMES

Premier Business Park, Main Rd, Birdham, Chichester, West Sussex, PO20 7BU.

T: 01243 511189

E: service@premiermotorhomes.com

W: www.premiermotorhomes.uk

RELIANCE CARAVAN & MOTORHOME SERVICES

Units D1-D3, New Barn Offices, Funtington, Chichester, West Sussex, PO18 9DA.

T: 01243 940050

E: enquiries@reliancecms.uk

W: www.reliancecms.uk

Auto-Sleepers MOTORHOMES OF EXCELLENCE Habitation Servicing • Accident & Insurance Repairs Motorhome or Caravan • Fully Qualified mechanics www.auto-sleepers.com/servicing
Auto-Sleepers MOTORHOMES OF EXCELLENCE
60 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 01752 717750 service@dandcmotorhomes.co.uk www.dandcmotorhomes.co.uk HABITATION SERVICING • REPAIRS • MAINTENANCE • ACCESSORY SUPPLY & FITTING RoadPro Agents for Devon & Cornwall Agents for Speedcoat shower repair systems Agents for Maxview OVER 60 YEARS OF INDUSTRY EXPERIENCE 0117 9694955 sales@lnbleisure.co.uk PRO-FOLD BICYCLE CARRIER 1151-1152 Aztec West Business Park, Almondsbury, Bristol, BS32 4TF FITS UP TO 2 BICYCLES FULL REAR DOOR ACCESS PEGASO 590 & 740, FORD TRANSIT, FIAT, PEUGEOT, KNAUS, RAPIDO, HYMER TEL: 07946 115876 07946 115876 | activedesignsolutions@hotmail.com www.mirror-armour.co.uk MIRROR ARMOUR PROTECTION FOR MIRRORS AVAILABLE FOR A CLASS & COACHBUILD

TRIED & TESTED

Frances and Michael Howorth try out and test motor caravan gear and goodies.

1. MOZZI-ZAPPER – MOSQUITO KILLER AND BIVVI LANTERN

At this time of year, you may wonder how we managed to try out and test a mosquito repelling lantern. The answer to that is, while writing a travel feature for another magazine, we were despatched to travel the mangrove swamps in India. You will have to trust us when we say that in the state of Odisha, the mozzies are as big as Boeing 747s and they carry malaria. But this Mozzi Zappa Lamp from Wolf International really did a great job. The blue light has a special wavelength that attracts insects to the high voltage grid where they are killed by an electric shock. The bodies fall through the inside of the lamp and can then be brushed away.

2. SOLBIO

Increasingly we are encountering campsites that are asking users not to empty toilet cassettes that contain harmful chemicals into their waste disposal points. And it is easy to see why! Chemicals in any form must, by their very nature, be a pollutant. So, we went in search of a toilet fluid for motorcaravans that is 100% natural and we found one! Developed in Belgium, but available here in the UK from Solbio UK, Solbio is an organic toilet fluid made exclusively from natural ingredients that is both child and pet safe. All of the other ones we looked at, including so called “green” ones, work by killing bacteria and then breaking down waste using a synthetic chemical process. Solbio works with nature rather than against it. It stimulates a type of bacteria that is already inside your cassette. These bacteria rather rapidly multiply and essentially compost the waste at speed (within hours). Because composted waste is a lot less strong smelling, the fresh aromas of the essential oils in Solbio do not need to be overbearing like the old-style chemicals. Solbio is safe to use; if you spill it on your hands, it will not harm you. If you spill it in your vehicle, it will not stain the floor. It is vegan certified, and it is so safe to use that it can be used flush through and sanitise your fresh water tank. We use it to clean our grey water tank too. www.solbio.co.uk

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 61 >>

3. SCREENWASH FILLER FUNNEL

We are quite sure we are not the only owners of a Fiat Ducato who find it almost impossible to fill the screen wash bottle without spilling washing fluid all over the engine compartment. In fact, having looked under the bonnet of the Boxer and the Relay, we are quite sure the problem is the same for those owners as well. Yes, we know, the fill pipe can be pulled out, but it is still difficult to get the contents of the kettle into the screen wash bottle. So, imagine our delight when Ian Pedley of Moho Bits suggested we try out his natty little funnel that does the trick without mess or aggro! Designed to make filling the windscreen washer bottle a lot easier, the funnel can easily be stored under the bonnet, making it simple to find whenever needed. Price £12 inc P+P from https://moho-bits.wixsite.com/

4. GOOD2GO ECO CASSETTES

Here is a product so new it is not even available for you to buy just yet, but we think that when it is put on sale, it will fly off the shelves. The Good2Go eco cassette solution is the brainchild of Alan Pierce who was hoping to install a composting toilet into his Auto Sleeper so as to extend his periods off grid away from toilet cassette emptying points. His first thought was to simply replace the Thetford toilet, but cost and modifications proved awkward and potentially expensive. Having seen portable camping loos that used compostable liners, he made a simple Blue-Peter style prototype out of cardboard, bought some bin liners and cat litter, and simply "used it in anger".

He 'hit the ground running' finding that the prototypes worked exactly as expected, without the need to modify his van. His flat pack cardboard cassette mimics the

cassette replacing Thetford C2, C3 or C4 and Swivel Bowl Models. Fit a compostable liner bag inside the toilet bowl and use as normal, adding a handful of sawdust or cat litter onto what you leave behind. Once a day, seal the liner and drop it through the hole into the waiting cardboard cassette. Once a week, or before that if it is full, take the entire cardboard cassette out of the van and dispose of it responsibly as you would dog waste or soiled nappies. Better still, drop the entire thing onto your compost heap and allow nature to do the rest. Watch out for this clever product. It is going to sell well and will bring added freedom to those who enjoy camping off grid. www.good2go.uk

5. GRIP PADS FIAMMA

We should not have parked there of course! But the rather bossy women in the yellow high-vis jacket was quite insistent so when we went to watch our grandson play in a match we did as we were told. And got stuck! With all that recent rain, it was unsurprising that the playing fields were so soft. Fortunately, we had a set of Fiamma Grips on board. The clever, lightweight system incorporates an anti-skid structure with superior traction. Made from UV-resistant polyethylene they are of solid construction and once placed underneath our front wheel drive wheels we quickly came unstuck. They take up very little room and therefore we never leave them behind. The two grips are each 74 cms long 22.5 wide and can be combined into one long piece to position under the motorcaravan’s wheels. They are easy to clean, can be used on sand or mud, can even be used with Fiamma Level Up system. www.fiamma.it/en/

62 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
TRIED & TESTED
AD MOTORHOME AND CARAVAN HABITATION DOORS AVAILABLE 1,500 DOORS IN STOCK LOCKER DOORS IN STOCK, AVAILABLE IN ALL SIZES DOOR CATCHES, SEALS, DOOR BINS ALSO IN STOCK ALL DOORS ARE POA PLEASE RING OR EMAIL FOR MORE INFORMATION Contact us: 01482 868632 / 01482 880044 info@olearymotorhomes.co.uk www.olearymotorhomes.co.uk IN LEFT & RIGHT HAND, TO FIT BAILEY, ELDDIS, SWIFT, AUTO-TRAIL, LUNAR, COACHMAN, FLEETWOOD, AVONDALE, ABI & MORE 47485 external fit, stable R75Silver frame, hull white panel 1675 x 540 (aperture size) 47412 int fit one piece R90 - Fixed window, TFP, blind 1675 x 540 47417 int fit stable R90 - Fixed window, TFP, blind 1675 x 540 46883 88 stable R75 - Plain stable door, silver frame, hull white panel 1675 x 540 Left or right hand 1675 x 540, bin available, sold separately 1920 x 570 aperture, bin available, sold separately COACHMAN door with frame 1995x620 Replacement Hobby entrance door 1755x580 Autosleeper etc 1990x620 with frame & mosquito net Auto sleeper etc habitation door & frame 1925x570 SWIFT PARTS STOCKED Effective, biodegradable water tank additive suitable for all cassettes and flushing toilets A biodegradable concentrated fluid specifically designed for portable toilet waste cassettes Dual action, eco-friendly and biodegradable toilet fluid designed for your top and bottom tank KAMPA KEM BULK DEALS ON BIG ORDERS

R.T.A: AL- 4-04-0017

In sunny Almería, Spain - It’s Europe’s sunniest spot!

• Family run, category 2 peaceful, community campsite in the south of Spain - near Mojácar

• Bowling greens

“Possibly

www.stanwix.com

• Busy bar, restaurant & shop

• Full services (Inc: UKTV hookup & much more)

• Full service pitches available

+

Family-run park overlooking Port-Eynon Bay. Pitches for motorcaravans, tourers and glamping pods, as well as self-catering bungalows. Within walking-distance of the beach. Clubhouse with licensed bar, serving meals. WiFi. Grocery shop & laundrette. Outdoor heated

64 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024 Campsite Directory
Call
info@runcottage.co.uk
www.runcottage.co.uk
01394 411 309
the friendliest adult only caravan site in Suffolk”
the friendliest adult only caravan site in Suffolk”
you love the seaside or want to explore the Lakes, Stanwix park is the place!
Catering Apartments and Caravans to hire for 3, 4 and 7 night breaks. Camping Pods and fully serviced pitches for tents, touring caravans and motorhomes.
“Possibly
Whether
Self
/ Tel: 01697332666
(34)
950 528 324
www.campinglosgallardos.com Camping Los Gallardos
swimming pool. Children’s play area. Tennis court. Booking advised for bank/school holidays. Open 1st March until New Years Day. 01792 687205 www.bankfarmleisure.co.uk enquiries@bankfarmleisure.co.uk Bank Farm Leisure Park, Horton, Gower, Swansea, SA3 1LL Peaceful and spacious 5 pitch site conveniently located for NC500 route stopover 07796 662 256 info@kessockcaravanpark.co.uk Widdicombe Farm In the English Riviera T: 01803 558325 E: info@widdicombefarm.co.uk W: www.widdicombefarm.co.uk On-site mini bus available • Site open all year • A large family run touring park • A collection of self catering cottages and static caravans • Seasonal, heated enclosed outdoor/indoor swimming pool • Children’s play area • State of the art over 18s health club with gym, adult indoor pool, steam room and sauna • Coffee house serving refreshments • Bar and takeaway with entertainment Charmouth, Dorset DT6 6QL | 01297 560226 www.manorfarmholidaycentre.co.uk T: 01752 344 122 info@riversidetouringparkplymouth.co.uk www.riversidecaravanpark.co.uk Riverside is a quiet, secluded countryside park. Convenient for easy access to the beautiful South Hams’ beaches, Dartmoor National Park, Cornwall and Brittany Ferries port. 7 DAY SPECIALS FOR OVER 50S CAMPING & TOURING PARK IN THE GARDEN OF ENGLAND • Award-winning campsite • 400 acres of private countryside • Riverside setting • Hardstanding, grass & EHU pitches • Onsite pub/restaurant FROM JUST £23 PER PITCH/ NIGHT 01622 870838 www.hopfarm.co.uk Tel 01305 782575 www.bagwellfarm.co.uk Chickerell, Weymouth, Dorset DT3 4EA Discover the Landscape Treasure the Memories Camping in Every Season Touring, Camping & Glamping K i n g s b r i d g e , N r S a l c o m b e , S o u t h D e v o n T Q 7 4 A F 0 1 5 4 8 8 5 2 7 2 3 / 0 7 9 6 8 2 2 2 0 0 8 w w w p a r k l a n d s i t e c o u k Sorry, no dogs AdultsOnly OpenAllYear Bus Stop at Site
April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 65 YOUR PITCH? BEN NEVIS Glen Nevis Caravan Park glen-nevis.co.uk holidays@glen-nevis.co.uk 01397 702191 camping | touring | self catering www.callowtop.co.uk 01335 344020 Just 2 mins drive from the lovely market town of Ashbourne. Ideal base for exploring the Peak District. Coarse fishing lake. Direct access to the Tissington Trail cycle route Ashbourne | Derbyshire Looe Country Park 01503 240265 info@looecountrypark.co.uk www.looecountryparkcaravancampsite.co.uk Bucklawren Road, Nomansland Looe, Cornwall, PL13 1QS Tel: 01223 262308 www.highfieldfarmtouringpark.co.uk Long Rd, Comberton, Cambs, CB23 7DG A quiet, beautiful touring park located just five miles from Cambridge. Set in attractive undulating countryside, the area boasts a variety of attractions, from ancient buildings to wildlife parks. Highfield Farm Touring Park Wester Bonnyton Caravan Park Gamrie, Banff, AB45 3EP www.westerbonnyton.co.uk westerbonnyton@gmail.com | 01261 832470 Small, tranquil site with panoramic views of the Moray Firth On the North East 250 route 01454 318374 www.chippingsodburycaravans.co.uk Badminton Road, Chipping Sodbury, Bristol, BS37 6LH MOTORHOMES, USED AND NEW CARAVANS, AWNINGS, WORKSHOP & AFTERSALES, SERVICING, SHOP, FINANCING The UK’s number 1 dealership for Bailey caravans and motorhomes WORKSHOP, AFTERSALES & SERVICING We are a National Caravan Council approved workshop
Fully-equipped NCC approved workshop.
Over 40 years experience. - City & Guilds approved and gas safety trained technicians.
Caravan servicing consisting of over 60 specific & individual checks.
Accessory fitting.
Repairs.
Complete panel replacement.
Single Axle Servicing: £250.
Twin Axle Servicing: £260.
Motorhome Habitation Service: £210 Bring your caravan to us and rest assured it’s in expert hands! • Hardstanding & grass pitches • Launderette • Toilets/showers including disabled • Wi-Fi available • Sorry no dogs allowed t: 01493 720382 w: www.grasmere-wentworth.co.uk Grasmere Caravan Park, 9 Bultitudes Loke, Caister-On-Sea, Norfolk NR30 5DH GRASMERE CARAVAN PARK
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Tea break teasers

See page 68 for solutions

Codeword

Crack the code and fill in the grid.

Each letter of the alphabet is represented by a number from 1-26. Two letters are given as a starter, can you decipher the rest of the code to discover all the words?

Sudoku

The objective is to fill a 9x9 grid so that each column, each row, and each of the nine 3x3 boxes contains the digits from 1 to 9. A cell is the smallest block in the game. A row, column and region consists of 9 cells and the whole game consists of 81 cells.

Medium Hard

66 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024

Wordsearch

Crossword Puzzle

Can you find the jobs listed below?

Bar staff Buyer Clerk

Consultant Cook Courier Driver Farmer Nanny Nurse Pilot Researcher Scientist Stockbroker Surgeon Trainer Tutor Waiter Welder

Across 1 Summer sky sights (8)

5 Desisted (6)

9 Made suitable (7)

10 Put in writing (3,4)

11 Grasp (10)

12 PIN points? (1,1,2)

14 Up till now (2,4)

16 Faith-based fight (4,3)

19 --- Oak ("Far from the Madding Crowd") (7)

20 Grieve (6)

23 Portal (4)

24 So careless about some hot dishes (10)

26 Declines (7)

28 Hibernia (7)

29 Spotting (6)

30 Becomes rigid (8)

Down

1 Dearth (8)

2 Sleep stopper (5)

3 The written classics (10)

4 Side-to-side measurements (6)

6 Corrode (3)

7 Cat breed (9)

8 Coffee accompaniment (6)

10 Elder (6)

13 Without assistance (2,8)

15 Large flying insect (9)

17 Flower attractions (6)

18 Every story has them (3,5)

21 Puts on a pedestal (6)

22 Holiday memento (1-5)

25 Depart (5)

27 Transgression (3)

April 2024 MOTOR CARAVANNER 67

Tea Break Teasers

(from pages 66 & 67)

Codeword

Crossword Puzzle

Wordsearch

Bazaar

Private sale advertisements

ACCESSORIES

GREY WATER ON WHEELS-MAKE WASTEMASTER £15 ONO. Tel: 01424 425566 or 07376 912985 (Sussex)

AVTEX 18.5INCH LED DIGITAL TV/DVD combo for sale (L185DR). Boxed and in good condition, reason for sale upgraded to a smart Avtex. £175 ONO. Please contact Tony Hallum 07986 746464 (North Dorset)

VEHICLES/BIKES

TOW CAR & "A" FRAME white, 1.2 petrol Fiat Panda, 11 reg, 49,000 miles, MOT til 03/25, VGC, cables and tow eyes included. £4,300. Tel: 01509 503105 in evenings (Leics)

TWO ELECTRIC PANDA FOLDING BIKES hardly used. £600 ONO. Tel: 01424 425566 or 07376 912985 (Sussex)

Members'private sale advertisements

Club members are entitled to a FREE classified lineage advertisement of up to 30 words. To be included, please send your listing along with this form to: Motor Caravanner, Countrywide Publications, Fountain Way, Reydon Business Park, Reydon, Suffolk, IP18 6DH or email: bazaar@themotorcaravannersclub.co.uk

If you wish to include a photograph, please enclose a cheque for £12 inc vat payable to Countrywide Publications.

Please indicate whether your item is: FOR SALE WANTED

FREE ADVERT ADVERT WITH PHOTOGRAPH (£12 inc. VAT)

I enclose my cheque payable to Countrywide Publications (please write name and address on back of cheque)

PLEASE NOTE:

• Advertisements will be placed in the next available issue.

• Emailed listings that include photos will not be used until the cheque is received.

• Listings will not be used unless a valid membership number is provided

Name:

Address:

Telephone:

Club membership number:

Postcode:

Sudoku - Medium Sudoku - Hard
68 MOTOR CARAVANNER April 2024
HOYLES DENHOLME MOTORHOMES, CAMPERS & 4X4S TOP PRICES PAID We can come to you Cash, Bankers Draft or Bank Transfer Contac t Tim Hoyle Anytime 01274 832836 •07786 7355 44 Contact Tim Hoyle Anytime 01274 832836 07786 735544 MOTORHOMES & CAMPERS TOP PRICES PAID Countrywide Collection Bank transfer, Cash or Bankers Draft sales@hoylesdenholme.co.uk MERIDIAN MOTORHOMES Quality Motorhomes & Freedom Caravans Bought and Sold Newly appointed Adria Action (lightweight caravans) and Freedom Caravans Dealer for Southern England MOTORHOME HIRE www.meridianhire.com 01243 572672 Unit 7 Church Farm, Old Park Lane, Bosham, Chichester, PO18 8EX info@meridianmotorhomes.com www.meridianmotorhomes.com SELLING YOUR MOTORHOME? You could be £1,000s better off. For details and advice about our highly successful brokerage service. Call us, it will be worth it! WILKINS MOTORCARAVANS Established in the Cotswolds (Glos.) since 1970. 01285 821216 See us at: www.wilkinsmotorcaravans.co.uk Email: sales@wilkinsmotorcaravans.co.uk WANTED Accident Repair Specialists 170 Stafford Road, Cannock, Staffs, WS11 4AH Tel: 01543 572686 www.motorhomerepairs.co.uk Insurance approved specialist motorhome repairers and re-finishers since 1987 All makes & models catered for ACCIDENTAL DAMAGE REPAIRS INSURANCE CLAIMS HABITATION SERVICING Tel: 01543 572686 www.motorhomerepairs.co.uk alists WS11 4AH repairs.co.uk motorhome ce 1987 d for PAIRS G TYRE SAVE .co.uk Tel: 07831 365 412 www.tyresave.co.uk We are based in Deeside, North Wales, close to Chester, Cheshire and the Wirral. Enhance and smarten your Motorhome with Alloy Wheels. 15” and 16” heavy duty wheels to fit most vans from £500 for 4. We can supply by Mail Order or fit in our tyre depot near Chester. See our website for more choice. REPAIRS & SERVICING SELLING YOUR MOTORHOME OR CARAVAN? Tel: 02380 405122 Top prices paid • Professional, family-run dealership “We BUY motorhomes & caravans that are up to 15 years old” www.viscountleisure.co.uk • Southampton SO31 8BN Est. since1977 WANTED CornwallComm_MCM_2x2.indd Classifieds
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